Intensive Care Medicine Training

Intensive Care Medicine (ICM) is an exciting and dynamic specialty with the responsibility for caring for the most critically ill patients in hospital. While other medical specialties deal exclusively with specific organs or body systems, ICM encompasses the entire spectrum of medical and surgical pathology. An ICM doctor is able to provide advanced organ support during critical illness and is responsible for coordinating the care of patients on the ICU. ICM is high-tech, life-saving care that underpins and interacts with all other areas of the hospital.

Training is co-ordinated by the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM). There is up-to-date information on training at the Faculty of Intensive Care website.

The Wessex Intensive Care Society website is a good resource for trainees.

Single Intensive Care Medicine Programme

It is possible to train exclusively in ICM in addition to combining it with another specialty. Recruitment will be by competitive national interviews run by the HEE – West Midlands. Allocations are to the HEE Wessex region. This may mean that applicants may be allocated to any geographic location within Wessex, depending on training needs.

The ICM training programme runs from ST3 to ST7 and consists of three stages of training. Entrance to ST3 is from a number of defined core training routes. Applicants will need to have completed one of the core training programmes in addition to your Foundation years, that is Acute Care Common Stem, Core Anaesthetic Training, Core Medical Training. From these they will need to have obtained one of the following:

  • FFICM (Primary) in development
  • FRCA (Primary)
  • MRCP UK (full)
  • MCEM (full)

Dual CCT Training Programme

Prior to the introduction of single CCT ICM training, doctors training in ICM would do so in conjunction with a parent specialty. While this is no longer necessary, they may wish to undertake a dual CCT programme leading to a qualification in both ICM and a partner specialty. Dual CCT programmes will inevitably extend training time; the length will depend on previous experience and chosen partner specialty, though eight and a half years is the common indicative minimum duration.

Application to the partner specialty is through competitive national interviews. Dual programmes are available in Acute Medicine, Anaesthesia, Emergency Medicine, Renal Medicine and Respiratory Medicine.