The training programme rotates to four different centres. Trainees will have the opportunity to rotate to at least three, and probably all four centres. The posts rotate every nine to twelve months, depending on the needs of the trainees in post.
Training includes gaining experience of palliative medicine for patients with any diagnosis in a full range of settings – patients’ own homes, day hospice, inpatient specialist palliative care units, and general hospitals including a regional hospital and a cancer centre.
A minimum of two years must be spent in specialist palliative care, working with a full multi-professional specialist palliative care team. At least one year of this will be in an inpatient specialist palliative care unit with a minimum of ten beds, at least six months will be in a hospital specialist team, and at least six months cumulative experience is expected in community specialist palliative care.
Training in community palliative medicine may or may not be done as a continuous block and includes outpatients, day hospice, home visits and work with a community specialist palliative care team.
Trainees may use attachments to oncology, chronic pain services, and other related medical specialties to meet the curriculum competences. Trainees also gain experience of working with cancer site specialist Multidisciplinary Teams (MDTs), liaison psychiatry/psycho-oncology services, social services, chaplaincy services, pharmacy, rehabilitation services, discharge teams and bereavement services, and management experience to include working both within the NHS and charitable sectors.
Trainees are encouraged to attend relevant courses. There is a two-monthly study half-day run by the trainees to cover various aspects of the curriculum. There is also a two-monthly study day for palliative medicine and oncology trainees, organised by the oncology training committee.