The Wessex Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMFS) scheme, popularly known as the South Coast rotation, provides a five-year full time (and pro rata less than full time) training in oral and maxillofacial surgery.
Trainees spend one year in each unit – St. Richards Hospital (Chichester), Queen Alexandra Hospital (Portsmouth), Southampton, Salisbury and Poole – with a further year towards the end of training at a unit tailored to the trainees developing specialty interest (e.g oncology, deformity, trauma).
All aspects of the curriculum are covered except craniofacial surgery, but we have good links with Birmingham and Glasgow, and funding available for trainees to spend some time before the exit Fellowship of the Royal Colleges of Surgeons (FRCS) in one of these units, so they are fully prepared for the examination.
Several of the units within Wessex have an extensive skin cancer practice, providing trainees with a wealth of experience of surgical management in this area, as well as adding to parotidectomy and neck dissection numbers.
Across the rotation approximately 100 free flaps are performed per year. There is also a great opportunity for clinical research, particularly in Portsmouth, and trainees leave that unit with on average three to four papers from the year.
The consultant trainers are committed to delivering excellent training and there is a regular teaching programme of six study days, which rotate across the units. Trainees from Oxford are invited to these study days and vice versa. The rotation is well known for preparing trainees for consultant practice and has a high pass rate in the FRCS exit examination