The training pathway to becoming a cardiothoracic surgeon in Ireland commences at Core Surgical Training (CST) in ST1 and completes at Specialty Training, ending at ST8.
Within these eight years of training, you will undergo two years of CST in ST1 and ST2 – core training is undertaken by all surgical trainees, irrespective of their future specialty aspiration, and aims to introduce all trainees to the principles of surgery in general and give them the knowledge, skills and attitudes required in preparation for Specialty Training (ST3 - ST8).
Throughout these initial two years, you will be assessed via the Competency Assessment and Performance Appraisal (CAPA) process.
ST3 is entry-level into (higher) Specialty Training which completes at ST8. This is based on on-going CAPA, successful completion of the Membership of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (MRCS) exam and a specialty interview (ST3 - ST8).
All Specialty Training programmes have a defined curriculum that you will need to complete. Bi-annual assessments, training courses, wet labs and modalities, such as the Intercollegiate Surgical Training Programme (ISCP), are used to track progression throughout ST3 - ST8. You will need to complete the curriculum and Fellowship Exam of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in order to achieve a Certificate of Completion of Surgical Training (CCST) at the end of training which deems you eligible for registration with the Irish Medical Council.
You will then have the option of focusing your training on a subspecialty in cardiothoracic surgery, i.e. adult cardiac, adult thoracic, transplantation or congenital cardiothoracic surgery.
More information on the curriculum is available on Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum Programme (ISCP) website.