Objective: We aimed to evaluate the procedural training opportunities for basic paediatric trainees in a large tertiary perinatal centre in Australia, to facilitate a realistic expectation of the procedural skills acquired during a 6-month training period.
Methods: A prospective study in which all neonatal registrars and fellows anonymously documented their opportunities for procedural practice (including IV cannulation, intubation, umbilical lines insertion etc) for each shift during a calender month. Based on the averaged number of each shift type worked in a 6-month rotation, the total exposure to each procedure for one 6-month rotation was calculated.
Results: During a 6-month period, the registrars had the largest number of exposures on IV cannulation (140.54), venous blood sampling (26.78), bag and mask ventilation (17.38), intubation (7.1) and lumbar puncture (6.68). For the fellows, the largest number of exposure was IV cannulation (127.92) followed by intubation (16.53) then venous blood sampling (21.02). Procedural skills to which registrars had little exposure included chest drains, chest compressions, peripherally inserted central vascular lines and placement of oro-gastric tubes.
Conclusion: There are ample training opportunities for registrars during a 6-month period. Simulation/animal models for rare procedures will be helpful to increase the trainee's procedural competency.