NNUH centre of excellence becomes third site to offer new training course
The East of England Endoscopy Training Centre at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) has become one of only three sites to offer a new practical colonoscopic polypectomy course to trainees across the UK.
The NNUH is one of ten regional centres of excellence in the UK for endoscopy training accredited by the Joint Advisory Group on Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (JAG). It offers a range of courses for consultants, specialist registrars, nurse endoscopists and GPs with preference given to those from the Eastern region. The new polypectomy course was developed in Wales and will now be rolled out to other training centres across the UK.
A colonoscopy is a camera investigation that involves looking directly at the lining of the large bowel. A sedative is given to the patient and then a thin, flexible tube with a tiny camera attached (a colonoscope) is passed into the back passage and guided around the bowel. If polyps (small growths) are found, most can be removed painlessly, using a wire loop passed down the colonoscope tube. These tissue samples are then checked for any abnormal cells that might be cancerous.
On the colonoscopic polypectomy course, trainees are taught the complex skills required to remove polyps from colons on realistic models. This provides a safer and more controlled environment to practice techniques that otherwise could result in injury if not done correctly. The first course was facilitated at NNUH by leads Drs Richard Tighe and Ian Beales and nurse training lead Jane Cook.
Part of the funding to set up this course came from the award of Prize for Innovative Teaching by the East of England Deanery. It is the fourth consecutive year the East of England Endoscopy Training Centre at the hospital has been awarded such a prize.
Dr Beales, Consultant in Gastroenterology and General Medicine at NNUH, has also recently been elected to take over the prestigious role of Chair of the trainees section of the National Endoscopy Training Body. In this role he will help lead further initiatives and oversee the governance and implementation of Endoscopy training nationally.
Dr Beales said: We are very grateful for the continued support of the Deanery in expanding our portfolio of courses. These recent developments highlight the continued excellence of Norwich as a centre for both teaching and service in Endoscopy.
Notes for editors
The gastroenterology department at NNUH is one of only six in the country to take part in the first wave of the expansion of the national bowel cancer screening programme, now offering flexible sigmoidoscopy as a screening test to those aged 55 and over, in addition to the establish screening programme starting at 60 years of age, which is based on initially testing for blood in the stools.