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Military Medicine training pathway

Initial Specialist Training

This phase is conducted over two years. Trainees are commissioned into the Permanent Defence Forces (PDF) in the rank of Lieutenant and are released to rotate through hospital posts in medicine, paediatrics, emergency medicine, psychiatry and an optional placement in an additional suitable post. Trainees also undergo basic military induction, conducted over two one-week periods in the Defence Forces Training Centre (DFTC) in the Curragh.

Higher Specialist Training

This phase is conducted over 3 years with trainees promoted to the rank of Captain (Medical Officer). A further six weeks of modular military training is conducted in the Defence Forces Training Centre (DFTC) Military College and Medical School during this period. The trainee is allocated alternating supervised clinical posts in Military Medicine (MM), composed of both Military General Practice and Military Occupational Medicine, and General Practice (GP), each with unique learning opportunities. General Practice training posts will fulfil all criteria required by the ICGP. Military Medicine posts fulfil the necessary criteria including trainee supervision and access to a trainer, and expose trainees to the provision of primary care to soldiers in the daily sick parade and a variety of occupational assessments. Trainees also fulfil medico-legal, pre-hospital, public health, managerial and educational roles as part of their training.

Training Locations

Civilian
The FMMI is engaged with the National Doctor Training and Planning (NDTP) Office of the HSE in order to secure appropriate training posts in the required specialties. The FMMI is engaged with HSE Primary Care Division, an existing GP Training Scheme and individual GP Trainers in order to secure placements for trainees.

Military
Clinical placements are undertaken in the following military settings:

  • Domestic placements in occupational and primary care roles.
    St Bricin's Military Medical Facility, Dublin.
    Military Medical Facility, Curragh, Co Kildare.
    Military Medical Facility, Collins Barracks, Cork.
  • Overseas placements in a deployed operational role according to current Defence Forces operational taskings. Defence Forces Medical Officers are currently deployed in Lebanon and the Golan Heights. Deployment with a partner nation may also be considered. For the duration of these placements, trainees are assigned an appropriate on-site mentor, have a prescribed and agreed role, have regular communication with training authorities in Ireland, and have recourse to direct contact with the an assigned member of the training authority. (Usually the Tutor).
  • Specialist military placements.
    Naval Service
    Naval Base, Haulbowline, Co. Cork.
    Naval Service Ship deployed in Irish or international waters.
    Air Corps
    Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnell, Dublin.
    Emergency Aeromedical Service, Custume Barracks, Athlone.

Day Release
Military Medicine is aligned with the TCD Training Scheme in General Practice based in Tallaght. Trainees attend day release within the partner TCD Training Scheme. This alignment ensures the viability and sustainability of the day release programme with sufficient trainee numbers. The base for the military elements of the training scheme is the Medical School, Defence Forces Training Centre (DFTC) in the Curragh, Co Kildare.

Block Training
Block training periods, covering elements of basic military training and operational medical training in particular, of one to two weeks are conducted in the Defence Forces Training Centre over the 5 year training programme.

Assessment

Trainees must complete all elements of the ICGP assessment process. In addition, trainees will undergo formative and summative assessment of core curriculum learning in Military Medicine.

Military Medicine Formative Assessment

The progress of each trainee is continuously assessed throughout the programme by means of formative assessments, including:

  • Work place based assessments
  • Day release assessments
  • Trainee Logbook
  • Supervisor reports
  • Short courses
  • Project work

Each assessment ultimately informs a twice-yearly Trainee Progress Report.

Military Medicine Summative Assessment

Block training

Certain modules in the training programme are delivered in short block training periods that will include summative assessment. These training elements are: Basic Military Training, Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Medicine, Pre-hospital Medicine, Tactical Medicine and Major Incident Management

Endpoint Assessment

Trainees are evaluated by two summative endpoint assessments, undertaken in years four and five of the training programme respectively. The first part of the endpoint assessment is an Applied Knowledge Test (AKT) towards the completion of year 4. The second part is a Clinical Skills Assessment (CSA) early in year 5.

Completion of specialist training

A certificate of satisfactory completion of specialist training is issued to trainees who have completed all elements of the training programme, including experiential elements, formative assessment and summative assessment.

Candidates must complete specialist training in both General Practice and Military Medicine. The dual specialist award does not exist in isolation.