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Clinical Requirements

Clinical Terms  

All clinical training terms are approximately three months in duration (Clinical Terms). The start and end dates for Clinical Terms will be determined by the Training Board.  A Clinical Term is active if the trainee is undertaking clinical training as part of the SET Program. A Clinical Term is inactive if a trainee is on approved interruption as part of the SET Program. 

The Clinical Terms are as follows: 

 Clinical Term   Date Range 
Term 4 - 2023   13/11/2023 - 04/02/2024 
Term 1 - 2024   05/02/2024 - 05/05/2024  
Term 2 - 2024    06/05/2024 - 04/08/2024  
Term 3 - 2024   05/08/2024 - 03/11/2024
Term 4 - 2024   04/11/2024 - 02/02/2025 

 

 

 

 

 

The full-time training requirements relating to active Clinical Terms are as follows. 

  • Clinical Term Requirement: Submit quarterly Professional Performance Assessments
  • Basic Clinical Term Requirement: Satisfactory completion of at least three active Clinical Terms during Basic Neurosurgical Training 
  • Intermediate Clinical Term Requirement: Satisfactory completion of at least nine active Clinical Terms during Intermediate Neurosurgical Training 
  • Advanced Clinical Term Requirement: Satisfactory completion of at least four active Clinical Terms during Advanced Neurosurgical Training 

There are also rules relating to performance in clinical terms for progression between training levels as detailed in the Regulations. 

Clinical Training Posts 

Clinical training posts facilitate workplace hands-on service learning and exploration in a range of training environments providing the opportunity for the trainee to develop, with supervision, the requisite experience, knowledge, skills and attributes necessary to become a competent independent specialist neurosurgeon. Click here to view information on the training posts and the training post allocation process.

Professional Performance Assessment

Active Clinical Terms are assessed using the Professional Performance Assessment Report (PPA Report). The standards in the PPA Report are the minimum standards the Training Board expects trainees to have prior to entering the SET Program.  These minimum standards must be maintained or exceeded at all times during the SET Program.  Completion of the PPA Report, on the prescribed form, must be undertaken for each active Clinical Term during each year of training as part of the SET Program. 

The current due dates for the Professional Performance Assessment Reports are as follows:

 Clinical Term   Date Range   Report Submission Dates   
Term 1 - 2024   05/02/2024 - 05/05/2024    05/05/2024 - 10/05/2024 
Term 2 - 2024    06/05/2024 - 04/08/2024    04/08/2024 - 09/08/2024
Term 3 - 2024   05/08/2024 - 03/11/2024  03/11/2024 - 08/11/2024
Term 4 - 2024   04/11/2024 - 02/02/2025   02/02/2025 - 07/02/2025

 

 

 

 

For full details on the Professional Performance Assessment Report and performance related issues, please review the Regulations.

Download the Professional Performance Assessment Report here 

Download Training Program Regulations here (commencing 5/2/2024) 

 

Operative Experience Assessment

Appropriately supervised operative experience obtained during clinical training, including good case mixes and caseloads, are essential learning opportunities for trainees to acquire the necessary technical skills and expertise to practice as an independent neurosurgical consultant.  Trainees must maintain an operative experience log of all procedures that they participate in as part of the SET Program during active Clinical Terms. 

Trainees have the option to use the RACS MALT system or submit the NSA Logbook Summary Report. The NSA Logbook Summary Report can be downloaded below.  To access MALT, you will need to sign into the RACS website. Full details can be found on the RACS website https://www.surgeons.org/en/research-audit/morbidity-audits/morbidity-audit-and-logbook-tool. If you require assistance gaining access or using MALT, please contact the MALT team by telephone on 08 8219 0939 or email at [email protected].

The full-time training requirements relating to operative experience are as follows. 

  • Clinical Term Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum of 80 major neurosurgical procedures for each six months while in active Clinical Terms 
  • Basic Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum of 200 major neurosurgical procedures from commencement of the SET Program while in active Clinical Terms 
  • Intermediate Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum of 1,000 major neurosurgical procedures from commencement of the SET Program while in active Clinical Terms
  • Advanced Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum of 1,200 major neurosurgical procedures from commencement of the SET Program while in active Clinical Terms
  • Primary Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum 500 major neurosurgical procedures as primary surgeon from commencement of the SET Program while in active Clinical Terms (the cases are included in the overall minimum of 1,200)
  • Paediatric Case Requirement: Participation in a minimum of 50 major paediatric neurosurgical procedures from commencement of the SET Program while in active Clinical Terms (the cases are included in the overall minimum of 1,200) 

The current due dates for the Logbook Reports are as follows:

The current due dates for the Professional Performance Assessment Reports are as follows:

 

 Clinical Term   Date Range   Due Date   
Term 3 & 4 - 2023   07/08/2023 - 04/02/2024   09/02/2024
Term 1 & 2 - 2024   05/02/2024 - 04/08/2024    09/08/2024 
Term 3 & 4 - 2024   05/08/2024 - 02/02/2025  07/02/2025

 

 

 

 

Download the Operative Logbook Summary Report here  

Download Training Program Regulations here (commencing 5/2/2024) 

Direct Observation of Procedural Skills Assessments (DOPS)

The Neurosurgical Direct Observation of Procedural Skills Assessments (DOPS) are designed to assess both knowledge and technical proficiency in discrete procedural skills. The procedure must be performed by the trainee and observed by a Surgical Supervisor or Surgical Trainer approved by the Training Board (Assessor). 

The Assessor must have supervised the trainee undertaking the procedure on multiple occasions. Where the Assessor is not the Surgical Supervisor, the Surgical Supervisor must also sign the DOPS form to confirm they are confident with the assessment completed by the Assessor. 

The trainee should initiate a DOPS when they feel they have a reasonable chance of demonstrating safe and efficient independent practice.

The SET Program training requirements are as follows:

  • Basic DOPS Requirement: Be assessed by one Assessor as having satisfied each Type 1 DOPS procedure 
  • Intermediate DOPS Requirement: Be assessed by two different Assessors as having satisfied each Type 1 and Type 2 DOPS procedure (including those submitted during Basic Neurosurgical Training)
  • Advanced DOPS Requirement: Be assessed by one Assessor as having satisfied any five of the Type 3 DOPS procedures (including those submitted during Basic and Intermediate Neurosurgical Training) 

Any DOPS form can be submitted to the Training Board at any time during the SET Program. The DOPS will only be assessed as satisfied if: 

  • The DOPS is related to the performance of the procedure during an active Clinical Term; 
  • The DOPS form has been signed by the Assessor; 
  • The date the procedure was last observed by the Assessor is recorded on the DOPS form; 
  • The DOPS form is submitted to the Training Board by the trainee within 14 days of the date the procedure was last observed by the Assessor as recorded on the DOPS form; and 
  • Where the Assessor is not the Surgical Supervisor, and the Surgical Supervisor has signed the DOPS form to confirm that they are confident with the assessment completed by the Assessor.

Type 1 DOPS

The Type 1 DOPS procedures are as follows:

Acute Subdural Haematoma

Chronic Subdural Haematoma – Burr Hole or Craniotomy

External Ventricular Drain

Opening and closing a pterional craniotomy

Type 2 DOPS

The Type 2 DOPS procedures are as follows:

Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion

Carpal Tunnel Decompression

Cerebral Abscess Aspiration or Stereotactic Biopsy of a Cerebral Lesion (discontinued unless one was submitted prior to the 2023 training year)

Cerebral Abscess Aspiration or Excision 

Excision of Cerebral Metastasis

Extradural Haematoma

High Grade Glioma

Intracerebral Haemorrhage Evacuation

Lumbar Laminectomy for Canal Stenosis

Lumbar Microdiscectomy

Revision of Shunt (discontinued unless one was submitted prior to the 2023 training year)

Spinal Abscess or Tumour

Ventriculo-Peritoneal Shunt (insertion and revision)

Stereotactic Needle Biopsy

 

Type 3 DOPS

The Type 3 DOPS procedures are as follows:

Craniotomy and Clipping of Anterior Circulation Aneurysm

Meningioma resection involving sphenoid wing or venous sinus

Pituitary Tumour – Trans-sphenoidal resection

Posterior Fossa / Skull Base Tumour

Posterior Fossa Decompression/Chiari Decompression 

Spinal Cord Tumour

Spinal Fusion: Posterior - Instrumented

Trigeminal Microvascular Decompression

Ulnar Neurolysis

Cerebral angiography or endovascular procedure

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