Background: Consultants in emergency medicine have to deal with a wide range of problems, many of which they will not have encountered during their training. One way to assess the adequacy of specialist training is to ask recently appointed consultants whether or not they feel adequately prepared for their role.
Methods: A questionnaire was sent out to 60 newly appointed consultants in emergency medicine in January and February 2005 and the results analysed.
Results: Many respondents feel that there should be greater emphasis on acquiring clinical skills, partly by greater consultant supervision and partly by providing more experience of anaesthetics and intensive care. New consultants also feel inadequately prepared for their management responsibilities, and this is a source of great stress.
Conclusions: Specialist training in emergency medicine needs to pay more attention to the acquisition of clinical skills and to preparation for management responsibility.
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Ruth Brown is Registrar of the College of Emergency Medicine
Competing interests: none declared
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