Objective: To assess the current status of operative training for otolaryngology specialist registrars in the United Kingdom. Design: Web-based questionnaire survey. Participants: All otolaryngology specialist registrars in the United Kingdom. Main outcome measures: The overall satisfaction with operative training was assessed as well as the number of operations performed and level of competency in stage-specific procedures, as defined by the Joint Committee for Higher Specialist Training. Results: Otolaryngology specialist registrars are generally satisfied with the quality of their operative training. The most important predictive factor of satisfaction with operative training was the number of theatre sessions per week. The vast majority of registrars (92 per cent by the end of year one, 73 per cent at the end of years two to four) appear to attain all the stage-appropriate surgical competencies during the first four years. However, with respect to the last two years of registrar training, only 26 per cent can perform all the designated (complex) procedures. There are no significant differences between deaneries or geographic regions in the overall satisfaction rates, number of operative sessions, number of operations performed or operative competencies attained. Conclusion: It appears that the Specialist Advisory Committee (SAC) is generally successful in maintaining common operative training standards and providing a homogenous training environment. During the first four years registrars attain an appropriate level of general training while the last two years are mainly devoted to subspecialty interests.
- Training Support