Scottish Surgical Boot Camps



Upcoming dates:-

Sat 9th - Tues 12th September 2017 - FULLY BOOKED

Sat 28th - Tues 31st October 2017 - FULLY BOOKED

Sat 17th - Tues 20th March 2018

  • A head start to your surgical training
  • Accessible, expert faculty
  • Non-technical and technical skills
  • Advanced, immersive simulations; experienced staff and actors
  • Optional outdoor group activity

INDICATIVE PROGRAMME 2018 (details may vary)



  • Journal club is more dynamic than its name suggests, and previous groups have gone on to contribute to the literature rather thna just read it.
  • In the wet labs, using porcine tissue, the emphasis is on giving opportunity to repeat these complex tasks at your own pace, with trainer feedback on hand, until you can feel the motor task becoming automated. Back in the live theatre, your attention should then be less taken up with the motor skills and more free for higher cognitive functions.
  • So-called non-technical skills (situation awareness, decision-making, communication, teamwork and leadership) are known to be what can make the most difference in surgery. The art and science is first discussed with liberal use of video scenarios, both serious and fun. You are already experienced, so the group often starts with a good array of skills to build on. You can then practise in a series of simulations.
    • table-top clinical prioritisation exercise - a good place to blow away a few myths, learn when to call for help, etc.
    • phone calls to consultants. They will be in character! Learn and practise using a phone call as a transaction. Often amusing, always instructive.
    • Simulated ward round. An utterly safe place to try your skills, make mistakes or not, and debreif. You will each individually have a chance to lead a newly-met team of FY1 and nurse on a ward round of three patients and deal with whatever arises. Everyone in the room will be actors except you but the whole setup is very realistic and easily believable, with all the usual sights and sounds and events of a ward round, and everything available in terms of resouces to call on. The cases are pitched at your level, so you will easily get immersed and just do your job, rather than acting. Debrief is individual, confidential of course, and may be video-enabled.
    • Communication skills. Here we replay tricky situations that may arise in surgery (with patients or colleagues) which may be brought from your own experience if you wish, or may be given scenarios, and we discuss how best to deal with them. Mostly discussion, sometimes a bit of role play.
  • Laparoscopy. In this session we use eoSim simulators to work on basic laparoscopic skills. You will also be familiarised with the kit and, if they are not being currently used by our bicollegiate study group, we may be able to loan you one for the year.
  • Writing an operation note. Not only practise writing notes, but see how they go down in subsequent use in the HDU, a later clinic, or a courtroom!
  • Memorable cases. In boot camp we want to capture and condense the apprenticeship style of training aswell as newer methods. Here we ask 2 or 3 trainers simply to tell stories of patients who taught them something particular.
  • The social side of boot camp - meals and outdoor activity - are an important part of the whole "activity system" of boot camp, and getting to know your peers aswell as faculty.






The half-day outdoor activity programme is optional, but highly recommended as a defining feature of the Scottish Surgical Boot Camp. Applicants should indicate on booking if they wish to take part at an extra cost of £30.

The outdoor acivity will depend on weather and season but will most likely be a trip out to sea from Cromarty in a high-speed RIB (EcoVentures) to find the largest dolphins in the world, other wildlife and sights (waterproof suits are provided but bring warm clothes). Or it may be Canadian canoeing in the Aigas gorge on the River Beauly with Boots n Paddles (bring shoes for getting wet and a change of clothes).

Scottish Surgical Boot Camps, Clinical Skills Centre, Centre for Health Science, Inverness, IV2 3JH.      Email:
design & program by plexus media