Departmental Teaching

Education and Training at CUH Emergency Department

Cork University Hospital Emergency Department aims to deliver the best education and training experience in Ireland: for Doctors in Training, ANP candidates and as part of life-long learning for senior grades. Our programme is run by CEMENT – Cork Emergency Medicine Education N’ Training – a group of enthusiastic Emergency Medicine clinicians who are committed to delivering an unrivalled learning experience, in order to grow our team clinically and professionally and deliver world-class care to our patients.We deliver a full and varied programme to enable our clinicians to:
  • Maintain professional registration
  • Be competitive at interview for the Emergency Medicine training programme in particular
  • Meet college requirements in their domains of clinical practice, including passing professional examinations
  • Excel as Advanced Nurse Practitioners in adult and paediatric Emergency Medicine
  • Achieve their career goals
  • Deliver world-class care to patients across the full range of human pathology

We have developed various streams under the umbrella of education and training in order to support these processes and have a dedicated Discord Server where timetables, content, cases, resources and feedback links can be found.

Held at UCC at the beginning of each six-month term, orientation is designed to smoothen the transition of new doctors and ANP candidates into their new roles in the ED, exploring core topics and key procedural skills. There are two full days of content for general Emergency Medicine and a dedicated Paediatric Emergency Medicine (PEM) day, delivered by consultants and content experts in lecture, small group and workshop format. More senior Doctors in Training have content tailored to maximise benefit to them and a ‘Welcome Pack’ will be sent out in advance to all attendees, with key departmental and operational information for the term.

The days are paid and catered and have been extremely well received by our teams, setting the tone for the term and serving as a low-pressure introduction to Emergency Medicine

We are fortunate enough to have Dr Rory O’ Brien, simulation lead for the South-Southwest Hospital Group amongst our consultant staff; simulation is therefore a key component of education and training in our department. We run targeted in-situ simulations in our resuscitation room every Tuesday morning, usually to tease out a particular intended learning outcome. The focus is as much on the elements of ‘crisis resource management’ that dictate how we work as a team in high-pressure situations as it is on the actual medical treatment. These simulations also provide valuable operational insights to us as a department.

The EM team are also invited to multi-disciplinary simulations at different sites in the hospital, most notably working with our paediatric colleagues on the ward to enhance cross-specialty relationships and enhance patient care throughout the campus.

The Trauma Forum is a national platform for sharing trauma cases and learning from hospitals around Ireland. The Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in Dublin runs the programme but CUH ED is a regular presenter and, as the Major Trauma Centre for the southern half of the country, we have no difficulty filling the hour with interesting cases.​

Run weekly, these sessions target common PEM presentations and are largely case-based. Dr Emmanuelle Fauteux-Lamarre brings her extensive overseas experience to bear on a broad range of topics, from managing the worried parent to resuscitating the critically unwell child. Conducted in the Children’s Emergency Department, all interested Doctors in Training and ANP candidates are welcome to attend.​

Sound Out is the ultrasound-training programme at CUH. The practical session, Pizza Slices, runs every Wednesday at 14:00 in the ED Tutorial Room and walks through core topics in EM-relevant POCUS, delivered by our consultants Dr Abdul Safras and Dr Éanna Mac Suibhne. All are welcome and, of course, free pizza is provided. The curriculum is designed to get you signed off, ultimately, for your Level 1 Ultrasound accreditation. The Discord Server is also updated with weekly cases and resources.​

Weekly education is of a high standard and is continuously being evaluated to ensure the provision of relevant, enjoyable and stimulating material. Each week’s session is run by a consultant/registrar dyad, the roster for which is published at the start of term (it will also be available on the share drive and on the Discord Server). The registrar organises the first two hours (‘core teaching’), which is targeted at SHO level and higher, and the consultant runs a further two hours (‘advanced teaching’), which is of higher complexity. The advanced session, typically, explores topics to the standard of the FRCEM exams (taken by specialist registrars in emergency medicine to reach consultant level).


Thursday education is catered, paid and protected: our team get fed, caffeinated, remunerated and guaranteed four hours of teaching every Thursday morning while the floor is staffed by consultants and senior grades. This commitment is our assertion that we care about our Doctors in Training and ANP candidates and want the best for our patients – by developing skilled, compassionate, knowledgeable and competent practitioners

The Emergency Medicine Innovation and Research Network is our multidisciplinary Journal, research, innovation and audit meeting. Our doctors and ANP candidates gain experience in appraising the literature and discussing the implications with colleagues in a relaxed but engaging environment. This is overseen by our Professor of Emergency Medicine and clinical director, Professor Conor Deasy.​

Click here to learn more about EIRN

As part of our commitment to our Doctors in Training we are laser focused on exam success. This programme is headed up by our resident exam expert. consultant Dr Philip Rowburrey:

  • We conduct National Emergency Medicine Training Programme (NEMTP) interview training, aiming to get interested doctors onto specialist training;
  • MRCEM Primary exam candidates are offered tutorials to prepare them for the first Emergency Medicine professional exam;
  • Single Best Answer (SBA) mock exams are offered to candidates as per demand, with an environment and paper to match exam conditions and content;
  • An 8-station mock OSCE is offered to all those sitting the FRCEM OSCE examination once/twice per year, as per demand. This is immaculately prepared to replicate exam conditions and give candidates a very real appreciation for the exam structure, pacing and content;
  • Weekly bedside tutorials are conducted by Philip to prepare OSCE candidates for their MRCEM and FRCEM exams;
  • ANP candidates have close supervision from the consultant group including tutorials and clinical/professional supervision meetings to ensure that they are on track with their practicum requirements and have the training they need to expand their scope of practice

This is an essential monthly event and all ED staff are encouraged to attend. We discuss complex cases, near misses, great catches and risk in general at CUH ED. Senior medical, nursing and health and social care professionals (HSCP) will be present and the atmosphere is one geared towards learning and development. At CUH ED we aspire a ‘just culture’ where fairness, respect, equality, dignity and autonomy are emphasised. Error is, therefore, viewed as something to be managed by better systems rather than the product of individual failing; our CRM meetings are conducted with this as a core philosophy.

All Doctors in Training and ANP candidates in our department are clinically supervised by a dedicated consultant who will aim to meet them three times per term. As part of this process, each will complete multiple In-Training Assessments (ITAs) to keep abreast of their strengths and areas for development. A Periodic Review of Progress (PROP) meeting takes place mid-term, conducted by a panel of two consultants, with a focus on professional progress, exams, career goals and the facilitation of bi-directional feedback. This process has led to meaningful change in our departmental processes and buttresses clinical supervision for our team.

At the start of term, a number of education and auxiliary roles are offered to our Doctors in Training, largely playing into the elements described above. An opportunity to develop skills in an area of interest, these are also excellent opportunities to develop one’s non-clinical portfolio, enhance one’s resume and increase competitiveness at interview. The roles are supported by consultants and are designed with professional progression in mind.​

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