South West Peninsula

Regional Advisor:   Dr Stuart Dickson (Plymouth)

Training Programme Director and Deputy Regional Advisor: Dr Rob Jackson (Plymouth)

Trainee Representative: Dr Emily Howells

Number of posts available:  4-8 per year

ICM Training in the South West Peninsula

The South West Peninsula incorporates Devon, Cornwall and a large part of Somerset within its boundaries. We deliver quality ICM training, whilst being surrounded by some of the most beautiful scenery in the country – from stunning Cornish beaches to spectacular Dartmoor National Park, plus all the other benefits of this wonderful region.

Training in ICM is currently delivered in 4 major Trusts based in Plymouth, Exeter, Truro and Torbay; trainees may also spend time in Taunton during partner specialty training. Please see the unit descriptions below for full details on individual units.

Stage 1 training

Stage 1 training is spent in the hospitals outside of Plymouth. A bespoke programme will be created for you on appointment, based upon prior experience, but will be spent in a combination of ICU, anaesthesia and medicine placements as required. Emergency Medicine posts may be available for those who wish to spend up to 6 months of their year of medicine in EM. We welcome applicants from all applicable core programmes and will tailor stage 1 training to suit.

Stage 2 training

The specialty ICM year is predominantly spent in Plymouth, with 3 month modules each in neuro ICM, cardiac ICM and adult general ICM (if required, as determined by dual CCT). To ensure excellent exposure to paediatric ICM, a 3 month placement is arranged in our nearest PICU in Bristol.

A Special Skills year can be organised in a number of the approved modules (including echo) and will be delivered in any of the training centres.

Stage 3 training

Stage 3 training is split into two 6 month modules, one of which will be spent in Plymouth, and the other in either Exeter or Truro. We pride ourselves on delivering excellent preparation for consultant life: our stage 3 trainees are on a separate rota from the other ICU registrars and gain experience in how to run ICU ward rounds and deliver senior support for other trainees. Time can be provided for pursuing additional skills in echocardiography, teaching and research, and you will be encouraged to attend National and International meetings.

More about the Region

The South West Peninsula has a strong history of delivering excellent training in Intensive Care Medicine. We have particular strengths in echocardiography (with BSE TTE accredited consultants in every training unit and a BSE TOE accredited ICU consultant in Plymouth). FICE and CUSIC accreditation and supervision is available at all hospitals and regional ICU ultrasound courses for both occur twice a year in Plymouth. We also host a yearly ICU bronchoscopy course in Plymouth, and deliver the ICS bronchoscopy course in London.

The major highlight of the ICU year is the Annual Society of Devon Intensive Therapists conference (, which takes place in June each year in the stunning Saunton Sands hotel, attracting renowned speakers and a broad multidisciplinary audience from intensive care units around the region and beyond. There is an annual bursary of up to £1000 awarded by SODIT to support projects by trainees, nurses and AHPs in Intensive Care. Please check the SODIT website for previous programmes.

There is an established monthly regional ICM study day programme, delivered across all the training units, targeting the FFICM exam, ICM competencies and beyond. All units have a strong commitment to education, research and quality improvement, and actively involve trainees in study recruitment and QI projects. The CQC has rated all units as ‘Excellent’ or ‘Good’ which reflects the region’s commitment to providing the best possible care for ICU patients.

For more information on individual ICM Training Units, please see the related downloads below or contact the Regional Advisors.