BAOMS targets support at DCTs to encourage them to enter OMFS
03 August 2020 (Last updated: 3 Aug 2020 17:37)
Training Programme Director (TPD) for Dental Core Training (DCT) in oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMFS) and Regional Advisor for the Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons of Glasgow, consultant OMFS Muzzammil Nusrath has kicked off his campaign to encourage dental students to aim for a career in OMFS by highlighting the support available.
“Oral and maxillofacial surgery is the exciting surgical interface between medicine and dentistry. Degrees in both disciplines are required to enter OMFS training. Many students are put off doing this because of the time taken to qualify and the expense of self-financing their second degree.
“But there is a lot of help available from the British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (BAOMS), including bursaries from BAOMS and the NHS to support students take their second degree”, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals OMFS Muzzammil Nusrath explained. “Further financial support is available through regular and locum work in OMFS units that is prioritised specifically for trainees pursuing second degrees trainees. And, don’t forget, UK OMFS training is recognised globally as one of the best,” he added.
Anne Begley, BAOMS Council Member whose portfolio is focused on supporting DCTs, is the driving force behind building a web-based resource for those involved in the clinical and/or the educational supervision of DCTs’ training: “I want to help improve the experience of DCTs who work in OMFS units, a challenge I relish. To this end, I need contributions and help from all levels and grades of members of BAOMS - after all, our DCTs are the consultant colleagues of the future.”
She has been involved in training for all of her consultant career. Anne Begley is a consultant in Liverpool and also TPD for the North West OMFS trainees in both the Manchester and Mersey rotations. She is also Associate Dean for Dental Core Trainees in Health Education North West (HEENW).
“Our new Foundation Training in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (FTOMS) programme gives a checklist of OMFS experience and training that anyone can follow, particularly DCTs. Trainees can register their interest in OMFS, which is free of charge, and this allows trainees to build up their portfolio whatever their career plans (see below for link). They get a certificate for participating or completing it.”
Dually-qualified Thomas Howe, currently deciding whether to move into oral medicine or maxillofacial surgery, is also enthusiastic about encouraging DCTs to study medicine, and is working with BAOMS to promote the specialty.
He has already developed a leaflet targeted at DCTs that are considering a career in OMFS. The leaflet is available on the BAOMS website (see below for information).
He says that he has been fortunate to have had support throughout his training from inspirational mentors such as Muzzammil Nusrath “who helped me to develop my skills and fire my enthusiasm”.
Thomas Howe decided to return to university and study medicine because of “the fantastic experience I had while working as a DCT in dental and general hospital settings”. He said that within two years of qualifying as a dentist he found himself assisting exceptional surgeons performing lifesaving operations on a daily basis.
“I have worked as a junior dentist and doctor in a broad range of dental and medical specialties from OMFS, oral medicine and oral and maxillofacial pathology to general surgery, geriatric medicine and orthopaedics. This has made me a more proficient and confident clinician. Training to become an oral specialist involves many years of training, but it’s all about enjoying the journey!”
Most Oral and maxillofacial surgery is the is the surgical interface between medicine and dentistry, and degrees in both disciplines are required to enter specialty training. Most students work either as a qualified dentist or doctor during their second degree years. Shorter second degrees are available that last between three and four years.
Muzzammil Nusrath’s advice to DCTs is: “Get yourself an elective/DCT post in an OMFS department in a university that links to a medical school. Once you decide that OMFS is the career for you, plan early for the second degree in medicine. The remit of the speciality is vast and ranges from craniomaxillofacial trauma, facial deformity, cleft lip and palate, dentoalveolar surgery, craniofacial implants, salivary gland disease, head and neck cancer with reconstruction, facial aesthetics and craniomaxillofacial surgery. The trainees can then choose the right subspecialty of OMFS that they would like to pursue.
“Dedication and the right attitude are required to pursue the subspecialty of head and neck cancer surgery. But oral and maxillofacial surgery is a highly rewarding speciality where trainees learn an incredible amount of skills, and have the satisfaction of treating cancer patients - this cannot be replaced by any amount of money.”
For further information and interviews contact: Siân Evans on 020 8674 8921 / 07752 414433 / or BAOMS
Notes to editors
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