Health Education and Improvement Wales provide the highest quality training for vascular surgery trainees. Although a geographically spread out country, training is located in three centres – two in South Wales and one in North Wales.
These centres serve a population of approximately three million with the full range of arterial and venous problems catered for. Endovascular surgery for the thoracic and abdominal aorta is a well-established technique practiced at the centres, as well as more routine areas such as lower limb revascularisation, carotid surgery and management of diabetic feet. Wales has recently produced the highest pass rate in the intercollegiate examination and many progress to consultant jobs. Research is also encouraged.
Wales offers a comprehensive and supportive training program which is currently delivered by three hospitals, with excellent road links and commuting options between them. The Welsh vascular training programme delivers a broad exposure to all aspects of vascular surgery; our trainees have a very strong logbook of surgical experience by the end of their training.
Tertiary aspects of vascular surgery covered in Wales include thoracic stent grafting for transections, type B dissections and thoracic aortic aneurysms. Complex open aortic surgery is performed at Swansea and Cardiff. Other areas delivered include an extensive thoracic outlet surgery service covering all three areas – neurological, arterial and venous. Rare conditions such as mesenteric ischaemia, management of iliofemoral DVTs and venous arterialization for lower limb salvage are also performed.
Teaching is provided on a monthly basis and rotates around the three vascular sites so that the full vascular curriculum is covered in a twelve-month period. Regular feedback is provided with the multiconsultants reports so that any training issues can be addressed.
Research is encouraged and many of our trainees attain higher degrees and have also progressed into advanced national and international Fellowships. Presentation of papers and research is encouraged both within Wales in local meetings and also internationally. The majority of our trainees choose to stay in Wales at the end of their training and we believe this is indicative of the success of the program and the attraction of Wales as a place to live and work.
“Very supportive consultants with excellent training opportunities.”
“Training in Wales is great. The people are fantastic and very welcoming.”