ARCP Advice for Trainees

Please refer to the RCOG website regarding ARCPs

Commonly asked questions relating to ARCP

The RCOG Matrix is confusing. Can you help me to understand it?

Yes, Severn have produced training year specific summary sheets (on the website) for you and your Educational Supervisor (and the ARCP panel!) to understand what is expected for each year of training

I won’t be able to complete my RCOG Matrix requirements by the end of my training year, does it matter?

If any of the RCOG Matrix requirements are not complete, then an outcome 1 at ARCP cannot be given. The ARCP panel will decide whether an outcome 2 (targeted training, but no extra time), or an outcome 3 (targeted training and prolongation of the training year) is required. The RCOG have guidance on ARCP outcomes, including specific advice when Matrix requirements have not been met

N.B. OOP can only be granted if the previous ARCP was an outcome 1

My ARCP is in June. I will only have had 10 & ½ months to complete 12 months of training. Is this fair?

The ARCP panel will assess the time spent in training to date. If there are further competencies outstanding to finish the RCOG Matrix requirements and the panel feel these can easily be accomplished in the time left in the training year, they can issue an outcome 1. This is however subject to the panel discussion (including the External Advisor) and in some cases an outcome 2 or 3 may be awarded. Our advice therefore is to complete your Matrix requirements by the ARCP date, if you possibly can.

What should I do if I really cannot compete the Matrix requirements?

Contact your Educational Supervisor and College Tutor ASAP, so they are aware. They may be able to arrange targeted training, but the more notice you give them, the more likely it is that the situation is redeemable.

N.B. All Trusts have indicated that they are able to fulfill the Matrix obligations for training

I am an ST1-5 and I cannot get any consultant summative OSATS confirming competence, or reaffirming continued competency signed. What can I do? Can an ST6-7 sign me off instead?

Contact your Educational Supervisor and College Tutor ASAP. All Trusts have provision for consultants (or other GMC accredited Clinical Supervisors) to perform OSAT assessments. At least 1 summative OSAT for competence (and all OSATS reaffirming continued competency) needs to be performed by a Consultant/GMC accredited Clinical Supervisor. The other 2 summative OSATS required to show competence can be completed by either higher grade trainees or consultants.

I really cannot get a consultant to sign a Summative OSAT reaffirming Continuing Competency, what should I do?

Contact your Educational Supervisor and College Tutor ASAP. All Trusts have provision for consultants or other GMC accredited Clinical Supervisors to perform OSAT assessments.

I cannot get USS training in EPC in my Trust, do I really need to compete the basic USS modules?

Yes you do! Look at the curriculum and OSAT requirements for competency. You may not need the EPC setting to fulfill the requirements; it is a trans-abdominal scan of a fetus that is required, not a trans-vaginal scan!

All Trusts have indicated that they can fulfill training for the basic USS modules. If there is a problem, then see your Educational Supervisor/ College Tutor.

I’m ST1/3/4/6 and I don’t have to finish my logbook section at this ARCP. Is it OK if I don’t obtain any signatures this training year?

No it’s not! You will be awarded an outcome 2 or 3. You must make acceptable logbook progress each training year.

Can I self-sign or ask a fellow trainee to sign my logbook for level 2 & 3?

No. The logbook is a GMC approved document and certifying competence needs to be the responsibility of a Consultant/GMC accredited Clinical Supervisor. 

The RCOG guidance is that trainees who hold MRCOG are level 2 Educators and capable of supervision of ST 1-2 trainees for basic logbook competencies.
However to ensure quality of supervision for the GMC, we can only accept logbook signoffs from post-MRCOG trainee supervisors in conjunction with a countersignature from a clinical supervisor, or the educational supervisor responsible for the ST1-2 trainee.

Signatures can be obtained (without the need for Educational Supervisor countersignatures), from all consultants (including locum consultants, associate specialists and staff grades, who have clinical supervisor accreditation).

The Educational Supervisor will be responsible for checking these signatures prior to signing off modules.

Does it matter if I’ve only got one set of TO1s or if I have less than 10 TO1s in one set?

Yes it does! You need 2 sets of TO1s for every training year, otherwise the TO2 does not count.

You need to collate a minimum of 10 TO 1 forms (top tip: send out many more than 10 requests to ensure you receive an adequate number of responses). You’ll need to include:

  • Your current supervising consultant(s) – at least 3 consultants
  • Senior members of nursing and midwifery staff in different clinical areas – antenatal setting, labour ward, gynaecological wards and outpatient clinics, theatres (both obstetric and gynaecological
  • Trainees – a maximum of 3 (at all levels)
  • Staff from other specialties outside of O&G – must be senior medical staff
  • Specific individuals/groups as directed by ARCP panel objectives

I haven’t managed to fulfill the Regional Training/ Teaching/ Leadership and Management/ Clinical governance / Presentation and Publications Matrix criteria. Does it really matter?

Yes, I’m afraid it does! You will be awarded an outcome 2 or 3. We are training consultants of the future and consultants will be expected to be trained and participate in these non-clinical areas.

I’m a sub-specialty trainee and my sub-specialist assessment was satisfactory, so I don’t need to bother with the RCOG Matrix requirements do I?

You do if you want to gain CCT in O&G! Even if you are doing well in SST, you still need to fulfill all of the matrix requirements for training in O&G. You are not exempt.

I’m 60% LFT and I’ve done 2 months ST4 and 10 months ST5 since my last ARCP. What do I do?

You will need both the ST4 and ST5 year specific evidence forms (which detail the RCOG matrix requirements). You will need to sit down with your Educational Supervisor and show him/ her the evidence for ST 4 completion and your pro –rata efforts for ST5. Your training time must be logged as “Full-Time Equivalent” (FTE) i.e at 60% 10 months = 6 months FTE and it is to be recorded on the form as such