ARCP Positive

In the time when I was dashing around Edinburgh last week, rousing rabbles like a professional rabble rouser, three people were meeting somewhere else in Scotland to consider whether I had done enough this year to be considered competent to become fully registered with the GMC and an SHO in August.

Honestly, this has a lot less to do with how good or bad of a doctor I am and a lot more to do with how good I am at jumping through ePortfolio hoops.

The whole process of getting signed off for FY1 had been made more than usually stressful by my having an educational supervisor who decided, at 3pm on a Friday afternoon, mind you, that because I had never worked on his ward, he didn’t want to be the one who signed me off, and that isn’t in principle an unreasonable thing to think, except that:

    1. At the half hour induction meeting I had had two months earlier with the same supervisor, I had pointed out three times that we were never going to actually work on the same ward.
    2. 48 hours before the deadline for F1 sign off is therefore a hell of a time to decide to have a problem with it. Especially when the majority of those 48 hours are the weekend.
    3. The voicemail that was left for the postgraduate administrator went like this: “Hi, this is Consultant Surgeon. I’m sitting here with Dr Beth Routledge who has come for her final sign off meeting and I have some significant concerns… [long pause during which shorelines erode, amoeba evolve, and I have a cardiac event] … because I’ve never worked with her.”

Thank God for a surgeon who was willing to drop everything on a Monday morning at ten minutes’ notice to turn into my acting clinical supervisor. And, in the end, when provided with that and with documentation of all the ways in which other people thought that I satisfied the requirements of F1 and not screwed anything up too terribly badly, my actual supervisor, he of the Darwinian voicemail, agreed after I had yelped down the phone at his secretary that my ARCP (or progress meeting, to those of you happily unversed in ePorfolio speak) was now tomorrow, oh my God, help, to finally complete my educational supervisor assessment.

And then on Friday, peering at my phone browser after the lunch break at Synod, a new notification. Outcome 1.

Last August, when my very first educational supervisor asked what my goals were for the year, I told her that my goals were to not die and to not kill people and to get to FY2 in one piece. I told her that that seemed, frankly, like enough to be going on with, and it did. I had days when it seemed like more than enough to be going on with.

I’m qualified to be an FY2.

Madness.

And, mission accomplished.

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6 comments

      • Yes. Well. :)

        It’s like a foreign country. We had a work experience student in yesterday and we all became very aware that we would say something… and then take it back a step… and then explain it… and then try to explain it in English… and then realise that we didn’t know the English for some of the stuff we were saying. And when she left, we all kind of looked at each other and said, “Wait, when did we learn to speak this language?”

  1. Good grief – why on earth did he not react earlier, when he realised you were not going to be on the same ward? Why wait? And thank heavens for people with common sense and compassion. So what are your goals for the coming year?? ;)

    • A question that I have been asking myself since I left that meeting and wandered back into the office and swore loudly.

      Well. I don’t actually finish my current job for another six weeks, so I’ve got some time to think about those goals. For now, I’m panicking a little bit about being the oncology SHO.

  2. You’ve come this far successfully Beth. On the strength of that, keep on going….. you can do it.


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