Hi everyone. Welcome to another psych student video.
So today we're thinking about actually joining team psych! So, I will give you an overview of how you go about a career in Psychiatry, where you would start the progress through training. Just to really see if that's something you feel would suit you.
So, there's lots of different stages throughout a career in Psychiatry. So, I'm going to focus a bit on the UK, in different countries there might be slightly different career structure.
So, to start with you go to medical school, either in the UK or elsewhere, wherever you’re training in the world. That usually in the UK is 4-5 years. Sometimes people intercalate, sometimes people do other degrees first, which might have made that a bit longer. Then after finishing Medical School, you become a foundation doctor where there's two years in which you rotate around general medical wards, surgical wards, and specialty wards to get a core medical grounding clinically. And then you would apply to core Psychiatry which would take three years and specialist Psychiatry after that which would take another three years and then eventually after all of that time you would become a consultant psychiatrist.
So, the main hurdle within that period of Psychiatry is Psychiatry exams in core training which helps you progress from core to specialist Psychiatry.
To get into Psychiatry training in the first place either for core psychiatry so CT 1, 2, 3, or for specialist Psychiatry ST 4, 5 & 6 you need to enter an interview and an application process.
In each case, there's going to be a specialist interviews. When you come to further training, so specialist training, your interview will be dependent on which area of Psychiatry you want to train to be a consultant in. So that's: learning disability, child and adolescent mental health services, older adult services covering things like dementia, general adult psychiatry, forensic psychiatry and the Psychotherapy is another option within that as well.
For core training, you're just looking at kind of getting an overview of Psychiatry, getting all of those skills in place. So, it's a bit more of a general interview process.
In both cases though, actually preparing for those interviews is pretty similar, you’re going to be looking to develop a portfolio. So, things like Audits and other clinical experience, to really sell why you want to do Psychiatry, or the specialist area of Psychiatry and you're going to need to develop the communication skills. Quite often in the interview process you'll get a clinical scenario and be asked to demonstrate those skills. In portfolio development things I could suggest maybe you think to work on and put in there are audits, presentations, if you've got any other qualifications really sell that in there and there's and there's quite a lot of focus now on teaching and leadership within psychiatry. So, that could really help.
In terms of communication skills, ways you could demonstrate that might be things like colleague feedback. So, if you've got multi-source feedback from people you've worked with you can print those off and bring those along, maybe quote those. Practicing the communication skills themselves so you're prepared to go through any scenarios that they might throw at you within the interview process, and practicing this with a range of people. You don't want to only be able to talk to one kind of Patient Group you want to be able to have a diverse range of skills with different kind of cultures and with different groups of patients. So maybe within learning disability, you might have a different approach to children or with adults or older adults. There's different models of skills that you can look at and any observed assessments again will help you to show your communication skills.
So good places to look for further guidance about wanting to apply to see if it might be for you is firstly the Royal College website. So, the Royal College of Psychiatry have some great career resources particularly if you're early on, maybe as a medical student, there are student associate roles. There's also good conferences you can find within the Royal College. Either in general Psychiatry or within specialist Psychiatry.
There are lots of educational resources, the Tron modules are great, and they've got specialist sections if you wanted to know a bit more about a particular area of Psychiatry or about how you going to need to approach those exams. So, there's two paper exams A and B. There's also a CASC exam. So that's a clinical exam. You might be familiar with it as kind of like an OSCE from Medical School.
Medical schools often have their own Psychiatry societies, which you might be able to link in with. And health education England also have some useful information about person specifications.
The most important thing I can say to you really is “why Psychiatry?” So, from my perspective, I love it in Psychiatry. I think it's a really supported environment. You can really get involved with supporting a range of different vulnerable people. So, you kind of get a real idea of what happens in the world and what people have been going through. It's varied, no two stories and no two situations are the same. You get to have a really holistic approach working closely with your MDT (multidisciplinary team) thinking about the psychological side of things, the biological side of things, and what's going on either in their school or home or in their general life? There's a lot of opportunities for training, taking on extra courses, working on leadership skills. It's well supported with frequent supervision being part of the training program in the UK.
There are a lot of interesting and complex cases as well? Especially within specialist services, you can see a range of things. And there's also the other upside, tends to have a better work-life balance than maybe some other Specialties and good less than full time training opportunities as well. So, there's lots of trainees within my own trust working less than full time, getting on well. Importantly you get to work quite closely with other agencies. So, I find mental health law particularly quite interesting and in Psychiatry I can work with the criminal justice system, within the forensics setting or look at different medical inputs may be from a physical health perspective within the eating disorder setting. There's a lot of overlap of working and you get a bit of a mix of inpatient and outpatient work.
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