12.2. The Curriculum in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology
12.2.1 Competency Expected for the Award of a CCST in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology
The level of competency must be sufficient so that on completion of training, the Oral Pathologist (Oral and Maxillofacial Pathologist) must be capable of providing an independent diagnostic service at the level required for the award of a CCST in the specialty, be able to offer a specialist opinion on referred cases and be able to provide specialist advice to clinicians with direct responsibility for the treatment of patients.
Because of differences in the structure of training programmes, case mix between centres and special interests of trainers and/or of trainees, some variation in experience in the different fields of histopathology in the head and neck region is to be expected. For this reason the following phrases have been used to describe the levels of competency expected in different aspects of head and neck pathology for the award of a CCST in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology:
- 'Diagnose'; material for which accurate and complete reports are expected, taking account of all relevant specialist reporting guidelines.
- 'Offer a working diagnosis'; material with which trainee will be familiar and will have had experience of reporting but for which further investigations and/or discussion with a specialist are required before issuing a definitive report.
- 'Offer a differential diagnosis'; material that the trainee will be aware of but may have had only limited or no experience of directly reporting. This group will include some rare/uncommon lesions diagnosable after further investigations and/or research, and lesions for which a specialist opinion will be required.
The level of knowledge within the areas below will vary. However, for each disease process listed, it is expected that the trainee possesses at least a basic level of knowledge within the following categories:
- Clinical features
- Pathological features (macroscopic and microscopic)
- Natural history
- Management options
- Major complications of therapy