Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology in the UK is a Dental specialty overseen by the General Dental Council and Oral and Maxillofacial Pathologists must be registered on the specialist list in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology of the GDC. The award of the Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training (CCST) will require evidence of satisfactory completion of training in all aspects of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology which are outlined in this curriculum.
The curriculum takes as its guidance a number of documents including:
- The Postgraduate Medical Education and Training Board's (PMETB) Standards for Curricula
- The PMETB's Principles for an Assessment System for Postgraduate Medical Training
- The Royal College of Pathologists, Curriculum for Specialist Training in Histopathology and Related Subspecialties.
- A Guide to Specialist Registrar Training (Orange Book).
All examinations and assessments undertaken during training will be clearly linked to the content of the curriculum.
1.1 Entry requirements
Entry to an Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology training programme in the UK may follow the satisfactory completion of:
- a two year period of Foundation Training which may include a period of vocational training (VT), but should also include a period of training in secondary care in an appropriate cognate specialty.
- the possession of the FDS, MFDS or MJDF of the UK Surgical Royal Colleges or an equivalent qualification
- candidates without FDS, MFDS or MJDF may be admitted to a programme but will normally be expected to possess an appropriate higher degree and/or to have had appropriate experience in oral and maxillofacial pathology or a related discipline.
1.2 Duration of training
The Royal College of Pathologists anticipates that five years would normally be required to satisfactorily complete the histopathology curriculum to the required depth and breadth. However, in order to ensure flexibility, the College advises that the minimum duration of training as identified in Schedule 3 of the General and Specialist Medical Practice (Education, Training and Qualification) Order 2003 is four years but that all provisional CCST dates should be set at five years (60 months) in the first instance.
The CCST in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology will be awarded on the recommendation of the local Postgraduate Dental Dean following:
- evidence of satisfactory completion of the Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology curriculum and the minimum training period
- satisfactory outcomes in the requisite number of workplace-based assessments (including multi-source feedback)
- Fellowship of The Royal College of Pathologists (FRCPath in Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology) by examination.
- acquisition of RITA (Record of In-Training Assessment) Form G (Orange Guide: A Guide to Specialist Registrar Training). (In the future dental specialties may adopt a modified version of A Guide to Postgraduate Specialty Training in the UK (The Gold Guide) in which case the RITA process may be replaced by the Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP).
1.3 Flexible training
'Less than full-time' is the term used to describe doctors and dentists undertaking training on a flexible basis, normally between five and eight sessions per week. The aim of flexible training is to provide opportunities for doctors and dentists in the NHS who are unable to work full time. Doctors and dentists can apply for flexible training if they can provide evidence that "training on a full-time basis would not be practicable for well-founded individual reasons".
Flexible trainees must accept two important principles outlined in European law (Directive 93/16/EEC):
- part-time training shall meet the same requirements (in depth and breadth) as full-time training
- the total duration and quality of part-time training of specialists must be not less than those of a full-time trainee. In other words, a part-time trainee will have to complete the minimum training time for their specialty pro rata.
For SpRs, the regulations governing flexible training are outlined in section 6 of A Guide to Specialist Registrar Training (1998) ( the 'Orange Guide' or Section 6.129- 6.138 (pp54-56) Gold Guide (2007).
Trainees must have their flexible training approved by the local Associate Postgraduate Dean for Less than full time Training before beginning their flexible training. The local Postgraduate Dental Dean may seek advice from the SAC with regard to the amended length of training.
Some trainees may wish to spend a period of time in research, either before entering Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology training or as 'Out-of-Programme Experience' (OoPE) after entering a training programme.
Research undertaken prior to entry to the training programme.
Trainees who have undertaken a period of research that includes clinical work directly relevant to the Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology curriculum, prior to entering the training programme, can have a maximum of one year approved by the SAC towards their CCST. Such trainees should normally apply for approval of this period of research at the commencement of training. In accrediting any prior research towards the award of a CCST the outcomes achieved previously will be mapped across onto those stated in the curriculum. Following completion of at least six months (whole-time equivalent) of training the trainee's educational supervisor should assess their progress to determine the suitability of their previous period of research to be counted towards the CCST. Any period of research to be counted towards the CCST should be agreed by the Programme Director, who will make a recommendation to the SAC.
Research undertaken after entry to a histopathology training programme.
Trainees who have undertaken a period of research that includes clinical work directly relevant to the Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology curriculum, after entering the training programme, can have up to one year approved by the SAC towards their CCST.
It is recommended that trainees wishing to undertake research as OoPE do so after completing a minimum of 2 years of training and after successfully passing the FRCPath Part I examination.
Trainees must have their OoPE research approved by their Postgraduate Dental Dean before beginning their research. The postgraduate dean may seek advice from the SAC with regard to the OoPE request.
Out of Programme Experience elsewhere in the UK or overseas
Some trainees who have been awarded an NTN may wish to spend a period of training in another UK or overseas Institution as OoPE after entering Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology training programme. It is recommended that trainees wishing to undertake overseas training as OoPE do so after completing a minimum of 2 years of training and after successfully passing the FRCPath Part I examination. Normally, the experience to be gained in their OoPe program will not be available in their own unit but is essential for the completion of training.
Trainees must have their OoPE overseas training approved by their Postgraduate Dental Dean before beginning their overseas training. The postgraduate dean may seek advice from the SAC with regard to the OoPE request.
1.5 Related clinical training
During their Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology training, some trainees may wish to spend a period of training in a related clinical specialty such as Oral Medicine or oncology, etc. This is acceptable and should be undertaken as OoPE. However, such a period of training - although useful to the individual trainee in broadening their understanding of the relationship between histopathology and the clinical specialties, - will not be approved by the SAC towards the requirements of the CCST. This training experience may lengthen the time taken to achieve a CCST.