Why did I choose gastroenterology and why would I recommend it?
Dr Philip J Smith, SpR in gastroenterology, London (ST4)
Gastroenterology is one of the most diverse and exciting specialties available to the budding physician who not only relishes the prospect of looking after acutely sick and chronically unwell patients, but also enjoys the challenge of carrying out technical procedures that are sometimes very demanding.
Some specialists deal with a single organ but gastroenterologists manage patients with disorders of the liver, intestines, stomach, oesophagus, pancreas and gallbladder – in short, this is a specialty that is too varied to let you become bored! Having said that, there is 'scope' to become highly specialised in an area of gastroenterology that appeals to you. Either way, you will find that every day is different and dynamic, and this will keep you on your toes.
Gastroenterology has grown faster than any other major specialty, and ongoing scientific and technological developments in this field mean that you are always acquiring new skills and extending your knowledge.
To be a gastroenterologist, you need to: be adaptable and deal with rapidly changing situations; be energetic and enthusiastic (as well as resilient) to cope with life and death situations; be interested in managing patients with both serious and complex chronic diseases and, most importantly, be a team player.
More than any other specialty, gastroenterologists are constantly interacting with other healthcare professionals as part of multidisciplinary teams – from surgeons, to histopathologists, oncologists, dieticians, nurse endoscopists, radiologists and many more. In short, if all of the above excites you, as it did with me, then gastroenterology is the specialty for you.
Welcome to the BSG Taster Membership Microsite!
The BSG has re-launched its Taster Membership scheme to promote Gastroenterology to aspiring medical students and all junior trainees pre-ST3. We are looking to attract students, foundation doctors and Core medical trainees who show enthusiasm for gastroenterology by participation in audit, research SSU's or other gastroenterology related projects. Benefits of this scheme include access to a tailored microsite on the BSG website, with educational content, political commentary and an informal mentoring scheme (supported by the BSG Trainee section). Substantially reduced conference rates are available for BSG scientific meetings and submission of abstracts to the BSG scientific meeting is actively encouraged. To apply go to the members area and complete the online application form. Cost is minimal (£15pa). The support of a BSG member is needed to join the Society and their BSG membership number should be included on your application (this could be a gastroenterologist who is your educational/clinical supervisor or a supervising gastroenterologist for your clinical attachment, SSU or foundation post). After your first payment of £15 all future payments will be taken by direct debit.
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