Health Education England West Midlands Foundation Year One Prize Award 2018


Open Award 

The winner of the 2018 Foundation Year One Open Award is Dr Rachel Cichosz with her submission 'Centralisation of Paediatric Services: A Comparative Service Evaluation on Suspected Testicular Tortion Outcomes'. 


What made you decide to enter the award? 

I completed some work during my Foundation Year 1 looking at the effect of centralisation of paediatric services on outcomes in suspected Testicular Torsion. This is particularly relevant with the current reconfigurations in the NHS. Entering the award provided an opportunity to share my findings and highlight the positive effect of change in our local trust, in that these changes had not had a significant detrimental effect on outcomes for our patients.


What was the topic for your entry? 

While working in a Urology Department as an F1 I learnt that delays in treatment for Testicular Torsion can lead to poor outcomes, with testis viability depending primarily on ischaemia time. In our Trust, paediatric services were recently centralised to a single unit within our multi-site configuration. As a consequence of this, specialist urological surgeons called to assess testicular torsion either needed to travel between sites or request that patients be transferred urgently to the Urology Centre. Our aim was to analyse the impact of centralisation on the assessment and outcomes of patients presenting with suspected testicular torsion. The project involved using a comprehensive electronic database to conduct a comparative retrospective service evaluation on suspected testicular torsion outcomes over two 12-month periods: pre- and post-paediatric centralisation.

Although our observations are representative of our local service, results demonstrate an effective system for managing suspected testicular torsion post centralisation of paediatric services. Data specifically looking at the impact of centralisation of urology services in suspected testicular torsion remains extremely limited. However, with ongoing shifts in expertise and fragile services for the surgical management of children in general, it is important that we understand the impact of service reconfigurations on patients.


What would you say to anyone interested in entering?

When entering I did not expect to win and so I would encourage anyone who is considering it to give it a go, you never know what the outcome may be and it is an excellent opportunity to celebrate all your hard work.


Compassion Award 

The winner of the 2018 Foundation Year One Compassion Award is Dr Samuel Jack with his submission 'Everybody Needs Compassion'. 


What made you decide to enter the award? 

The reflective essay inadvertently became an excellent way to process the event and the emotions I had experienced. I found myself challenging my understanding of compassion. I realised that it was much broader than the compassion we have for our patients and their relatives. We often fail to consider the needs of ourselves and colleagues with regards to compassion. The essay highlighted the importance of recognising when a colleague is stressed, upset or frustrated and giving them the time and attention they require, because everybody needs compassion. We don’t become immune to sadness because we see it on a more regular basis. In fact, witnessing sad and distressing situations on a daily basis can cumulatively lead to compassion fatigue. This is a  state where an individual is emotionally drained by these day to day experiences. Compassion is a wonderful quality to have and is an essential quality in a doctor, but an awareness is needed of the effects it can have on an individual.


What was the inspiration for your entry? 

I was shadowing a paediatric registrar when a young boy was brought into Resus in cardiac arrest. It transpired he had been hit by a drunk driver whilst walking with his family. It was a dramatic and emotive series of events that culminated in the passing of the young boy despite the incredible efforts of the medical team.The staff were the gold standard of compassion with the way they supported the heart-broken family. I witnessed a paramedic leave the room in tears with colleagues wrapping their arms around him as he cried. The faces of the doctors in the room failed to conceal their emotion, but they returned to their duties. The series of events seemed to be over so quickly. I returned home that night and watched as the face of the young boy flashed up on the news. I was bottling up my emotions.


What would you say to anyone interested in entering?

I would recommend writing a reflective essay for the Compassion Prize. It allowed me to reflect on my understanding of compassion, how we show it and the effects it can have on us. This was the most useful of any reflection I have previously written and I am glad I did it early on in my career.


Page Updated on: 31 May 2019