RGUC Newsletter

September 2023


This newsletter updates members of the Dudley Group Undergraduate Teaching Academy and medical students about projects and resources being developed to supplement learning and medical education. We aim to publish an edition every quarter.


In this edition…

  • Key diary dates

  • Welcome message from the Head of the Academy

  • Staff Spotlight – Clinical Teaching Fellows

  • Ron Grimley Memorial Awards

  • University of Birmingham  fourth year curriculum changes

  • Health and Wellbeing

  • OSCE  dates 2024

  • Photographic and video content around the Trust 

  • Top Tips for Students

  • RGUC Simulation Centre Updates

  • Update from Clinical Skills

  • Junior Doctor Strikes

  • IPE Plenary Day

  • Mask wearing update

Key Diary Dates

University of Birmingham (UoB) semester dates

  • Third year students’ start dateThursday 31st August 

  • Fourth year students’ start date – Tuesday 29th August 

  • Fifth year AIP students’ start date – Monday 4th September 

  • Fifth year OBG & paediatric students’ start date – Tuesday 5th September 

Aston University semester dates

  • Fourth year SSC students’ start dateTuesday 29th August 2023

  • Fourth year cancer care students’ start dateMonday 25th September 2023

  • Fifth year students’ start date – Monday 18th September 2023  

IPE Plenary Day

  • Tuesday 7th November 

Clinical Teaching Academy (CTAC) Meetings

  • Tuesday 7th November 2023 
  • Tuesday 5th December 2023


The CTAC meetings have now returned to face-to-face format, and these will take place in the Undergraduate Centre. However, a Microsoft Teams link will be provided for attendees unable to join in person. 

Welcome message from the Head of Academy, Professor Atiq-ur Rehman

Dear medical students, 

It is with great pleasure that we extend a warm welcome to each of you as you start with us at The Dudley Group.  

This marks the beginning of an invaluable learning experience, one where you will have the opportunity to not only expand your medical knowledge but also see the impact you can make on the lives of patients and their families. Here at Dudley, we are committed to providing you with a comprehensive and enriched learning environment that encourages growth, innovation and collaboration. 

Our dedicated team of educators, clinicians and support staff is here to guide and help you develop into the healthcare professionals you aspire to become. 

Throughout your placement, you will have access to state-of-the-art educational resources, a wealth of clinical opportunities and a network of experienced mentors.  

We are delighted to have you with us on your hospital placement and we look forward to supporting your growth, learning and success. 

Professor Atiq-ur Rehman
Head of Teaching Academy

Staff Spotlight
Clinical Teaching Fellows

Dr Husein Alghurairy

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I’m the lead CTF for Aston University and SGU students. In 2019, I proudly earned my MBChB degree from AL-Qadisiya Medical University, then completed my foundation year at Al-Diwaniya Teaching Hospital. This brief journey in medicine led me to embrace the realm of education, first at St. George’s University (Northumbria Campus), and now, here at Russells Hall. To me, teaching is more than just a profession; it’s a pathway to continuous learning and growth, a means to expand my field of knowledge and that’s what really attracts me to it!

Now, outside of my professional life, my days are enriched by the delightful presence of Lola, a four-legged friend who adds a touch of whimsy and warmth to my world. When I’m not at work, you’ll often find me playing or watching football and of course, exploring new destination! Please, don’t hesitate, say hi and share a moment of conversation anytime!

Dr Kirandeep Bhavra

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I’ve just completed my foundation training in the West Midlands after graduating from the University of Leicester. I’m one of the UoB third year leads and a joint fifth year lead for paediatrics. As part of my role, I will also be getting involved in projects with the media and education team as a digital fellow. Looking forward to meeting you all!

Dr Jacob Reynolds

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I graduated from University of Birmingham in 2020 and did both Foundation Years in Walsall Manor Hospital. I then took an ‘F3’ year of locums and teaching before taking on my Clinical Teaching Fellow role here at RHH.
During this year I will also be involved in some digital projects as part of my role as a Digitial Fellow. Originally from Yorkshire and play tennis if anyone up for a game.

Dr Eby Nwokedi

Clinical  Teaching Fellow

I am one of the fifth year leads for the University of Birmingham. I graduated from King’s College London and completed my foundation training years at Russells Hall Hospital. My aim is to bring in some ideas from my medical school and my experience teaching at Russells Hall Hospital to create interactive and innovative teaching methods. I am also one of the Wellbeing Champions with a strict open-door policy. I am happy to help you all. Looking forward to the year ahead.

Dr Maryam Rafique

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I did one of my foundation years at Russells Hall and thoroughly enjoyed it here. I’m currently in my FY3 year and have an interest in medical education. I was also inspired by the CTFs I had as a medical student, hence I applied for a CTF role. I am looking forward to working with and meeting everyone over the next year!

Dr Kathryn Brammer

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I graduated from the University of Southampton in 2021, and completed my foundation training at University Hospitals Birmingham. I’ve returned to Russells Hall as a clinical teaching fellow having been here previously as a hospital volunteer in sixth form and met the CTFs when I worked as part of the medical student workforce from March-May 2020 in the first wave of the COVID pandemic. I am looking forward to teaching this year (mainly third year medical specialities and fifth year paediatrics) alongside being a wellbeing champion and working in MECU. 

Dr Marie Tolan

Clinical Teaching Fellow

I graduated from UoB in 2021 and completed my foundation training in the West Midlands working at Russells Hall and Walsall Manor. I am one of the fifth year leads and have a special interest in obstetrics and gynaecology. My aim it to make the teaching sessions fun and to ensure that you are well prepared FY1 doctors by the end of your placement! I will be working with some of the other CTFs as a Wellbeing Champion. So, if you have any issues or concerns, please come and find me!

Dr Shah Bakht Aftab

Clinical Teaching Fellow

My journey in this hospital commenced in August. Before embarking on my current path, I practiced as a 1st-year trainee in surgery at a public hospital in Pakistan. There, I was exposed to the rigors of dealing with heavy casualties and complex trauma injuries, which further solidified my commitment to the field.

I received my medical training at Army Medical College in Pakistan, where I also served as the President of the Debates and Literary Society. At present, beyond the hospital, I proudly manage “Mera Ghar Orphanage” in Pakistan, offering underprivileged girls the care, love, and opportunities they deserve.

I am committed to contributing to creating a healthy learning environment and good experience for the students coming to RHH this year.

Ron Grimley Memorial Awards

The Ron Grimley memorial awards is an annual event open to all clinical professions at the Trust. The first and second place case presentations from third year medical students who attend the Trust on placement are also entered into the undergraduate award category for inclusion in the ceremony and prize giving.

This year’s awards received a broad spectrum of interesting submissions. Unfortunately, due to low staff availability on a strike day, the presentation ceremony was not able to take place.

Quality improvement project award

Masa Shammout’s entry covered a quality improvement project looking at the rate of non-attendance in the maxillofacial clinic minor procedures room. This was awarded 1st prize of £250.

Imogen Heaton won 2nd prize for her highly commended in-depth analysis into why DKA cases have increased at the Trust, which found that cases referred to the diabetes team had more than doubled between 2018 and 2022. 

Clinical project award for non-medical staff

Jayne Burness from the Breast Screening team won 1st prize for her submission that outlined a project to produce a series of information videos for deaf patients. The intention was to increase screening appointment uptake in this marginalised group by featuring deaf service users in the videos and ensuring they were involved in the production process.

Undergraduate award

Dinula Gomes was awarded 1st prize of £200 for their third year case presentation entitled ‘A case of Adenomyomatosis’.

The runner up prize was awarded to Luqmaan Rashid for his case presentation on Asthma Exacerbation and Excessive Dynamic Airway Collapse.

Congratulations to everyone above. We’d also like to say a huge thank you to those who took the time to make a submission to these awards.

The 2024 Ron Grimley memorial awards will take place in June. Information on how to make a submission will be released early next year.

University of Birmingham fourth year curriculum changes

A brief overview of the UoB fourth year curriculum changes, which have been implemented for 2023.

The following content has been removed from the fourth-year curriculum and is now delivered in third year:

  • Cardiology
  • Diabetes
  • Endocrinology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology
  • Medicine of the older adult
  • Respiratory
  • CBM long-term conditions

The following content has been absorbed from the third-year curriculum and is now delivered in fourth year in the SPM rotations:

  • Rheumatology – SPM B
  • Haematology/Oncology – SPM A
  • Renal – SPM A

The following content has been absorbed from the fifth-year curriculum and is now delivered in fourth year:

  • Additional prescribing content
  • Additional general surgical content

Placement duration changes:

  • 41-week year, with 25 weeks on placement
  • 5x 5-week rotations

Surgery and Perioperative Care:

  • ENT – 1 week
  • Urology – 1 week
  • Anaesthetics and perioperative care – 3 weeks. This is where the main changes have occurred. Students now spend longer on this specialty and are required to follow a patient pathway from pre op through to post op, and experience ‘complex’ and frail patients. This should include working in out-of-hours sessions. Additional general surgical content relating for breast/GI surgery is now also included.

Health and Wellbeing

We take the wellbeing of all medical students seriously at this Trust. We encourage you to speak up about any concerns you may have, be it big or small. Please select the poster to find out who to speak to about concerns.  

You can also speak in confidence to clinical teaching fellow, Josh Tulley, who is the wellbeing champion for junior doctors and medical students. 

OSCE dates 2024

Dates for the UoB OSCEs have been released for 2024 and are listed in the table below. Year four Aston University OSCE dates are yet to be confirmed, but we anticipate they will fall within week commencing 8th July 2024.

We would appreciate it if all staff / CTAC members could hold these in their diaries. Diary invites will be sent out to assist us with examiner recruitment nearer the time. Please note that supporting the OSCEs is now part of the annual academy appraisal process.

Year 3 – 14th, 15th and 16th May 2024
Year 4 – 16th, 17th and 18th April 2024
Year 5 – 29th April – 3rd May 2024

Winter Vaccinations

The Trust’s winter vaccination programme was launched on 12th September. All Trust staff, volunteers and medical students can now access the flu vaccine.

There will be flu vaccine pods located in the main reception of Russells Hall Hospital for two weeks from 7am on the 12th September. Simply head down to get your vaccine. No booking is required.

Following this, there will be a roaming team stationed on each floor at Russells Hall Hospital and we will be also visiting our community sites.

The Trust will also be rolling out the COVID booster from mid-October onwards.

Keep an eye on the Hub and In the Know over the coming weeks for more information around the flu vaccination and COVID booster and the times and locations for when a vaccine team will be near you

Photographic and video content around the Trust

We have recently received queries from medical students regarding obtaining video and photographic content within the Trust for personal purposes. Simon Ashby from the Communications team outlines the current stance below.

The world of communications has changed so much in the last few decades and the rise of video as a marketing tool as grown at a rapid rate with no signs of slowing down.

Over 50% of companies now say that video is their most valuable content and in 2022 an astonishing 82% of global internet traffic came via video. Video is our present and with the rise of immersive experiences and virtual reality it will almost certainly be our future.

We also know that the public have an increased trust in individual or personal testimonies and a decreasing trust in brands or businesses corporate messages. People want to hear from real people when they are looking at everything from where to work, eat, shop, holiday and of course access healthcare.

All of this means that here at the Dudley Group, we absolutely welcome our staff producing their own video content as a way to promote their profession, the Trust and the wider NHS.

These videos can be shared with us centrally for us to use on our digital communications platforms or posted via our own social media accounts.

But we must remember that with videos and photographs, we need to stay within the rules that guide us. Below are links to guidelines that you must stick to, and these include colleague consent, ensuring no private information is captured on your videos (even in the background) and that our uniform policy is adhered to throughout filming.

Top Tips for Students

We hope that you are settling in to your placements at Russells Hall. Sometimes it can be helpful to hear how previous students navigated their time on placement. We interviewed Alys, Jess and Josh about their experiences on placement with us during semester one last year. They talked about how to get the most from clinical placements, surviving OSCEs and navigating the hospital.

All of their tips and insights can be watched by heading over to our TikTok. Visit

If you would like to feature in an upcoming clip for social media, whether it is about your experiences as a student on placement, or you would like to contribute to another aspect of our social media output, we’d be keen to hear from you. Simply email media.team@rguc.co.uk.

“What one piece of advice would you give to students on the first few weeks on placement?”

RGUC Simulation Centre

A warm welcome to Dr Arran Arnell , who has recently joined the team as a simulation fellow. Arran will be working alongside colleagues in anaesthetics and intensive care, as well as working within the simulation centre. The centre now has two simulation fellows. Arran will be working with Dr John Eya and the simulation team to help create and develop our simulation-based education programmes.

As the new education year begins, we are busy with many simulation programmes. However, if you think simulation-based education (SBE) may help your team, colleagues or department please feel free to contact our simulation centre lead, Laura Jones, to discuss if SBE is the right modality for your needs. You can email Laura at: laura.jones142@nhs.net

Congratulations are in order

Laura Jones has completed her degree, and in October she is due to start a masters in health and medical simulation at the University of Hertfordshire. We wish her all the very best of luck with her continued educational journey.

Braiden Fellows  – Simulation Technician

Braiden is starting his City and Guilds level four teaching certificate at Dudley College in September, and we wish him all the very best of luck too.

Photo of clinical skills lab

Update from Clinical Skills

Welcome to all our students from Aston University, University of Birmingham, and St George’s University who now join us for semester 1.

Throughout the summer months, the clinical education team has facilitated the second-year hospital preparation course for University of Birmingham medical students. We also supported the medical work experience programme, which ran in June and July. Furthermore, the team has facilitated the training for ultrasound guided peripheral cannulation, LapAR™ laparoscopy training sessions for core surgical trainees, and several clinical skills courses for external companies.

In November, the team will be hosting the second two-day Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS®) course. The course consists of online pre-tests, core content lectures, demonstrations, interactive discussions, practical moulage and post course multiple choice tests. It is designed to provide doctors with the opportunity to advance their knowledge and skills in the systematic treatment of life-threatening injuries in trauma patients.

Welcome to our new clinical educator, Nila Patel, who joins the team with an extensive background in neonatal and paediatric nursing.

We would like to wish our colleague Stephanie Robinson all the best as she enters her maternity leave.

Junior Doctor Strikes

As you will be aware, both the junior (20th – 22nd September and 2nd – 5th October) and senior (19th – 20th September and 2nd – 5th October) doctors are due to be on strike.  The strikes will, obviously, cause disruption in the normal working of hospital and general practice placements. 

We want you to attend your placement as normal during this time. There will still be plenty of valuable opportunities to learn and enhance your skills.  Remember that ED, acute medicine and acute surgery as well as CCU and ICU will all be operating normally. 

The heads of academy in all the Trusts have unanimously supported our plan for you to attend during the strikes, so they and the undergraduate co-ordinators will be there to support you.

IPE Plenary Day

As always, we are proud to deliver a comprehensive programme of interprofessional education (IPE). This years’ annual IPE plenary day will be held on Tuesday 7th November. The event focuses on four main themes. Namely…

  • Team working
  • Patient safety
  • Non-technical skills
  • Humanfactors

We have been running this event on an annual basis for over 10 years. The aim is to heighten the students’ appreciation of safe and effective practice. This creates opportunities to explore ways in which different professions can work more closely together to respond more fully and more effectively to the multiple and ever increasingly complex needs of the population.

Mask Wearing Update

Due to an increasing incidence of COVID-19, staff and students in several departments have been asked to return to mask wearing, and patients will be offered a mask.

These areas include:

  • Emergency Department
  • Renal
  • C4 Georgina Unit
  • AMU assessment
  • AMU monitoring
  • AMU 1
  • AMU 2
  • Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC)
  • Emergency Surgical Hub

The Trust will continue to monitor incidences of COVID-19 in all areas and will advise if there are any further updates to mask wearing guidance. Please continue to follow hand hygiene protocols.

and finally...

Most of the videos within this newsletter are available on our social media platforms, along with many more useful insights not featured here. We are regularly posting new clips that will offer useful advice on OSCEs, as well as tips and resources to help you prepare for them.


Please visit our Linktree for more information on all our social platforms using the button below:

Would you like to contribute?

Do you have any news or updates that you would like to see in the next edition of this newsletter? 
If so, please emails us at media.team@rguc.co.uk

RGUC Newsletter |  Designed and produced by RGUC Digital Media Team for Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust   |   ©copyright 2023 |  www.rguc.co.uk   |   September Edition  |  September 2023