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Curriculum - Cardiology Training (2010, with 2016 amendments)

Curriculum - Cardiology Training (2022)

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Training Programme Director

Dr Clare Hammond


Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Trust
Thomas Drive
L14 3PE



This is a higher medical training programme starting after the completion of core medical training or acute care common stem at ST3 level, aimed at doctors who can meet the essential criteria in the person specification to enter this level of training. The programme is designed to provide the opportunities for the trainee to achieve the competencies as described in the 2009 General Internal Medicine and 2010 Cardiology curricula.

The cardiology training programme is delivered across a number of Trusts within Cheshire and Merseyside. All placements will be allocated by the Training Programme Director on behalf of the School of Medicine.

 Progress within the training programme is subject to an annual review carried out by the Educational Supervisor, Training Programme Director and members of the Specialty Training Committee (Cardiology). As well as confirming satisfactory progress, the annual assessment will allow for flexibility within the training programme tailored to suit each post holder.

The Specialty Training Scheme is a five year training programme (ST3 through to ST7), completion of which will allow the trainee to be awarded a Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT). The first two years of training (ST3 and ST4) will be based in a District General or University Hospital under the supervision of one or more cardiology consultants recognised as trainers by the GMC. During this period, there will be continued exposure to acute medicine and cardiology and the trainees will supervise acute medical takes. There will also be an introduction to all aspects of modern cardiology, in particular cardiac catheterisation, echocardiography and permanent pacemaker implantation. Throughout this period, there will be close links with the tertiary cardiac centre (Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital) and trainees will be encouraged to interact with the cardiac surgical staff and attend meetings at the hospital.

ST3 and ST4 training will be principally undertaken at one of the following hospitals: Aintree University Hospital, The Countess of Chester Hospital, East Cheshire (Macclesfield), Mid Cheshire Hospitals (Leighton), Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals, St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals (Whiston), Warrington and Halton Hospitals and Wirral University Teaching Hospital (Arrowe Park). ST5 training could also take place at Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital

After satisfactory completion of core cardiology training (ST3-5), trainees will undertake two years of advanced specialist area training, usually at Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital. During this period, there will be training in the trainee’s chosen area of interest. We offer specialist area modules in Adult Congenital Heart Disease, Advanced Rhythm Training, Heart Failure, Interventional Cardiology, Cardiac Imaging and Inherited Cardiac Conditions. Those pursuing dual accreditation with GIM will have further training in GIM at the end of ST7. 

Outline training rotations are listed below by location and year of training. The progression through training posts can be varied year to year and tailored to meet the individuals training needs. Training capacity in advanced specialist area modules is good, but there may be competitive entry into popular modules based on a transparent selection process reflecting achieved competencies, research output and technical skills.

  Post 1 2 3 4 5
1   WUTH Warrington COCH Mid Cheshire East Cheshire


All rotations will be annual in August and specific posts and training requirements will have been discussed at the annual ARCP process.



Trainees will be expected to develop a research interest throughout the training programme and retain a commitment to audit. A half day per week at all sites will be allowed for carrying out and developing research and audit. Trainees will be encouraged to publish all data and present data nationally and internationally and the extent of research will be closely followed and examined during the ARCP process. Trainees are encouraged to consider a period of out-of-programme training to pursue a higher degree, usually taken at the end of ST4 or ST5.


Regional Teaching Programme


Trainees are expected to attend the regional training programme jointly delivered by the Mersey and North Western programmes (please see below).




North Western


Training Programme Director

Dr Christopher Cassidy


Blackpool Victoria Hospital

Whinney Heys Road





The Cardiology programme runs over 5 years. The first 3 years are core training, in which the trainee gains basic cardiology experience. They should be competent in echocardiography, angiography and simple pacing as well as non-invasive cardiac investigations and assessment of cardiac patients. During this time they will have the opportunity to be exposed to angioplasty, electrophysiological procedures, cardiac MRI imaging and nuclear imaging. At the end of core training, there are subspecialty training interviews following which trainees spend the last 2 years in tertiary care left doing sub-specialty training. The subspecialty modules are in interventional cardiology, electrophysiology, adult congenital heart disease, echo, devices, heart failure, cardiac MR and cardiac CT.


Our programme consists of at least 6 months of the first 3 years in a tertiary centre and at least 2 years in secondary care. The DGH year(s) will include a significant exposure to general medicine, including general medical on-call.  In tertiary centres, there is no commitment to the general medical on-call rota but trainees will be resident on-call for cardiology, including participation in the primary PCI rota.
General Description of Rotations.

The rotations are every 6 months, although we try to keep trainees in most centres for a 1 year period prior to rotation. The exact rotations are kept fairly fluid so we can attach appropriate trainees to appropriate posts.




Women in Cardiology

It is well recognised that women are under-represented in cardiology training and consultant posts with only 13% of the consultant workforce and only 23% of applicants to ST3+ training in 2018. There are a variety of reasons for this, including the lack of female role models, concerns about the training programme being less ‘female-friendly’ than other programmes and exposure to radiation. Many trainees express concerns about being accepted into this exciting and fulfilling specialty.  In recognition of this, a mentoring scheme has been set up in the HEE NW region for medical students, junior doctors and current cardiology trainees. Whilst recognising the important role male mentors play, this scheme aims to provide informal, “off the record” advice from a female perspective. Students/trainees seeking advice on any aspect of training/work-life balance are encouraged to participate. Consultants are happy to be contacted for ‘one-off’ advice or longer term support and mentorship. For further information about the scheme, please contact Dr Rebecca Dobson (




General Internal Medicine (GIM)

For more information on GIM, please click here