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Survey study of trends in adult nephrology advanced training in Australia and New Zealand.
Yaxley J, Campbell SB, Gray NA, Viecelli AK. Survey study of trends in adult nephrology advanced training in Australia and New Zealand. Internal Medicine Journal. 2022 Feb 1; 52(2):206-213.
There has been considerable growth in nephrology advanced trainee numbers in Australia and New Zealand, with uncertain effects on clinical experience, competence and employment outcomes.
To review the perceived adequacy and temporal trends of advanced training in nephrology in Australia and New Zealand by evaluating training experiences, personal views on important aspects of training and nephrology, career paths and early employment outcomes.
An online survey was distributed to members of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Nephrology through email in December 2020. Responses were sought from current trainees and from nephrologists qualifying since 2014. Likert scale proportions were calculated and group comparisons made using the Chi-squared test.
A total of 88 participants returned the survey yielding a response rate of 32%, with a representative sample of trainees and consultants from across Australia and New Zealand. Training was reported as adequate in most aspects of clinical nephrology, although 88% of respondents felt poorly prepared for entering private practice and 61% reported inadequate training in kidney histopathology. Exposure to clinical procedures was variable, with adequate training in percutaneous kidney biopsy, but mostly inadequate training in dialysis access insertion. Sixty-nine percent of nephrologists completed their advanced training entirely in large urban centres and 85% worked in an urban area after training. Only 23% of consultants were engaged in full-time clinical employment in their first-year post-training and 78% were undertaking at least one of dual specialty training or a higher degree by research. Demand for subspecialty fellowships was high.
Trainees and nephrologists in Australia and New Zealand are currently satisfied with their training in most aspects of nephrology; however, some clinical experiences are perceived as inadequate and early career paths after advanced training are increasingly diverse.