SAS doctor profile: Dr Cindy Farmer

Posted 19 Nov 2018

Date: 19 Nov 2018

Author: Cindy Farmer

Dr Cindy Farmer talks through her role and experience as a SAS doctor and how she is working with us to develop a complex implant removal training pathway.

I am a Specialty Doctor in Sexual and Reproductive Health working in Bristol. At a clinical level I enjoy booked complex contraception lists and I run our tertiary referral service in complex implant removal. 

The training to achieve competency in complex removals has hitherto been poorly defined and very subjective, so in response to this I have been working with the FSRH to develop an educationally robust and standardised training pathway which hopefully, will bring with it a set of clinical standards for service provision.

This is important for both patient safety and to ensure clinicians offering this service are better supported. I hold the Dip GUM so I am also happy to manage symptomatic patients in our walk-in service.

Academically, I hold a Post graduate certificate in Medical Education. I am the Education and Training Lead for the sexual health services in Bristol and am a named Educational Supervisor. In 2015 I was nominated for a trust-level award for “excellence in teaching”. I am on the FSRH General Training Committee and have been Chair since 2017. 

Chairing FSRH committees

Being on an FSRH committee has been extremely rewarding. I have learned skills in managing meetings and handling the media through training put on by the FSRH to support its Chairs. I have also been able to utilise and implement educational theory that I learnt on my PG Cert Med Ed!

The role of a SAS doctor

I am very happy in my role as a SAS doctor. I think it is important to recognise that we are not a homogeneous group of doctors; whilst some may wish to progress through the CESR route, many others are content to remain as SAS but wish to develop and progress in their careers nevertheless. 

I am of the opinion that SAS doctors should be empowered to take on enhanced roles and additional responsibilities if that is what they would like to do. One way this might be facilitated would be through the re-opening of the Associate Specialist grade.

As SAS Tutor for my trust I have been heavily involved in local negotiations to reinstate the grade. For those that are already Associate Specialists, opening up the distribution of funds for the local clinical excellence awards scheme to eligible senior SAS doctors is another avenue we are exploring locally.

SAS Doctors are an important part of the workforce and should be appropriately represented and recognised for their contributions.

Outside of work I love spending time with my family and friends. I’m a big fan of musical theatre and I love karaoke (although I really can’t sing!).

Read more about SAS Doctors.