Dr Michaela Gilbert – ST4
Dr Matt Penn – ST4
Dr Gareth Garrett – ST5
I am currently training as a Specialist Registrar in Forensic Psychiatry.
The speciality has strengths that appealed to me from the outset. We get to know our patients well and follow up in the long term, the patients often have particularly fascinating life stories, which are interesting and thought provoking when we think about formulation of violent offences. The most common mental disorders are psychotic disorders and personality disorders, both of which are appealing to me. Finally, we have the time and resources to fully rehabilitate patients, so we often see severe psychopathology but also recovery, which can be extremely rewarding.
I feel lucky to be part of the East Midlands scheme. We have access to low, medium and high secure services as well as a variety of prisons all within geographical reach. The work is varied to include assessments of patients around the country at different stages in their journey through the criminal justice system, as well as inpatient work.
There are opportunities to explore any area you wish using special interest sessions which are fully supported. Training is what you make of it, but the programme will do everything possible to support you.
Dr Ahmed Abouelghit – ST5
This is my second year as Specialty Registrar in Forensic Psychiatry (ST5). I have never regretted choosing this specialty as a career pathway. Before joining this scheme, I worked as a staff grade doctor in one of the medium secure unit in the North East. This is when my fascination with forensic psychiatry started. What really attracted me to forensic psychiatry is the vast variety of experiences that a trainee can have, which include, but not limited to, working in different levels of secure hospitals, working in prison as a visiting psychiatrist, and working with the criminal justice system as an expert witness.
As an East Midland forensic trainee, I was given the opportunity to spend a year at Rampton Hospital which is a one of three high secure hospitals in the UK. In Rampton hospital I have had a unique opportunity to work with patients with very complicated needs and exceptionally high risk profiles. Although my placement was in the personality disorder service, I didn’t waste the chance to have some experiences in forensic LD.
I have started my current placement at Arnold Lodge just a couple of months ago. During that short time I have found the consultants very supportive and encouraging. The variety of the work and the quality of the supervision are exceptional.
East Midland Forensic Psychiatry Scheme has a strong link with Nottingham University which is a one of the top universities in the country, and a reputable institute like the Institute of Mental Health. This has given the opportunity to get involved in a big, multi centre research project as a special interest.
Dr Chibueze Egemonye – ST5
I completed my Core Training Programme in Psychiatry with the London Deanery at East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT). I enjoyed both the experience, the challenges and diversity offered by the ELFT training scheme. I gained experience in General Adult, Old Age, Community, Child and Adolescent (CAMHS), Substance Misuse and Forensic Psychiatry. Due to my interest in Forensic Psychiatry, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to visit the Old Bailey twice, first as organised by my clinical supervisor and subsequently organised another visit for my fellow Core Trainees.
I have consistently found Forensic Psychiatry including the opportunity to further explore relationship between offending, mental disorder and the law intriguing. In forensic psychiatry, we have the opportunity to get better understanding of our patients as they are usually under our care for long periods. I have had the opportunity to work in Rampton and currently at the Regional Medium Secure Unit. The range of our patients cuts across the most common mental disorders, with complex co-morbidities and a combination of both.
We also have the opportunity to understand the Mental Health Act in detail including Part 3 of the MHA.
The training scheme is flexible and provide opportunity to combine clinical work with special interest sessions. I have found the East Midlands training Programme to be quite supportive of their trainees.
Dr Olawesun Adebambo – ST5
Dr Thirumalaikumar Chandran – ST5
Dr Leo McSweeney – ST6
I completed my Psychiatry Core Training Programme in the Oxford Deanery and gained experience in a wide range of specialities including Older Adult, General Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMHS) all of which I greatly enjoyed.
However, it was Forensic Psychiatry that I found to be most fulfilling and varied. For the trainee this speciality provides a range of fascinating and challenging opportunities. These include: the assessment and management of mentally disordered offenders; considering the relationship between mental disorder and criminal behaviour; working closely with criminal justice agencies such as the Crown Prosecution Service and Probation Services.
I have recently commenced work as an ST4 at Arnold Lodge, Medium Secure Unit in Leicester. At this early stage I have already had the opportunity to be involved in the assessment of sentenced prisoners, medico-legal report writing and to attend Crown Court hearings.
I have found East Midlands Scheme to be very supportive of their trainees and encourage them to develop skills in many other areas including leadership and management. I plan to use my weekly special interest session to further my interest in medical education and hope to undertake an MSc qualification in 2016.
Dr Trevor Gedeon – ST6