The educational environment for training in intensive care medicine: structures, processes, outcomes and challenges in the European region

J.D. Wilde, J.F. Bion, CoBaTrICE Collaboration, Sigita Kazūne (Member of the Working Group)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To characterise the training environment in ICM across Europe, with a particular focus on factors influencing competency-based training.

METHOD: A cross-sectional web-based survey completed by the national coordinator for the CoBaTrICE (Competency-Based Training in Intensive Care medicinE) programme in each of 28 European countries.

RESULTS: Since the last survey in 2004, 50% of EU countries have modified their training programmes. Seven have already adopted the CoBaTrICE programme since its completion in 2006. Multidisciplinary access to ICM training ('supraspeciality' model) is available in 57%, most commonly as a 2-year training programme. National examinations are held by 26 (93%); in 24 (86%) this is a mandatory exit exam; ten use the European Diploma of Intensive Care (EDIC). A formal national system for quality assurance of ICM training exists in only 18 (64%) countries. National standards for approving hospitals as training centres vary widely. In 29% there is no designated specialist with responsibility for training at the local level. Time for teaching was cited as inadequate by 93% of respondents; only 21% of trainers receive contractual recognition for their work. In 39% there is no protected teaching time for trainees. Half of countries surveyed have no formal system for workplace-based assessment of competence of trainees.

CONCLUSIONS: There is considerable diversity in pedagogic structures, processes and quality assurance of ICM across Europe. National training organisations should develop common standards for quality assurance, health systems need to invest in educator support, and the EU should facilitate harmonisation by recognising ICM as a multidisciplinary speciality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1575-1583
Number of pages9
JournalIntensive Care Medicine
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Accreditation
  • Clinical Competence
  • Competency-Based Education/organization & administration
  • Critical Care
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Educational Measurement
  • Europe
  • Health Personnel/education
  • Humans
  • Inservice Training/organization & administration

Field of Science*

  • 3.2 Clinical medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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