The FMMI and the Defence Forces Medical Corps are committed to ensuring the trainee in military medicine receives a valuable training experience that adequately prepares them to function as a primary care practitioner to both military and civilian populations.
The Faculty of Military Medicine of Ireland (FMMI) was established in June 2012 with the goals of achieving formal recognition for the specialty of Military Medicine and establishing a training programme in this specialty. In November 2014 the FMMI submitted its case for Recognition of a New Specialist Discipline in Military Medicine to the Irish Medical Council. Following a period of public consultation and international expert review, the new specialist discipline of Military Medicine was formally recognized by the IMC in October 2015. The Programme for Postgraduate Training and Education in Military Medicine was developed by the Curriculum Sub-Committee of the Faculty of Military Medicine of Ireland (FMMI) in association with the Irish College of General Practitioners (ICGP) and was formally endorsed by the IMC for the inaugural intake of Military Medicine trainees in July 2012.
The Faculty of Military Medicine of Ireland (FMMI) has unequivocally stated its contention that general practice (GP) constitutes the single most significant element of military medical practice. This assertion is based on the congruence of the professional characteristics that define both disciplines, which include in the case of military medicine (MM):
- The generalist nature of the role, and the requirement to operate across diverse settings.
- A focus on the health and welfare of the individual soldier.
Provision of Primary Care services to members of the Defence Forces.
- Being an invested member of the military community.
- Being a leader within the medical team.
- Being cognizant at all times of the impact of his or her surroundings on the type of care provided.
- Demonstrating a keen sense of cultural awareness.
- Advocating for those who are vulnerable.
- Promoting health among the military and wider population.
- Educating fellow soldiers.
- Engaging in systematic, reflective and lifelong learning.
The following principles have guided and shaped the development of the training programme in military medicine:
- All elements of general practice training are faithfully observed over the course of the training programme, not only in terms of the content, but also in the time allocated for delivery in the various educational settings.
- Military medicine does not exist in isolation. Two certificates of satisfactory completion of specialist training (CSCST) will be required; one from the ICGP, and the other from the FMMI in order to attain the full dual specialty qualification.
- Military medicine, like general practice, is a generalist discipline and the core curriculum and training programme reflects this broad base of knowledge, skills and attitudes.
The core curriculum of specialist training in military medicine is composed of the following elements:
- General practice (Irish College of General Practitioners core curriculum)
- Military medicine. This includes a specific module on Military Primary Care which is the largest single additional module of the core curriculum, expanding on the themes developed in the ICGP core curriculum.
Initial Specialist Training follows a common pathway with existing GP training programmes. Trainees in MM have a small additional commitment during this period which is covered by the NCHD educational leave allowance.
Higher Specialist Training is conducted over 3 years; 2 years for general practice training and one additional with full focus on military medicine.
Military medicine trainees are fully integrated with their civilian counterparts in a parent GP scheme (TCD). This will ensure an enduring influence is exerted by those in civilian general practice, and grounds the evolving values of trainees in both civilian and military contexts.