Celebrating 10 years of Endoscopy Training in Wales

10 years on from the initial Welsh Assembly investment in Endoscopy Training WIMAT takes a brief look back at the success of the Endoscopy Training Programme in Wales.

In 2006 Welsh Assembly government funded a five year programme to set up Basic Endoscopy Training to meet the training needs as set by the JAG to introduce a Bowel Cancer Screening Programme. Dr Neil Hawkes heads up the scheme as clinical lead.

Establishing the Training

Training in Wales pre-funding included an annual introductory day on Basic Endoscopy held at WIMAT and the JAG Colonoscopy course also run once a year in Swansea. 2007 saw the first JAG Basic Upper GI Course, Advanced Skills in Colonoscopy and JAG Therapeutic Upper GI Endoscopy Course run at WIMAT as well as establishing the North Wales Endoscopy Training centre. By the end of 2007 Wales was the only Training centre in the UK to be providing an Endoscopy training pathway from F1 – Consultants.

Developing Training to Address Training Needs

In November 2008 WIMAT were the first centre to address the pre- ST3 training need for Endoscopy. Many Gastroenteology and Surgical Trainees were unable to learn how to scope until ST3. How do you know if a career in Gastroenteology is for you if you have never picked up a scope? And to address some of the basic scoping training needs before ST3, F2 – CT2 trainees can come along for the day and learn some basic skills with the scope. Trainees can then make a more informed choice for ST3 the standard of skills for the new ST3 trainees are improved.

Innovation in Endoscopy Training

Developed by the WIMAT technical Team in 2008-2009, porcine Upper GI and Colon models are now the standard recognised by the JAG for Endoscopy and Colonoscopy Training and are outsourced through the UK to 10 other training centres. The models were subjects of several scientific research projects producing papers published between 2011-2013.

Polypectomy Training – The JAG standard

The first JAG Polypectomy course was piloted at WIMAT in 2011 using the WIMAT Colon model before being rolled out to the rest of the UK as the JAG standard.

Taking our skills around the word

The British Society of Gastroenterology have provided funding for the WIMAT team and local teaching staff to travel to Bangladesh (2015) and Iraq (2013) to teach and transfer skills, using the WIMAT FLAME Models.


Endoscopy Nurse Training

Currently ENDO1, ENDO2 and ENDO3 courses, which have been developed in Wales, serve as the three training stages for Endoscopy Nurses.


The most prominent recent development has been the SPRINT training programme.

Ten years on

Ten Years on since the initial project started and five years after the central funding stopped, the training remains and supports 15 JAG courses a year training over 100 people per year and improving the standards of Endoscopy Skills across Wales. The Programme has trained well over 1,000 delegates and the standard of teaching goes from strength to strength.

Wales is unique in that it has such expertise in the area and nearly all trusts are involved in delivering training making it a truly inclusive programme that serves and benefits the whole of Wales.

Want to find out more? You can browse our Endoscopy Training Programme courses here


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