SOX (Support on Exams)

In August 2021 HEE North East and North Cumbria will launch the RCA/CSA SOX programme. This innovative programme was developed by two CSA Examiners within HEE North West. The programme was originally designed to support those on an extension to pass their CSA exam. The programme has had huge success.

The programme will be offered to all trainees in this area with an RCA/preexisting CSA exam failure. The programme is supportive and works with both the trainer and the trainee to maximise exam success.

A team of specially trained SOX Educators have been given access to the CSA 14Fish Toolkit. There are useful resources on the Toolkit together with an explanation about the programme. The consultation resources are useful in supporting trainee’s in reviewing their consultations. There are also practical tips for both the trainer and the trainee.

The SOX programme works on the principle of the 5 main reasons why trainees pass the RCA. During the SOX tutorial the trainee will receive personalised feedback in all five domains and be given a plan of what to work on. 

How does it work?

-The trainee is contacted after an RCA exam failure and invited to the programme and to attend a SOX Trainee day. Their trainer will be copied into this email.

What happens on the SOX Trainee day?

-The trainee attends a one-day course.

-The course gives an outline of the SOX programme and resources.

-The trainee completes a questionnaire before they attend. They will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns about the exam with the facilitators on the day.

-The delegates all watch a video of a recorded consultation and map it against the RCA SOX templates. They then discuss their reflections in small groups with a facilitator.

-Following this they role play 4 cases in small groups with role players. Each delegate will have at least one opportunity to role play a case first. Feedback is given by their facilitator.

What happens after the SOX Trainee day?

-The trainee is then matched with their SOX Educator. SOX Educators are experienced GP trainers, TPDs or regional RCA Examiners. They have all been trained in the SOX programme.

-The trainee is then asked to share 3 recent consultations with their SOX Educator and Trainer. These consultations must not be used as submissions for the RCA.       

-The RCA SOX Educator then contacts the trainee and trainer to arrange a mutually convenient time to hold the SOX tutorial.

-These tutorials have the most impact if they are conducted at least 3 months before a planned sitting to allow time for the trainee to reflect and make the necessary changes.

What happens in the SOX tutorial?

The tutorial is designed to be supportive to both the trainer and the trainee. The videos should be watched by the trainer, trainee and SOX Educator before the tutorial and reflected on, using the 14Fish SOX RAG rating. This can be found in the online resources. The trainee will have been introduced to this on their SOX trainee day.

The SOX educator will have reviewed the trainee’s e-portfolio, the trainee’s questionnaire and the videos before the tutorial. They tutorial is held with both the trainee and trainer present. There will be discussions around any previous issues with the exam, preparation and the trainee’s readiness to sit. The videos will be reviewed and discussed, particularly focusing around consultations skills and ‘Consulting like a GP’. The SOX Educator will complete a feedback form of the recommendations. This will be shared with the trainer and trainee and then uploaded onto the Educator Notes section of the e-portfolio.

The feedback will give recommendations and clear advice on areas to work on with practical suggestions on how this can be done.

 

For more information or if you would like to be involved in the SOX programme, please contact rachel.hardy@hee.nhs.uk or natalie.hawkrigg@hee.nhs.uk