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Surgeon. 2011;9 Suppl 1:S38-9. doi: 10.1016/j.surge.2010.11.003. Epub 2011 Feb 18.

Developing a human factors and patient safety programme at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

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National Surgical Training Centre, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 123 St Stephens Green, Dublin 2, Ireland.


Personal skills are now recognised to be important components of effective medical practice. These skills are explicit in the CANMED competencies from Canada, the recommendations of the ACGME from the United States and the recently revised 'Tomorrow's Doctors' paper from the Medical Council in the United Kingdom. The recommended core competencies which encompass personal skills in these international manifestos highlight a paradigm shift in a system which emphasised technical skills and knowledge to a recognition of the key role played by personal skills.

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