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The RANZCO VTP and Training Network Information

RANZCO’s Vocational Training Program (VTP) comprises basic and advanced training that is delivered through various training networks. Each network comprises multiple training posts, usually in teaching hospitals and occasionally large private practices.

The central curriculum is set by RANZCO and each trainee who completes the program emerges as a comprehensive general ophthalmologist. In addition to the clinical and medical skills and expertise, the VTP incorporates a range of skills across professionalism, ethics and communication based on the CANMeds framework.

All RANZCO training posts are required to deliver training to the same standards, however, how it is delivered varies depending on the conditions in each network and training post. RANZCO reviews each training post on average every three years to ensure it continues to deliver training to RANZCO’s standards. Trainees are encouraged to provide feedback on their training experiences to RANZCO every time they submit Term Supervisor Assessment reports to ensure the best possible training is being delivered. Trainees and trainers are supported to upskill their education, mentoring and counselling capabilities.

The following guides have been approved by the Director of Training at each network. They are current for the 2023 trainee intake.

Your guide to the New Zealand Training Network

The New Zealand Training Network comprises 30 training posts, with 18 located in the metro and 12 in regional locations.

In 2021, there were 28.5 trainees in the New Zealand network, with six starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the larger training networks administered by the College.

The first year of training

The first year of training can be challenging due to the rigours of learning and the need to be on-call. Pre-vocational work experience in ophthalmology is highly desirable, as trainees are required to provide a wide range of ophthalmology services early in training. First year trainees can commence their rotation at either urban or non-urban training posts.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the New Zealand Training Network should note:

  1. the NZ Network is focused on long-term workforce sustainability to address maldistribution in ophthalmic service provision in both geographical and subspecialty areas, and
  2. pre-vocational work experience in ophthalmology is essential and highly desirable to be attained in a New Zealand cultural context.

The New Zealand Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the following weightings to those outcomes:

ItemRANZCO weightingNZ Network weighting
CV review32 pts62 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
8 pts
Rural
8 pts
2 pts
Scholar
8 pts
12 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
36 pts*
Other attributes
4 pts
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
11 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
2 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts7.5 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts25 pts
NZ Interview20 pts**

*Ophthalmic experience is reassessed by NZ Selection panel following central MMI
**The NZ network typically conducts a separate four-station MMI in July each year. Candidates can attend by videoconferencing facilities.

The Network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated New Zealand as a preferred training network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview.

Your guide to the Prince of Wales Hospital (PoWH) Training Network

The PoWH Training Network comprises nine training posts, with six located in Sydney and three in regional NSW locations.

In 2021, there were 10 trainees in the PoWH network, with two starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the smaller training networks administered by the College.

PoWH has a well-supported research sector and is invested in strengthening research outcomes through trainees and Fellows.

The first year of training

First years are very well supported while working in a team. There is a strong focus on teamwork, communication, skill acquisition, surgical training including the onsite EyeSi simulation program and exam preparation. Trainees are closely supervised in the first year and gain exposure to a range of subspecialties as well as general ophthalmology.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the PoWH Training Network should note:

  1. the network’s focus on developing and promoting a centre of research excellence, and
  2. the strong focus on teamwork.

Applicants who want to be considered for employment in the PoWH Training Network must also complete an employment applications through NSW Health.

The PoWH Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the following weightings to those outcomes:

ItemRANZCO weightingPoWH Network weighting
CV review32 pts32 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
4 pts
Rural
8 pts
2 pts
Scholar
8 pts
18 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
4 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
8 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
5 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts20 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews20 pts20 pts

The network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated PoWH as a preferred training network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview. The local interview accounts for 50% of the overall grade.

Your guide to the Regionally Enhanced Training Network (Australia only)

The Regionally Enhance Training Network (RETN) is a new Australia-wide training network. Approximately two-thirds of the trainee’s time will be spent in regional Australia and one-third in urban centres. Regional posts have a lot to offer trainees and are currently included in all existing training networks. They provide broad comprehensive ophthalmology clinical experience with increased opportunities to follow each patient through the course of their presenting problem. This contrasts with the patient journey in big city teaching hospitals where patients are typically funneled into subspecialty clinics following their initial presentation. In addition, regional terms typically offer trainees a wider range of surgical training.

Each complete training pathway will provide a broad exposure to all areas of ophthalmology needed to be a comprehensive ophthalmologist and will give trainees hands-on experience in the wide range of ophthalmic styles of practice in Australia, such as teaching hospitals in both large cities and provincial centres, private practice medicine, Aboriginal Medical Service clinics and remote community outreach clinics. RETN trainees will achieve the same degree of excellence in training that the trainees from the current vocational networks do.

Each pathway rotation is of one year or longer duration, so RETN trainees do not have to change locations frequently.

Selection

The RETN will consider the highest ranking candidates who have selected a RETN Training Pathway as one of their preferences from the centralised RANZCO Selection process.

The RETN weighting is:

  • RANZCO centralised selection grade: 65%
  • RETN Training Pathway interview: 20%
  • Additional points for rural exposure within the service area that each pathway covers: 15%

The RETN will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated RETN as a preferred training network. Of those who are contacted, an interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided before the interview.

The following four RETN pathways are open to expressions of interest at this time:

RETN PathwaysYear 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5
1. Top End PathwayDarwinDarwinMelbourneBroomeBroome
2. Southwest Victoria PathwayGeelongSheppartonMelbourneWarrnamboolWarrnambool
3. Northwest NSW PathwayHobartPort MacquarieSydneyTamworthTamworth
4. Western NSW PathwayHobartWagga WaggaSydneyOrange with outreach to DubboOrange with outreach to Dubbo

For more background information about the RETN, please click here.

Your guide to the Queensland Training Network

The Queensland Training Network comprises 17 training posts, with 12 located in Brisbane, three on the Gold Coast, one on the Sunshine Coast and one in Townsville.

In 2021, there were 16 trainees in the Queensland network, with two starting in 2022.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the Queensland Training Network should note that applicants who want to be considered for employment in the Queensland Training Network must also complete an employment application through Queensland Health.

The Queensland Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the same weightings. It also carefully considers clinical experience in non-training positions and the local interview in the registrar appointment process.

ItemRANZCO/QLD weighting
CV review32 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
Rural
8 pts
Scholar
8 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts

The network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated Queensland as a preferred Training Network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview.

Your guide to the South Australian Training Network

The South Australian Training Network has nine training posts, with eight located in Adelaide and one in Alice Springs, NT.

In 2021, there were 10 trainees in the South Australian network, with two starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the smaller training networks administered by the College.

Noting the workforce distribution challenges that exist in South Australia and the need for more ophthalmologists, the South Australian network is particularly keen to recruit trainees who are from the area, or who are invested in remaining in the area when they finish training and become a Fellow of the College (FRANZCO). Additionally, South Australia has a well-supported research sector and is strengthening research outcomes through trainees and Fellows.

The first year of training

The first year of training can be challenging due to the rigours of learning and the need to be on-call. Pre-vocational work experience in ophthalmology is desirable as trainees are required to provide a wide range of ophthalmology services early in training. There is a strong focus on teamwork and communication.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the South Australian Training Network should note:

  1. the network’s focus on long-term workforce sustainability,
  2. the network’s focus on developing and promoting a centre of research excellence, and
  3. pre-vocational work experience in ophthalmology is desirable.

The South Australian Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the following weightings to those outcomes:

ItemRANZCO weightingSA Network weighting
CV review32 pts35 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
5 pts
Rural
8 pts
2.5 pts
Scholar
8 pts
12.5 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
10 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
5 pts
Referee reports13 pts10 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
5 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
5 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts7.5 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts25 pts
SA InterviewN/A22.5 pts

The Network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process who have nominated South Australia as a preferred training network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview. The local interview comprises the remaining 22.5 pts of the overall grade.

Your guide to the Sydney Eye Hospital Training Network

The SEH Training Network comprises 48 training posts, with 37 located in Sydney, seven in NSW regional locations, once in ACT, two in Darwin, NT and one in Hobart, TAS.

In 2021, there were 50 trainees in the NSW network, with seven starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the largest training networks administered by the College.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the NSW Training Network should note that applicants who want to be considered for employment in the NSW Training Network must also complete an employment application through NSW Health.

The NSW Training Network follows the recommendations of NSW Health in terms of Indigenous employment targets and support of ophthalmologists who aim for careers in rural and regional areas. The network selection committee carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO selection process and applies the following same weightings:

ItemRANZCO/SEH weighting
CV review32 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
Rural
8 pts
Scholar
8 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts

*This score makes up 50% of the final candidate score after their interview.

The network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated NSW as a preferred Training Network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview.

The local interview comprises 50% of the overall score for candidates that is added to the 50% of the RANZCO weightings. Candidates are then ranked and offered a position in accordance with vacancies available for that year.

Your guide to the Victorian Training Network

The Victorian Training Network comprises 32 training posts, with 27 located in Melbourne locations, three in regional locations, one in ACT and one in Launceston, TAS.

In 2021, there were 34 trainees in the Victorian network, with nine starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the largest training networks administered by the College.

Victoria has a well-supported research sector and is invested in strengthening research outcomes through trainees and Fellows. Trainees are closely supervised in the first year, with all training done at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital.

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the VictorianTraining Network should note that the network’s focus on developing and promoting a centre of research excellence.

The Victorian Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the following same weightings:

ItemRANZCO/VIC weighting
CV review32 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
Rural
8 pts
Scholar
8 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts

The network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated Victoria as a preferred Training Network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview may be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview. If local interviews take place, they will account for 10% of the overall grade.

Your guide to the Western Australian Training Network

The Western Australian Training Network comprises 12 training posts, with 10 located in metro locations—one in Bunbury and one in Hobart, TAS.

In 2021, there were 17 trainees in the Western Australian network, with three starting in 2022. This makes the network one of the smaller training networks administered by the College.

Noting the workforce distribution challenges that exist in Western Australia and the need for more ophthalmologists, the Western Australian network is particularly keen to recruit trainees who are from the area, or who are invested in remaining in the area when they finish training and become a Fellow of the College (FRANZCO).

Selection

Those applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who want to be considered for employment in the Western Australian Training Network should note:

  1. the network’s focus on long term workforce sustainability, and
  2. pre-vocational work experience in ophthalmology is essential

The Western Australian Training Network carefully considers the outcomes of the centralised RANZCO Selection process and applies the following same weightings:

ItemRANZCO/WA weighting
CV review32 pts
Indigenous
8 pts
Rural
8 pts
Scholar
8 pts
Ophthalmic experience
4 pts
Other attributes
4 pts
Referee reports13 pts
Medical expert
11 pts
Professional attributes
2 pts
Situational Judgement Test20 pts
Multiple Mini Interviews35 pts

The Network will not necessarily contact all applicants who make it through the centralised RANZCO selection process and who have nominated Western Australia as a preferred training network. Of those who are contacted, a local interview will be arranged. Further details on what to expect during the interview will be provided prior to the interview. The local interview accounts for 50% of the overall grade.

Last updated: January 6, 2022

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