A busy few weeks in the life of a Consultant ENT Surgeon!

With further easing of lockdown restrictions, work has been steadily increasing. I have been much busier in clinic at the One Ashford Hospital and had my first clinic in the Spencer Wing at Kent & Canterbury Hospital on a Wednesday evening and hope these will become regular on weeks one, three and five of every month although they are on hold again; we are temporarily awaiting approval to use the Trust equipment to perform nasal endoscopies. My first operating list at the One Ashford Hospital went well and it was good to start working with the theatre team there again as the last time was back in December at the start of the second COVID-19 surge.

There has been increasing extra curricula activity at work and I have undertaken three talks this month on top of hosting our usual monthly audit meeting. I presented to the Accident & Emergency Department trainees and ACCS (junior doctors rotating through medicine, anaesthetics, intensive care and accident and emergency) on ear, nose and throat emergencies. We discussed nose bleeds (epistaxis), complications of Tonsillectomy, airway emergencies, head and neck cancer, thyroid and parathyroid emergencies as well as some of the rarer emergencies we occasionally see in the Ear, Nose and Throat Department. The talks were well received. I also participated on the tracheostomy course and this received excellent feedback once again and further courses are planned for later on this year.

The audit meeting this month covered our usual governance presentation and there is still a huge backlog following COVID-19. It is not unreasonable to expect a wait of well over 2 years for a routine operation and I am looking to bring some of the long waiting patients into my private clinic to help with the waiting list, depending on the type of condition and severity.

I also presented to the department on PATHOS which is a phase 3 international clinical trial. I will be principal investigator for local recruitment. We are hoping to be up and running in around four weeks and will be recruiting patients into the trial and our Head and Neck Robotics Programme, which should be running at the end of June. My colleague Mr Al-Lami and I are off to Belgium soon to complete our robotics training in preparation for PATHOS and the East Kent Head and Neck Robotics Programme.