Pathology Registrar Traineeship Scheme
Pathologists play a key role in the timely provision of fresh tissue during collection and are essential to banking high quality biospecimens. In recognition of this service and the shortage of pathologists in Victoria, the Biobank supports pathology registrar positions at Consortium and some associate member sites. Since the traineeship scheme commenced in 2007, 25 training positions have been funded and 17 different Pathology Registrars have participated.
Each registrar undertakes a research project aimed at increasing their understanding of molecular pathology and its importance in cancer research, diagnosis and treatment. To date, research undertaken by five registrars has been published in peer reviewed journals; two registrars have been particularly successful with more than ten publications over the last four years and several registrars have received grants and awards.
The program has been embraced by both the pathologists and the registrars. It has underpinned the in-kind support we receive from pathology laboratories, which ensures that quality specimens are banked and available for collaborative cancer research undertaken locally, nationally and internationally.
The Biobank has collaborated with the Royal Australasian College of Pathologists (RCPA) to play an additional role in training pathology registrars. With funds provided by the RCPA through their Training Network Development Support Initiatives Program, for the Biobank to improve trainee access to training materials, particularly for trainees located outside metropolitan Melbourne.
The Biobank arranged for the purchase and installation of a licence for the Aperio Education Software on a partitioned area of the Biobank central server located at the Victorian Partnership for Advanced Computing (VPAC). Biobank staff at Melbourne Health worked with Dr Andrew Ryan and Dr John Ciciulla to scan and upload pathology teaching materials and David Morrison from VPAC ensured secure access to the materials was available to all participating trainees.