About the anaesthesia programme

Anaesthesia training in the North East combines high quality clinical training at outstanding hospitals, that are within the highest ranking in the UK, with the beauty of the North East and Cumbria. As an anaesthetic trainee you will care for patients of all ages, some of whom will be the sickest in the hospital, and then be able to unwind on the sprawling beaches of Northumberland or even the majestic hills of the Lake District.

Anaesthesia is a very trainee centred programme with a large number of trainees choosing to work at less-than-full-time and this is supported by the school. Teaching and training opportunities are plentiful from 1:1 teaching in the theatre setting to formal courses provided by Anaesthetic Learning in the North East (A-LiNE). These are mapped to the anaesthetic curriculum to support training progression at all stages.

Trainee feedback is consistently excellent and, despite being a large school, trainees are encouraged to thrive by our friendly and supportive consultant team. We have an active Trainee Committee that provides a voice for trainees within the school’s executive committee and organises regular social events.

How many posts are available:

Stage 1 – Average of 34 places per academic year* (ACCS 22, Core 12)

Stage 2 – Average of 24 places per academic year*

N.B. Post are split between August and February with an August intake weighting

*Posts advertised will depend on the number of available slots on the rotation and may vary from year to year. More information can be found at

Our hospitals and what they offer:

The region offers full coverage of the anaesthetic curriculum with access to neurosurgery & neuro-critical care, cardiothoracic anaesthesia, intensive care medicine, paediatric, ENT, obstetrics, burns, major trauma, vascular and all general duties units of training.

Rotational placements for each stage of training can be in different hospitals across the region, so commuting can be expected; This is to maximise the training experience for all trainees, with placements managed in a fair and balanced manner.

Cumberland Infirmary

Freeman Hospital

Royal Victoria Infirmary

Sunderland Royal Hospital

Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital

Darlington Memorial Hospital

James Cook Hospital

Queen Elizabeth Hospital

Wansbeck General Hospital

University Hospital North Tees

University Hospital North Durham

What our trainees say

Meet anaesthetics registrar Nick Francis​ who says there’s something in the North East and North Cumbria for everyone.

Trainee Conference 2021

Our region hosted the Association of Anaesthetists Trainee Conference at St James’ Park, Newcastle on the 8 & 9 July 2021. The conference was attended by trainees, medical students and 1st year consultants from across the country, allowing us to showcase why our region is the best place for medical training.

Find out more

Get in touch

Head of School – Gary Lear ([email protected])

Stage 1 (Core) – Amir Rafi ([email protected])

Stage 1 (ACCS) – Suzy O’Neill ([email protected])

Stage 2 – Stephen Robb ([email protected])

Stage 3 – Chloe Fairbairns ([email protected])

And finally! Find out about A-line

Anaesthesia Learning in the North East (A-liNE) was set up to improve the way we deliver educational courses across the region. A-liNE courses are for all trainees in the region, as well as accommodating national trainees, in order to showcase what the region has to offer for both living and training.