The Department provides training for consultants and fellows in point of care echocardiography, colloquially known as Echo School.  Fellows who wish to do so and who are with us for a year should be able to partake in this training in one or other of the two six months of their fellowship time.  (Perioperative fellows especially any wishing to focus on echocardiography should be able to participate for the full year).  Training needs to be undertaken during non-clinical time which is allocated on a weekly basis.  It is not permitted that someone attend echo school during the six months of either a regional or a simulator fellowship (but instead need to attend during the other six months of their fellowship year).

The training is one half day each week and covers image aquisition (scanning), image interpretation, application of echocardiography to critical care and audit.  Sessions generally involve a one hour tutorial, personal image aquisition training and audit, and review of echocardiograms from within the hospital. 

Echo School is designed to complement other echo training.  It is essential those seeking to attend a HARTScan course run by the Unversity of Melbourne or similar basic course before starting or shortly after doing so.  (A short conference workshop is not considered sufficient).  It is highly desirable those attending are enrolled in or have a completed at least a university certificate course or similar prior to starting.  The Department recommends the Unversity of Melbourne PG Certificate in Clinical Ultrasound.  Details of both Unviversity of Melbourne courses can be seen at www.heartweb.com.au  If necessary, priority is given to those enrolled full time with an appropriate certiicate course or those who have completed it.

Those wishing to attend echo school at sometime during a fellowship year should discuss the matter with the fellowship co-ordinator at an early stage.

The Department has 3 GE Vivid machines (one devoted to TOE in the cardiac theatre, one in the preadmission clinic and one in recovery) and 4 Sonosite machines all with transthoracic probes.  Images are archived onto a Prosolv server.  There are 15 consultants (most of whom are not cardiac anaesthetists) with at least a university certificate in echocardiography.  The echo school is facilitated by Dr John Faris and Dr Michael Veltman (both of whom are honorary members of the Unversity of Melbourne Ultrasound Education Group..