Dr. Josephine Boland

/ Dr. Josephine Boland

Dr. Josephine Boland
Ed.D, M.Sc., PgDip, B.A (Hons)
(Orla: only if qualifications are generally included with the bios)

Dr. Josephine Boland is a medical education consultant and researcher working in the field of postgraduate education and training. She specialises in competency framework development, curriculum and assessment design, evaluation, quality assurance and faculty development. As medical educationalist and Director of Medical Education with the College of Anaesthetists of Ireland since 2015, she has led a major college initiative developing a competency based programme, using Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs). This has involved designing and implementing a new system of work based assessment based on promoting a culture of feedback, using innovative smart technology.
Dr Boland is a member of the executive of the Intercollegiate Collaboration on CBME in Anaesthesia (ICCA). The ICCA has made the case for EPAs as a means of establishing comparability of training programmes in anaesthesia (BJA, 2017). She was a member of the team which developed the Framework of Outcomes for Intern Training in Ireland, commissioned by the Medical Council. She has experience of consulting with the Irish College of General Practitioners, Faculty of Radiologists, RCSI and the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland.

Dr Boland is a published scholar, presenting regularly at international medical education conferences. Prior to moving to the field of postgraduate medical training, Dr Boland was Senior Lecturer in Education in the School of Medicine, NUI Galway. Dr. Boland also maintains her commitment to community engagement, serving as a mentor for Campus Engage, supporting community engagement within Irish higher education. She also provides support to university-community partnership building in Europe, Central America and in the Far East.

The College of Anaesthetists of Ireland has developed a competency framework for the Specialist Anaesthesia Training (SAT) programme, using Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) as the organising framework. A list of core and advanced/elective EPAs has been scoped out and four EPAs have been developed and trialled during 2017-18. Four work based assessment tool – Feedback Reports – have been developed, with a mobile App. Twenty five EPA tutors were trained and provide departmental briefing meetings and support to colleagues. A suite of digital resources is hosted on the Competency Framework Hub. A communication strategy promotes active engagement by tutors, trainees and consultants. An external evaluation explored their experience and provides us with evidence of the impact of the process.
The outcome of this trialling phase has informed a proposal for implementation of a competency based programme, with work based assessment, over a three year period, 2018-21. This involves developing all core EPAs, providing clinical leadership on a regional basis, establishing the architecture for review processes within hospitals and at College level, addressing data management aspects with the necessary technological infrastructure, and providing further continuous professional development.
This approach to building and verifying competence can offer the public confidence that the College has made a significant effort to improve the quality of medical training. It commits the College to developing a system to certify that doctors are ready for independent practice, in the interest of safeguarding patients welfare in an ever changing technological and therapeutic environment that seeks to maintain health and quality of life for all.