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Everything you need to know about EDAIC - Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care

  • November 04, 2022

An overview of EDAIC

If you’re an overseas Anaesthetist or Intensive Care doctor hoping to work in the UK then you may have wondered about the European Diploma in Anaesthetics and Intensive Care (EDAIC) and the best ways to get registered with the GMC. The good news is that if you’ve already read our blog series covering the acceptable qualifications that can be used for GMC registration, you’ll know that the European Diploma of Anaesthetics and Intensive Care (EDAIC) can be used to obtain your GMC license to practice and that the post-graduate qualification route will usually put you in the best position to secure a job! If you’re working in anaesthesiology/intensive care and already hold EDAIC, then you’ll definitely want to read our article regarding GMC registration for IMG’s; but if you haven’t yet completed EDAIC or any other PMQ in anaesthesiology and are looking for options, then read on for a full overview of EDAIC…

1. So what is EDAIC?

The European Diploma in Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care (EDAIC) is a two-part exam covering the relevant basic sciences and clinical subjects for a Specialist Anaesthetist, run by the European Society of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care (ESAIC). EDAIC is a great qualification to hold regardless of your intention to work in the UK as it is designed to test Anaesthetists at the end of their specialty training in all relevant basic sciences and clinical topics required by a Specialist Anaesthetist – this in turn helps to ensure that Anaesthetists completing EDAIC are consistently practicing to a high clinical level (a really great thing to be able to show when it comes to applying for NHS jobs). In our experience EDAIC is generally the most common/popular exam completed by international Anaesthetists for the sake of gaining GMC registration owing to its accessibility. That said, there are some countries like Sri-Lanka, where the medical training program is formally tied-in to the UK Royal College’s FRCA qualification making the EDAIC route less attractive to Anaesthetists: the Sri-Lankan Anaesthesiology MD is deemed equivalent to FRCA Primary and so holders can skip to the final FRCA exam. For these Anaesthetists, EDAIC may not be the best option.  

2. Am I eligible to sit EDAIC?

As mentioned already, EDAIC is a very accessible exam. EDAIC Part 1 (the written element) is open to any medical graduate, with EDAIC Part 2 (oral examinations) open to Anaesthetists who have passed EDAIC Part 1 and have either completed a formal Anaesthetic training program or are in the final year of a European Anaesthetic training program (a list of approved member state programs can be found here). It’s also worth pointing out that if you have completed the FRCA Primary examination you are exempt from the EDAIC Part 1 exam. According to the ESAIC website, it’s recommended that to give Anaesthetists the best chance of passing the EDAIC exams, anyone completing EDAIC Part 1 should have completed at least 3 years of formal specialty training in Anaesthetics. For EDAIC Part 2, this recommendation increases to 5 years.

3. How much does EDAIC cost?

Below you’ll find a table with a list of fees for each element of the EDAIC exams; these can change from time to time, so whilst these prices are correct as of November 2022, you may want to check the EDAIC website’s fee section for annual changes to EDAIC prices too. Please note that only candidates working and applying from a location where EDAIC Part 1 is mandatory/officially recognised can apply for the reduced EDAIC Part 1 fee (Argentina, Austria, Egypt, Finland, Flanders, Hungary, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Turkey). The “re-sit fee” for EDAIC papers is not available to those who cancelled or booked an EDAIC exam but did not attend the attempt.

Item

Price

On-Line Assessment (OLA) & Home On-Line Assessment (HOLA)

€50

In-Training Assessment (ITA)

€125

Part I fee(1)

€340 (incl. 1-year ESAIC membership)

Part I Reduced Fee(2)

€170 (incl. 1-year ESAIC membership)

Part II full Fee

€550 first attempt

Part II resit Fee(3)

€340 following attempts

Diploma Reprint

€50

Authentication of EDAIC by an external institution

€50

4. EDAIC Part 1

The EDAIC Part 1 exam is the written part of the qualification and is usually held in September/October each year – check here for the most up to date EDAIC exams that have been scheduled. Unlike the UK Royal College examinations, the EDAIC exams are held in a number of different languages depending on the location, but all follow the same format and cover the same topics: two 60 question multiple choice papers (Paper A and Paper B) that have a 2-hour time limit. Please note that the time limit is reduced to 90 minutes if these component parts of the EDAIC exam are being done on a computer. Each question has 5 suggested answers that can be either true or false, like the below example provided on page 10 of the ESAIC diploma guide:

  1. Concerning renal blood flow.

A. efferent glomerular arteriolar pressure affects systemic arterial pressure

B. renal vasoconstriction is stimulated by a decreased baroreceptor discharge

C. arterial hypoxaemia produces an increase in renal blood flow

D. renal vasodilation is a dopaminergic response

E. glomerular perfusion pressure is controlled by local autoregulatory mechanisms

Whilst EDAIC Part 1 Paper A’s questions focus on relevant basic science (e.g. anatomy, pharmacology, physiology and biochemistry, physics and principles of measurement and statistics), EDAIC Part 1 Paper B is made up of questions covering the following core clinical topics:

  • Internal and Emergency Medicine
  • General Anaesthesia
  • Regional Anaesthesia
  • Special Anaesthesia (including Pain)
  • Intensive Care Medicine

A full list of the areas covered within each of the above broad topics can be found on page 8 of the ESAIC diploma guide. Quite simply, in both EDAIC Part 1 Paper A and EDAIC Part 1 Paper B you achieve a mark for each answer you give correctly, with the pass mark each year changing based on the questions chosen for each paper and applicant performance during each given year.

Pass or fail, all candidates for EDAIC Part 1 will receive a “Candidate Report” following the EDAIC exams that show performance in each area of the papers. This allows you to see the sections you performed well (and not so well!) in should a re-sit for this part of the EDAIC exam be required.

5. EDAIC Part 2

Once you’ve passed the Part 1 exam and meet the other eligibility criteria outlined earlier, you’re ready to sign up for EDAIC part 2! The oral element of the EDAIC qualification consists of four 25-minute examinations which are all conducted on the same day, mirroring the topics covered in EDAIC Part 1 (basic science and specialty specific clinical topics). We’ve already mentioned the accessibility of EDAIC as an exam suite, so it’s no surprise that there are lots of opportunities to complete EDAIC Part 2 with the exam carried out in various locations between February and November each year.

A pair of examiners will run each of the four EDAIC Part 2 exam stations, with different examiners meeting you at each one – so over the course of the day, you’ll be assessed by 8 examiners in total. The EDAIC exam committee will usually try to ensure that one of the examiners on each station based in country where you’re taking the exam, with the other providing perspective from a different location.

About 10 minutes before you attend each EDAIC Part 2 examination station, you’ll be provided with a document outlining the details of the imaginary patient presenting in your department – this is the case you’ll be discussing with the examiners: concentrating on any perceived problems, further considerations when approaching the situation and possible courses of action. For the clinical topics, you’ll also be given supplementary information like X-rays, Computed Tomography scans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging and ultrasound images.    

Unlike EDAIC Part 1, the examiners for EDAIC Part 2 can give 3 possible marks for each of the 20 topics covered over the course of the day: “0” represents a fail, a “1” indicates borderline knowledge and a “2” is a pass. The examiners will assess you based on the station they are running and won’t know how well you’ve performed in any other station, meeting at the end of the day to add up the totals and give you a score out of 20 for each section and an overall score out of 80. In order to pass EDAIC Part 2 you’ll need to ensure you score a minimum of 25 out of 40 from both the morning and afternoon sessions (2 stations during each period). Additionally, you’ll need to score 60 out of the total 80 marks available – so make sure you revise broadly and cover all topics of the exam that are contained in the EDAIC syllabus!

6. How to prepare for EDAIC

If you’ve read this and decided to undertake the EDAIC exams or perhaps you’re already preparing for one of the EDAIC parts and looking for resources, please find links below to the materials most recommended by doctors we have worked with who have passed the EDAIC exams!

Books:

Past Papers:

Podcasts:

  • Listed from the Anaesthesia UK website here

Has this been helpful?

Thanks so much for reading! If you’d like more information or have something else to ask us regarding EDAIC or any other aspect of living/working in the UK, then please don't hesitate to get in touch - our Anaesthetics and ICU experts Alice and Tyler will be more than happy to help you. You can reach them via email ([email protected] / [email protected]) or on any of our main social channels (see below). Would you like to read our blogs about what to expect from an NHS interview or how to structure a medical CV?

Facebook / LinkedIn / Instagram / Twitter / YouTube

References

https://www.esaic.org/education/edaic/

 
 

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