The Viking Surgeons
We are an association of Remote and Rural Surgeons working in Rural General Hospitals in Highlands and Islands of Scotland, rural areas of N Ireland, Isle of Man and Iceland. Membership has also included surgeons from the Faroes and coastal areas of England in the past and is open to Remote and Rural surgeons in any geographical location that the Vikings reached!
In the West, the true General Surgeon is becoming an endangered species. By contrast, Remote and Rural surgeons, depending on their location and facilities, deal with:
- Emergency general surgery
- Upper GI surgery (major resections are centralised in the UK but laparoscopic cholecystectomy would be undertaken locally)
- Lower GI surgery (including colonic and rectal resection, with regional MDT support)
- Breast surgery
- General paediatric surgery
- Upper and lower GI endoscopy
- Urology (“office” urology, but may also include rigid cystoscopy, placement of ureteric stents, and TURP)
- Orthopaedic trauma (may include MUA of common fractures, ORIF of hip and ankle fractures, K-wiring, while major long bone fractures would be referred for ORIF elsewhere)
- Minor cold orthopaedic surgery
- Emergency gynaecology
- Emergency obstetrics
- Accident and Emergency – all surgical cases including ENT and eye emergencies
In 2016 the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh published a report entitled Standards Informing Delivery of Care in Rural Surgery which outlines the current situation in Scotland, addresses issues of specialisation, and makes training recommendations for future remote and rural surgeons in UK and beyond.