Contributing to the next generation of Liverpool Doctors

Published on

John handing a trophy to a student

Mr John Taylor is a Consultant Trauma & Emergency General Surgeon and Clinical Director at Aintree University Hospital. He is involved in shaping the MBChB acute surgery curriculum at the School, as well as a regular participant in careers talks, society events and surgical skills activities for student doctors.

Which areas of the MBChB programme are you involved in?

I’m currently Curriculum Lead for Acute Surgery, which primarily deals with the final year of the course, which focuses more on acute specialties to prepare students for working in this environment.

I also organise the student attachments within my department at Aintree and support the student surgical societies by providing regular teaching of surgical skills. I have helped to ‘resurrect’ and organise the LMSS Surgical Case Presentation Cup, a long-held tradition which was fading after the old trophy was lost (anyone know where it is??).

What’s one thing that strikes you as different about the course from your time at the School?

There seems to be slightly less focus on basic sciences than we had, which has both good and bad points. Being able to draw all the steps of the Kreb’s cycle hasn’t really proven useful in my training but there are aspects such as anatomy dissection which I personally think is a loss, although I understand the reasoning behind it.

One area that has changed for the better are the communication skills of the students and the preparedness of the students for their work as a doctor.  

The ‘old’ course didn’t have the focus on the work expected once we qualified and we were left to try to figure a lot out as we went.

The preparation for practice built into the final year is a great innovation to remove some of the apprehension students have when making that leap form undergrad to post grad.

Given the increasing competition and requirements for entering training programs, there is also a lot of focus on informing students of their options and what they need to achieve in order to optimise their chances.

What do you love most about your interactions with our undergraduates?

I find the teaching and mentorship an enjoyable way to keep things fresh and up to date. Students have such focus on what their objectives need to be and those of us involved in teaching have to constantly refresh what we do, which keeps me on my toes!

Also, my wife says I like showing off... and there could be some truth in that!

What would you say to a fellow graduate interested in stepping back onto campus to teach/guide today’s students?

Do it! It’s a great way to contribute to the next Liverpool generation and reconnect with a place that you are still attached to.

John and Liverpool Medics Hockey Team, NAMS champions 1992

After graduating from Liverpool School of Medicine in 1993, John Taylor completed core level and specialist training in General and Vascular Surgery on Merseyside as well as a research fellowship at the Price Institute, University of Louisville, Kentucky, which landed him a ChM degree from the University of Liverpool for his thesis on Trauma Immunology.

From 2007 to 2014 John was a Consultant Vascular Surgeon at the North Devon District Hospital before returning to Aintree to focus on acute surgical care and trauma. In his spare time, he trains in Shotokan Karate and holds a fifth Dan Black Belt and second Dan in Ryukyu Kobudo.

Stay up to date with all the latest opportunities to volunteer and interact with our student doctors over on the Get Involved section of our Liverpool Educators Online (LEO) web area. Learn more about teaching options at the School over on our Teach With Us webpage.