COURSE OVERVIEW

Surgery is still considered the most effective and definitive skin cancer treatment. The Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery is ideal for acquiring and honing various surgical techniques, including how to perform large elliptical excisions and different types of flaps and grafts. This will allow you to manage more complex skin cancer cases in your practice.

This course is the first part of the three-part Professional Diploma of Skin Cancer Surgery. The education pathway is Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery (online course components + practical workshop) or Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery Principles (online course components only), Advanced Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery and Professional Diploma of Skin Cancer Surgery.

If you choose to attend the optional practical workshop and there is cause for postponement or you cannot travel due to Covid-19 restrictions, full workshop refund, transfer or alternative learning opportunities will be available for you. View full refunds and cancellation policy here.

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COURSE CONTENTS

The course provides advanced learning in skin cancer surgery and teaches various techniques allowing GPs to treat more complex cases in the primary care setting. Course participants can choose to complete the course entirely online or with an optional practical workshop.

  • Surgical anatomy and skin lines
  • Local anaesthetic blocks
  • Large elliptical excisions*
  • Advanced suturing techniques*
  • Rotation flaps*
  • Advancement flaps*
  • Full-thickness grafts*
  • Dog ear repairs*
  • Wound care and various dressings

All topics are covered online and during the web live tutorials. *These topics are also covered during the hands-on practical sessions in the optional skills workshop. Course graduates also receive ongoing post-course support through regular alumni webinars.

Choose your Delivery format

The course is delivered fully online with the option to attend an eight-hour practical workshop. The modules are set up in such a way that you are not required to be online at specific times but can view and replay video lectures at your convenience. The suggested timeline is weekly learning over 15 weeks, with 12 weeks of teaching followed by the submission of required activities.  There are no face-to-face requirements for exams which can be conveniently completed online.

FULLY ONLINE

  • Commence your course anytime online, access all course content instantly and study at your own pace.
  • Reinforce your learning, participate in case discussions, follow along procedure demonstrations, and ask any questions in webinars with presenters.
  • Complete your assessment online and receive your CPD points and certificate.
ONLINE + WORKSHOP

  • Complete your course fully online and receive all of the benefits of online study.
  • Receive your CPD points and certificate.
  • Cement your knowledge in the accompanying workshop with hands-on training, demonstrations and expert guidance in a small group setting on a date and location of your choice.

 

Entry Requirements and course requisites

The Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery is ideal for Medical Doctors and International Medical Graduates wishing to learn important surgical techniques in the management of skin cancer to provide effective treatments to patients in the primary care setting, without the need for referral to specialists. Participants can expect an interactive, hands-on program with immediate applicability and the confidence to surgically treat skin lesions in their practice.

The course is suitable for Medical Doctors and International Medical Graduates. HealthCert recommends that participants have some exposure to or previous training in skin cancer management before enrolling in this course.

Participants do not have to pass an IELTS test but, as the courses are delivered in English, proficiency in listening, reading and writing in English is assumed.

Course Outline

Module 1 – Theory, Anatomy and Principles of Skin Cancer Surgery

This module introduces the theory and anatomical considerations relating to basic skin cancer surgery. It outlines the clinical requirements including how to set up the procedure room, the instruments and other equipment and supplies. The module incorporates skin anatomy and skin tension lines when considering the position and direction of an ellipse. The principles of, and how to do an ellipse are covered including undermining, haemostasis, suturing, dressings and aftercare. The suturing section incorporates the various types of sutures and needles. Skin anatomy and significant nerves are discussing including symptoms of damaged nerves. The later part of the module covers the importance of taking photos, procedural notes and patient consent.

Module 2 – Suturing, Perfecting the ellipse and Local anaesthetic

This module builds on the foundation knowledge taught in module one. This includes essential skills in knot tying, administering local anaesthetic, the role of diathermy/electrosurgery, surgical margins, instruments and surgery preparation. It then goes through the planning and design of an ellipse that includes cleaning the pork belly, loading a scalpel blade, marking out, excising and undermining an ellipse. The various common sutures are demonstrated including interrupted, deep, vertical mattress, horizontal mattress, pulley, marini and running sutures. Descriptions are provided on what each suture option is used for to determine the best sutures for closing a particular wound.

Module 3 – Skin grafting and the principles of flaps

This module introduces the skin graft technique, explains the difference between full thickness and split skin grafts, how they work and the stages of graft survival. The rationale for choosing the most appropriate skin graft when performing skin cancer surgery is outlined. The modules takes a step by step approach from excising the tumour to harvesting and closing the donor tissue site. Suitable techniques for suturing the donor tissue into the defect are discussed. Surgery preparation including patient considerations and maximising the wound environment for skin healing. The module includes a practical demonstration on the practical implementation of planning skin grafts using pork belly. It includes how to plan skin grafts based on the size of the defects, the donor area and preserving tissue during the procedure. Depending on the type of lesion, information is provided on when to perform a skin graft as opposed to wedge excision on the ear.

Module 4 – Pivotal (rotation) flaps

This module focusses on pivotal flaps, the theory, principles and then practical demonstrations on pork belly. The fundamentals are discussed including what is a skin flap, options for closure and aesthetic considerations. Potential complications are outlined. In the practical planning section, the design of rotation flaps including graphical images, assists with the planning of rotation flaps. The primary movement is for the flap to rotate into the defect with a leading edge, whilst the secondary movement is the arc defect resulting as an effect of the primary intention. With rotation flaps, dog ears are likely and techniques to remove dog ears are included. Degrees of rotation limitations are mentioned. Both schematic and clinical images assist with understanding rotation flap principles. Information on suture approach and placement are outlined for the rotation flap defect. Clinical cases are featured throughout the module.


Module 5 – Rhombus (rhomboid) flaps

This module focusses on rhomboid flaps and opens with theory of this transposition flap, the principles and then practical demonstrations on pork belly. The fundamentals are discussed including what is a skin flap, options for closure and aesthetic considerations. The importance of appropriate undermining is detailed. Careful patient evaluation, design planning and skilful meticulous technique are critical in minimising complications. In the practical planning section, the schematics of rhomboid flaps including graphical images, assists with the planning of rhomboid flaps. The primary movement is the transposing of the flap tissue over and into the defect, whilst the secondary movement is the donor or adjacent tissue defect created as a result of the primary transposition. With rhomboid flaps, dog ears are likely and techniques to remove dog ears are included. Both schematic and clinical images assist with understanding rhomboid flap principles. Information on suture approach and placement are outlined for the rhomboid flap defect. Modified rhomboid flaps are introduced.

Module 6 – Advancement flaps

This module focusses on advancement flaps and variations of the advancement flap including single and helical advancement, A-T, H-plasty and lateral advancement. Selecting the type of flap depends on the location of the defect and optimising aesthetic outcomes. Clinical case images demonstrate the marking out and planning of advancement flaps considering skin tension lines and then closing the wound. Unit two discusses the mathematic rules applied to advancement flaps. It includes practical demonstrations of advancement flaps using pork belly including undermining and outlining the suturing approach. Several advancement flap variants are also demonstrated on pork belly.

Module 7 – Wound care and managing complications

The module commences with understanding the phases of wound healing and how this relates to skin cancer surgery procedures. The various types of wound dressings are outlined including what dressings are used for a particular type of wound. Information on the use of antibiotic medications, movement whilst wounds are healing and considerations of when to remove sutures are outlined. Resources that can be applied for clinical use are provided. Unit two outlines what to do to manage complications that may occur. These include bleeding, haematoma, dehiscence, infection, splitting sutures, hypertrophic and keloid scarring and hypergranulation. Unit three introduces Mohs surgery, explains its application for pathology and its relevance to skin cancer surgery. Unit four discusses Medicare Australia and remuneration for skin cancer surgery procedures. Unit 5 outlines the medico legal considerations in Australia and the role of medical insurance.

Module 8 – Case studies

This module is an interactive opportunity to receive expert feedback on planning skin cancer surgery. A recording is presented for each of the six case studies describing the patient and the lesion that requires skin cancer surgery. Participants are asked to draw their surgery plans for each case including margins, and consider specific issues that may relate to that surgery or suggest other treatment options. A template guide is provided for each case.

COURSE OUTLINE

Saturday

Time Session Topic
7:45am - 8:15am Registration  
8:15am - 9:45am Session 1

Theory, anatomy and principles of surgery

9:45am - 10:15am Morning Tea  
10:15am - 12:15pm Session 2 Suturing and perfecting the ellipse plus local anaesthetic
Theory and practical
12:15pm - 1:15pm Lunch  
1:15pm - 2:45pm Session 3 Skin grafting and principles of flaps
Theory and practical
2:45pm - 3:15pm Afternoon Tea  
3:15pm - 4:45pm Session 4 Pivotal flaps
Theory and practical

Sunday

Time Session  Topic
7:45am - 8:00am Arrival  
8:00am - 10:00am Session 5 Rhombus flaps, a tissue conserving flap
Theory and practical
10:00am - 10.30am Morning Tea   
10:30am - 12:30pm Session 6 Advancement flaps
Theory and practical
12:30pm - 1:30pm Lunch   
1:30pm - 2:45pm Session 7 Wound care and managing complications
2:45pm - 3:15pm Afternoon Tea  
3:15pm - 4:15pm Session 8 Introduction to MOHS surgery
Case studies / Conclusion

Course Inclusions

For your one-off investment, you will receive unlimited access to all course content, additional learning materials, ongoing post-course support and more.

  • Online pre-course activity to be completed in your own time.
  • Eight online video modules to be viewed, replayed and completed at your convenience.
  • All presentation slides and further learning materials available for permanent access and download.
  • Instruments and consumables for practical sessions in the optional practical workshop.
  • Post-course online assessment to be completed in your own time within six months of the course start date.
  • Ongoing post-course support in monthly webinars with the opportunity to discuss cases with course presenters.
  • Access to the HealthCert Community with additional free learning opportunities, special offers and other benefits.

CHOOSE DATE AND
DELIVERY FORMAT

available fully online* or with practical workshop

ONLINE + WORKSHOP IN BRISBANE

From $2,995

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ONLINE + WORKSHOP IN Melbourne

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ONLINE + WORKSHOP IN SYDNEY

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ONLINE + WORKSHOP IN ADELAIDE

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ONLINE + WORKSHOP IN PERTH

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AVAILABLE TO ENROL FULLY ONLINE

From $2,395

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*Participants who choose to complete the online course components only will receive the Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery Principles.

If you choose to attend the optional practical workshop and there is cause for postponement or you cannot travel due to Covid-19 restrictions, full workshop refund, transfer or alternative learning opportunities will be available for you. View full refunds and cancellation policy here.

SPECIAL RATES AND PAYMENT OPTIONS

REGISTRARS
SCHOLARSHIP

Save up to $300

For doctors in training who are on a pathway to General Practice Registration through a recognised training provider.

COURSE
BUNDLES

Save up to $180

Enrol in two or three courses within the same education pathway to optimise your savings.

DEFERRED
PAYMENTS

Monthly from $605

Enrol in one, two or three courses within a pathway now and pay later in small monthly instalments.

*The individual offers and special rates cannot be used in conjunction with any other specials. 

LEARN MORE ABOUT AVAILABLE PAYMENT OPTIONS

WHAT YOUR COLLEAGUES SAY

Corey Birch testimonial video-1

Meet Your Instructors

Your course instructors are widely regarded as leading specialists in skin cancer surgery and business management. The optional practical workshops will be led by esteemed practitioners and surgical assistants in the respective location.
instructor.png

Dr Francis Tan

MBBS, MMed (Skin Cancer)

Certificate in Advanced Dermoscopy & Digital Imaging, The University of Queensland

Skin Cancer Doctor at Coorparoo Skin Cancer Centre

Dr Francis Tan graduated from The University of New South Wales in 1986. He worked in a variety of general practice surgeries throughout Australia, including clinics in Sydney, Tweed Heads, the Gold Coast, Brisbane and Cairns. He now practises at the Coorparoo Skin Cancer Centre in Brisbane.

Francis obtained a Masters of Medicine from The University of Queensland in 2014 and holds an impressive portfolio of university-certified Professional Diplomas in Skin Cancer Medicine and related fields. He is particularly interested in using dermatoscopy to detect melanoma in situ and performing skin cancer surgery to the best of his ability for the benefit of his patients.
Dr Tony Dicker

Dr Tony Dicker

MBBS PhD

Senior lecturer (Skin Cancer) & Course Coordinator MMed (Skin Cancer), The University of Queensland

Dr Tony Dicker has practised full-time Skin Cancer Medicine in Melbourne since 2004, and previously practised in Brisbane. He obtained his PhD from The University of Queensland in molecular biology of skin cancer with Professor Ian Frazer's group at Princess Alexandra Hospital. He then spent three years as a dermatology registrar at the Royal Brisbane and Princess Alexandra Hospitals.

ASSESSMENT

In order to meet the requirements of professional and academic learning, the course assessment includes a professional requirement and two online examinations. There are no face-to-face requirements for exams which can be conveniently completed online within six months of the course start date.

  • Develop a one-page report/explanation of how you will use the learning from this course in your professional work.

Online assessment

  • 88 knowledge questions based on a scenario of a medical practitioner undertaking special interest training.
    • 11 per module
      Example: The medical practitioner believes that 10% of the population … Is he correct? Yes/No

  • 88 authentic scenario based questions based on cases of patient care at a clinic.
    • 11 per module
    • Example: A patient arrives at your clinic with this problem … What should you do? Multiple choice images based on patient cases.

The knowledge-based examination is worth 50 per cent and the application-based examination is worth 50 per cent. The overall pass mark is 80 per cent. It is therefore not possible to pass this course on knowledge alone. Knowledge must be successfully applied to patient cases in order to pass the course.

CERTIFICATION AND ACCREDITATION

Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery - 1Upon successful completion of the course requirements, course participants will receive the Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery certificate and below points. You may also receive CPD recognition for the optional practical workshop; you will need to apply to your college, and the awarding of any CPD points will be at their discretion.

To learn more about the delivery of certificates in Australia and overseas, please visit our FAQs.

Participants who choose to complete the online course components only will receive the Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery Principles.


RACGP
CPD Accredited Activity 40 Points
ACRRM:
- PDP units: 18 Educational activity, 8 Performance review
- MOPs points: 3
Rural Procedural Grants Program: Check with your college for eligibility
 
 This certificate course:
  • Provides CPD points from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP).
  • Provides PDP points from the Australian Council of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM).
  • Is recognised by the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners (RNZCGP).
  • Is recognised by the Hong Kong College of Family Physicians (HKCFP). The HKCFP recognises all courses
    endorsed by the RACGP. Points are calculated differently.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in Dubai. The number of CPD points must be stated on the certificate. Please contact PLD@dhcr.gov.ae for more information.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in the UK. CPD events overseas, applicable to a doctor’s scope of practice, may be submitted for revalidation. Please confirm with your Responsible Officer.
  • Is a self-submitted activity in Canada through the College of Family Physicians of Canada. Category 1 points are reported as certified and Category 2 points are reported as non-certified. Contact mainprocredits@cfpc.ca for more information.
  • Meets World Federation of Medical Education standards.
  • Is recognised by the Skin Cancer Institute (SCI) and may be used as part of an application for Membership or Fellowship.
  • Has been collaboratively designed with, and is annually reviewed by, Professor David Wilkinson, Deputy Vice Chancellor at Macquarie University.
  • Qualifies for a Skin Cancer Surgery Clinical Attachment in France at the University of Lyon.
  • Qualifies for a Skin Cancer Surgery Clinical Attachment in Austria at the University of Vienna.
  • Has been independently developed with subject specialists and does not receive education grants from any pharmaceutical company.

Education Pathways

Professional Diploma Pathway

This course is the first stage of the Professional Diploma pathway. The full pathway is Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery, Advanced Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery and Professional Diploma of Skin Cancer Surgery

It is recommended that this qualification be used as part of an application for Membership or Fellowship with the Skin Cancer Institute.

 

Postgraduate Pathway

Postgraduate Diploma in Minor Surgery studied through the Rila Institute of Health Sciences and awarded by the University of Plymouth (UK).

There are three modules in the Postgraduate Diploma. Medical professionals who successfully complete the HealthCert Professional Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery, Advanced Certificate of Skin Cancer Surgery and Professional Diploma of Skin Cancer Surgery will be eligible to apply for Accreditation of Prior Certified Learning (APCL) for module 3.

The Postgraduate Diploma is mainly delivered online. No practical workshops will be required due to the APCL from the HealthCert qualifications. Overall there will be a time saving of 40 per cent of the postgraduate program due to the APCL. Exams will be held in Perth, Western Australia. 

When the Postgraduate Diploma has been successfully completed, doctors can apply for credit from the Postgraduate Diploma to the Master of Science in the Specialism awarded by the University of Plymouth.

 

Certified Clinical Attachments Pathway

Clinical attachments are optional and available on a 1:1 or small group basis. These provide the opportunity to observe skin cancer surgery and ask questions of the expert performing the procedures. In addition to clinical attachments in Australia, university teaching hospitals at the University of Lyon and the University of Vienna are available for clinical attachments. HealthCert certificates and university statements are awarded for participating in clinical attachments.

The dominant areas of study covered by The Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 are science and medicine. Attached to the university are the "Hospices civils de Lyon" including the "Centre Hospitalier Lyon Sud", which is the largest teaching hospital in the Rhône-Alpes region and second largest in France. Out of the 2,630 faculty, 700 are also medical practitioners at local teaching hospitals.

The Medical University of Vienna is the largest medical organisation in Austria, as well as one of the top-level research institutions in Europe and provides Europe's largest hospital, the Vienna General Hospital, with all of its medical staff. The Vienna General Hospital has about 100,000 patients treated as inpatients and 605,000 treated as outpatients each year.

Quality assured by
Bond University
Postgraduate studies with
Rila Institute of health sciences
Clinical attachment with
Vienna
Clinical attachment with
Lyon
Clinical attachment with
National Skin Cancer Centres
Recognised by
Skin Cancer Institute
Accredited by
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Accredited by
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