Deadline for Abstract Submission:
20 October 2021 31 October 2021
Deadline for Early-Bird Registration:
20 October 2021 27 October 2021


Prof. Fun-Gee CHEN
Associate Professor of Anaesthesia
National University of Singapore

Professional Qualifications

  • MBBS National University of Singapore 1981
  • Masters in Medicine in Anaesthesia, National University of Singapore 1987
  • Fellow of the Faculty of Anaesthetists, Royal Australian College of Surgeons 1991
  • Fellow of the Australian New Zealand College of Anaesthesia 1992
  • Fellow of the Academy of Medicine 1992
  • Masters in Health Professions Education, University of Maastricht 2016

Clinical and Academic Appointments

  • Senior Consultant in Anaesthesia, National University Hospital 1999 to Date
  • Chair, Division of Critical Care, National University Hospital, 2009 to Date
  • Ministry of Health Appointments
  • Member of Singapore Medical Council 2011 to Date

EXAMS EXAMS EXAMS. Moving Away from Formal Assessments in Anaesthesia Training

In the US, the Board Certification examinations in Anesthesiology started in 1938, and in the United Kingdom, the Diploma of Anaesthesia, started in 1948. Only successful candidates at these examinations could be admitted to the specialist boards. This approach was adopted very quickly in the commonwealth countries with Hong Kong having the HKCA examinations and in Singapore the MMed (Anaesthesia) examinations.

Interestingly, in continental Europe, the approach to certification pays less emphasis on high stakes examination and more on frequent low stakes assessments. A Dutch anaesthetist, would have undergone similar years of training in an accredited programme, undergo numerous workbased assessments and only need to pass the 2-part European Diploma Intensive Care examination at the end of training to be certified. Yet these countries enjoy a very high standard of anaesthesia and intensive care, as seen in the anaesthesia and intensive care outcomes and life expectancies.

Programmatic assessments was first described by Van Der Vleuten CPM in 2005 as an approach to medical assessments. The assessments involve collection routine information about the learner’s competence. The learner’s progress is continually collected, analysed and, where needed, complemented with purposively collected additional assessment information. This information, rather than a singular final examination is used to determine if the learner has met all the requirements at the end of the training.

The presentation will answer concerns on whether programmatic assessments are psychometrically valid and robust. The experience in Singapore as the approach to promote residents in 2020 in the middle of COVID pandemic in Singapore will be presented. The experience with the National Pharmacy Residency program using the programmatic approach instead of a high stakes final examination will also be discussed.

C. P. M. van der Vleuten et al., (2012) A model for programmatic assessment fit for purpose, Medical Teacher, 34:3, 205-214