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logo eafps blockEuropean Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery
Guidelines for Training and Certification in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery



The European Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery Societies (EAFPS) aims to train, maintain and uphold the highest quality in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery through its recognized Fellowships and Certification process. This ensures training compliance, with all member Societies involved, maintains uniformity in the highest standards of training, and reassures the patients and the public.

The fellowship in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is available to surgeons who have completed training in Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery or Plastic Surgery and have passed the respective specialty exams of the member societies country(‘s).

Fellows who successfully complete the EAFPS fellowship are expected to pursue certification by the European Board of Certification in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (EBCFPRS).


General Rules

  1. The EAFPS is continually developing its fellowship programs and invites prospective fellows to apply annually.
  1. The purpose of the fellowship is to provide the fellow with the opportunity to study the art, science and skills of facial plastic surgery from excellent teachers and mentors within a protected time frame and environment.
  1. The EAFPS recommends completion of the fellowship within one year. Taking the EBCFPRS examination under the auspices of the IFFPSS is required for completion of the fellowship.
  1. Options are available for spending 3 months of the 12-month fellowship in an approved fellowship program overseas, coordinated by the IFFPSS observership program.
  1. Fellows are allowed 5 years to submit 100 personal qualified operative case records (see Appendix A) after sitting for the examination administered by the International Board for Certification in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (IBCFPRS) in collaboration with the ABFPRS. Passing the examination is a requirement for completion of an IFFPSS fellowship and the fellow will be expected to complete certification requirements set forth by the IBCFPRS.
  1. Upon completion of the 12-month fellowship, the fellow is required to submit the operative log supplied by the IFFPSS to document the fellowship experience.


General Requirements

  1. The applicant must have completed residency training in Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery or Plastic Surgery and have passed the respective Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery or Plastic Surgery exams of the member societies country(‘s).
  2. Application is made through the sponsoring society and is reviewed by the Fellowship Committee of the EAFPS.
  3. The closing date for application is December 31 of each year.
  4. The applicant must be a member of the sponsoring society and the IFFPSS.
  5. A curriculum vitae is required.


Educational Program


  1. The program director must develop a structured written curriculum with defined goals and objectives.
  1. Program design and structure must be approved by the Fellowship Review Committee as part of the review process.
  1. Clinical, basic science and research conferences as well as seminars and critical literature review activities pertaining to the entire subspecialty must be conducted regularly and as scheduled.
  1. It is expected that fellows participate in planning and conducting selected conferences, where applicable. Both faculty and fellows should attend and participate in multi-disciplinary conferences.
  1. Fellows must have the appropriate supervised opportunities to develop skills in providing consultation and communication with colleagues and referring physicians.
  1. The program should provide fellows with the opportunity to teach medical students, resident physicians and other professional personnel.
  1. Written lines of responsibility must be clearly delineated for both fellows and core-program residents as relates to areas of training and clinical responsibilities. This document must be provided to the Fellowship Review Committee at the time of review.


Program Goals and Objectives

  1. Although educational programs in facial plastic surgery may differ in format and objectives, each program must demonstrate that fellows are provided with an adequate and structured clinical opportunity to develop the advanced knowledge, skills, clinical judgment and attitudes essential to the practice of all aspects of facial plastic surgery.
  1. The facial plastic surgery fellow must be provided with progressive senior surgical responsibility in the four essential phases of total patient care: pre-operative evaluation,development of surgical and/or non-surgical treatment plans, operative experience and post-operative management.
  1. The facial plastic surgery fellow must be provided with sufficient knowledge in the basic sciences including anatomy, physiology and pathology as related to the diagnosis and management of diseases, aging, and aesthetics of the face, head and neck.


Academic and Clinical Components

  1. The fellowship program must provide a sufficient number and variety of cases to assure primary clinical responsibility as well as adequate inpatient/outpatient experience for each fellow without diluting the experience of the core resident training program with which it is associated.
  1. The fellowship program must provide adequate and structured clinical opportunities for fellows to develop advanced skills in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.
  1. Fellows must be allowed senior responsibility as the operating surgeon while performing critical portions of the surgery to gain adequate operative management training.
  1. The educational program should include the areas outlined below:

i) Recognition and management of congenital anomalies, deformities, lesions, trauma, and aging process of the face, head and neck;

ii) Surgical management of congenital, inflammatory, neoplastic, traumatic and aging states of the face, head and neck including, but not limited to: a) nasal surgery; b) maxillofacial, plastic and reconstructive surgery of the head and neck;

iii) Oncologic surgery of the head and neck; d)  head and neck reconstructive surgery as it relates to the restoration of function, congenital anomalies, head and neck trauma; e) pre- and postoperative care; f) minimally invasive techniques; and g) management of complications;

iv) Diagnostic methods including related laboratory procedures;

v) Awareness of current literature pertaining to all areas of the curriculum;

vi) Awareness of the habilitation/rehabilitation techniques and procedures pertaining to facial plastic and reconstructive surgery;

vii) Additional basic and clinical science topics pertinent to the physiology of soft tissue and bone innervation, perfusion, repair and healing.

Fellowship Program Requirements

All fellowship programs must be approved by the EAFPS Fellowship Review Committee.


Program Director and Allied Staff:

A single responsible individual must direct the fellowship program. The Program Director must maintain active hospital privileges to perform facial plastic surgery procedures or have privileges in an outpatient setting to perform facial plastic surgery procedures. He or she must be an experienced facial plastic surgeon with sufficient administrative experience, and research interest to ensure effective training of the Fellow and steer the fellowship program. The Program Director must have taken the EBCFPRS exam under the auspices of the IFFPRSS.


The Program Director must ensure that the Fellowship Program

1- Meets the goals and objectives as set out by EAFPS and should be able to systematically assess that these goals have been met.

2 – Provide adequate educational resources and materials, such as library facility, books, journals and videos.

3- Performs regular evaluation of the knowledge, skills and professional growth of the fellow, using appropriate written criteria and procedures, and is equipped with tools to address any deficiencies as required by the IFFPSS. This will be performed at the six and twelve-month marks of the fellowship.

4- Formal evaluation and documentation of Fellows’ performance in each of the following categories: knowledge, operative skills, surgical exposure, and complications .

5- A final written evaluation of each fellow upon completion of the program supplied by the IFFPRSS Fellowship Committee is required. The evaluation includes a review of the Fellow’s performance during the training program, and should verify that the Fellow has demonstrated sufficient competency to that point of training. The purpose of evaluation is to document satisfactory completion of the fellowship. This evaluation must be included as part of the Fellow’s permanent record and must be maintained by the institution and recorded with the IFFPRSS .


Institutional commitment:

Qualifying institutions include University hospitals, private practices, ambulatory care settings and outpatient clinics, or a combination of the above. The sponsoring institution must provide sufficient faculty, financial resources and academic support to enable the program to comply with the Fellowship requirements.

Fellowships that are based in institutions or centers that also sponsor residency training programs must demonstrate that the fellowship and residency programmes are not in conflict. The fellowship experience must not compete with the residency training program for surgical cases. Separate statistics must be maintained for each program.

Fellows must be compliant with the occupational health, health and safety, as well mandatory training programmes required by each institution.


Facilities and resources:

Institutional facilities and resources must be adequate to provide the educational experiences and opportunities required to fulfil the needs of the educational program as specified above. These include, but are not limited to, facilities and personnel resources for fellows to carry out their patient care and personal educational responsibilities, administrative offices, and an adequate library and internet capability providing access to standard reference text and current journals, and sufficient space for instruction.


Didactic requirement:

There shall be frequent didactic sessions including, but not limited to, morbidity and mortality conference, journal club, clinical presentations, research and basic science presentations.


On-going outcome assessment:

Each Fellowship Program must comply with the goal and objectives of the EAFPS. To aid in the assessment of IFFPSS fellowship programs, each program must regularly evaluate the degree to which its goals are being met through a formal assessment and appraisal of outcomes. To accomplish this, each fellowship program will submit an annual report to the EAFPS and will undergo a more extensive formal review every three to five years, as determined by the Fellowship Review Committee of the EAFPS.

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