MMI Medicine Interview Tips

MMI Interview Tips
Written 31/01/2022 by the fantabulous @KA_P!

Have a read of:
- GMC’s Good Medical Practice
- NHS Constitution
- NHS Core Values
- NHS’ Long Term Plan
- [https://www.medschools.ac.uk/media/2542/statement-on-core-values-to-study-
medicine.pdf]


Useful Mnemonics
To be used as a guide on what to include in your answer, not a strict structure to abide to. [https://www.nwpgmd.nhs.uk/sites/default/files/Suggestions%20for%20Structuring%20Your%20Answers%20at%20Interview.docxpdf.pdf]


- CAMP (Clinical; Academic; Management; Personal)
You can use this for questions such as “What is the role of a doctor?”. In this question, you can use CAMP as a guideline to mention the various aspects of a doctor’s role, whether it be teaching/training juniors/learning/operating/consulting/maintaining a good work-life balance.


- SPIES (Seek Information; Patient Safety; Initiative; Escalate; Support)
You can use this for questions involving difficult situations or colleagues, usually scenarios. I think it’s crucial to first of all show awareness of your role and the level of authority that your role has in the scenario. I’m pretty sure that I and E can be sometimes combined, as the action you take could be to escalate since you may not be in a position to approach the individual.


In S, you don’t want to make any assumptions or be judgemental. You want to take a calm and composed approach. In order to do this, you need to gain as much information as possible about the situation.


In P, is patient safety being compromised or has it already been compromised potentially (if a drunk consultant has been prescribing medication to patient before you saw them). In the GMC’S Good Medical Practice, it says to take prompt action if patient safety has been compromised. It would also be crucial to look at the urgency of the situation, does an action need to be taken now or can it wait for whatever relevant reason according to the situation.

In I, what will you do in this situation? Are you in a position to take action? What issues may stop you from taking an initiative yourself? Would you approach the individual in question, or would you need to escalate (E) to a senior colleague or someone with a role with more authority than your role? If you yourself approached them, then how would you communicate with them? You may need to aim for them to gain insight into the situation and their actions as well as their potential consequences.


If the situation does need to be escalated, you would need to encourage the individual as much as possible to escalate or report themselves. However, if they don’t have insight into the fact that what they’ve done is wrong then would you go and report them straight away, without even letting them know or would you notify the individual that you need to do so? Which one will be more likely to maintain the trust they have in you?


In E, does the situation need to be escalated? If so, who to? Why? Keep in mind the above, as well as duty of candour, being open and honest and acting with integrity.


In S, does the individual have any underlying issues, that maybe caused them to make such actions? Is there any way you or a senior colleague can support them or can you refer them to seek counselling or advice from their GP? Can you offer support on an ongoing basis or ensure that they have a taxi to take them home safely if disoriented?


- SPIKES (Setting; Perspective; Invitation; Knowledge; Emotion; Summary/Support)
You can use this in scenarios where you have to break bad news.


In S, buzzword is privacy.


In P, gain their perspective of the situation in order to prevent assumptions from being made. It also gives you an idea of how to relay the information to them, adapting your communication style according to their understanding.


In I, use a warning shot. Build it up a bit then break the news in simple language, try not to delay it so much.


In K, provide the necessary and relevant information to them in small and comprehendible chunks.


In E, buzzwords are empathy (or being empathetic) and silence (allowing for silence allows the individual to digest the information and register the severity of the situation/news). They may react in various ways: no reaction, shock, anger, distress, sadness, confusion. Try not to make the situation worse, stay calm and composed. Use phrases like "I can see that you are (emotion)", "I'm very sorry, this must be difficult for you to hear" or just small words like "Hm, mhm" or "oh dear".


In S, it's usually summary but I added support as well in a way to combine the last S of SPIES, only because in summarising the information/news you've provided them, they may look for
solutions to the situation they're in. Remember that you won't always have all the answers. Try to involve the individual as much as possible. Questions like "do you have any thoughts on what we/I could do to help?" would be useful here. Or it would be useful to let them go away and think about what they've heard today and offer support to them on an ongoing basis. They will likely have many questions brewing by the next time you see them, so maybe arrange to meet again and discuss any further thoughts they have.


- STARR (Situation; Task; Action; Result; Reflect)
You can use this in questions asking for examples, e.g. : “Tell about a time when you demonstrated...”, “Give me an example of a time when”, “When have you shown..?”.

In the reflect portion, you can talk about what exactly you learnt, what qualities/skills you gained or improved, how it would be useful for future situations, maybe link back to medicine.


- ICE (Ideas; Concerns; Expectations) [https://geekymedics.com/ice/]
You can use this in scenarios where someone is asking you for advice in making a decision.


In I, what do they think it could be, why? Involve them as much as possible. Try to gain their understanding of the situation as well.


In C, why does this concern them? Is their concern rooted to other things, giving rise to any underlying issues?


In E, what do they expect you to do for them? What sort of advice are they hoping for? Maybe you could provide them support on an ongoing basis?


Why this medical school?
[https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showpost.php?p=96296454&postcount=3005]
- Course structure/ curriculum/ teaching style?
- Dissection/Prosection/None (technology)?
- Clinical skills/early patient contact?
- Societies/ pastoral support?
- City/campus/sports/activities?


Question Banks:
- [https://www.themedicportal.com/application-guide/medical-school-interview/medicine-
interview-questions/]
- [https://www.blackstonetutors.co.uk/300-medical-school-interview-questions.html]
- [https://themsag.com/blogs/medical-school-interviews/50-medical-school-interview-
questions]
- [https://www.rcseng.ac.uk/careers-in-surgery/careers-support/applying-to-medical-
school/interview-questions/]
- [https://www.medicmind.co.uk/medicine-ucas-guide/medical-school-interview-questions/]
- Basically just search “Medicine Interview Question Banks UK”
- Watch YouTube videos as well


General Tips:
- Practice as much as you can. Don’t leave it until the week before the interview. Practice means verbal practice, not writing out answers by hand.
- Time yourself.
- Record yourself, whether by voice or video. Review it and critique yourself, not only point to improve on but also parts you did well on.
- Practice with other people, whether it be your parents, siblings, friends, colleagues, or family friend, etc. They don’t necessarily have to have medical knowledge.
- Don’t see this as a chore, but a learning opportunity. Confidence doesn’t just appear out of nowhere, it comes with practice and believing in yourself and your abilities.
- Positive visualisation. Do not go to sleep or wake up thinking you’re going to fail because you are not. Again, believe in yourself and your abilities. Imagine yourself on the interview day, feeling confident, structuring your answers well, you have good body language and you feel as if you’re enjoying the process.
- Start early, unlike the UCAT, there no limit to interview preparation. There’s always more to learn.


Checklist for Interview Preparation (only really a guide but not exhaustive):
- Background and motivation: Why YOU? Why this medical school? Why Medicine? What are your best and worst qualities? etc.
- Examples of a time when you demonstrated the qualities of a doctor: effective teamwork; qualities of leadership, etc.
- Four pillars of Medical Ethics: Autonomy, Beneficence, Non-Maleficence, Justice. Don’t just rote-learn them, understand and learn to apply them.
- Mental capacity (medical term), not to be used interchangeably with competence, as that is a legal term. Assume capacity for ages 16 and over, until proven otherwise. If individual does not have capacity, they may have an advanced directive or POA put in place.
- Gillick competence: To be used for patients under the age of 16. However, cannot refuse life-saving treatment.
- Informed consent
- Confidentiality; importance; when can it be breached?
- Ethical scenarios: Breaking bad news, counselling, etc.
- Data Interpretation: interpreting a graph, calculations, etc.
- Roleplay scenarios: understand your role first of all!
- Practical tasks: prioritisation, guiding from point A to B, explaining a task, etc.
- NHS structure and principles: Secretary of state, UKHSA, CCGs, primary, secondary, tertiary care, etc. What principles was the NHS built on?
- ‘postcode lottery’
- NHS Hot topics, current issues: Euthanasia, abortion, obesity, vaccination hesitancy, short-staffing; long waiting lists, etc.


Final Message:
- Take each interview as a learning opportunity.
- Positive visualisation does wonders.
- Practice verbally as much as you can.
- Try not to be over-critical of yourself, you can only try your best, nothing more. Mulling over what went wrong in an interview achieves nothing other than demotivation. Learn from what you can, but don’t put yourself down. Believe in yourself and your abilities.
- Sharing interview details breaches the confidentiality agreement with the university and will not help you in any way.
- Good luck!