Interventional gastroenterology

#Scopemanship: How to spark joy in endoscopy

Endoscopists are being encouraged to lift their game and aim for a higher level of practice which has been endorsed by the Twittersphere as #scopemanship.

Analogous to the difference between mere athleticism and sportsmanship, the proponents of scopemanship hope to see a transcendence beyond core technical and non-technical skills.

An article in Gastroenterology, by John Hunter Hospital’s Dr Steven Bollipo and international colleagues, defines scopemanship as “a higher order attribute which encompasses the spirit of endoscopy.”

“With the changing landscape of endoscopy with highly advanced procedures and high pressure for productivity, it is now more timely than ever to bring back the focus on the basic principles, ethics and joy of endoscopy, they say.

In their article they outline some of the components of scopemanship and how to share it with future generations of endoscopists:

Communication and Compassion

Cultivate verbal and nonverbal communication skills, remain humble and mindful of the needs of others, advocate for the patient and the endoscopy team, and enhance communication between different parties to ensure safe and efficient endoscopy flow.

Teamwork and Empowerment

Involve, respect and empower all endoscopy team e.g. to voice their opinions and concerns without fear of intimidation; create an atmosphere conducive for learning.

Situational awareness

In the case of complex procedures, maintain an accurate perception of how the procedure is going and anticipate potential complications. In a rapidly evolving situation, early recognition of an (impending) complication, and thoughtful and efficient decision making.

Decision making

Adopt a patient-centered approach when assessing the value and the risks and benefits of a diagnostic or therapeutic procedure for a patient; shared decision making; prioritise patient safety and benefit.


Take ownership of endoscopy suite failures/complications, initiate needed changes by listening to others’ input, deliver constructive feedback to the team, keep the focus on practical solutions to improve existing workflows and overcome future endoscopic challenge; pursue initiatives to improve quality, productivity and sustainability credentials within an endoscopy unit; find ways to improve staff welfare and decrease physician burnout.


Include trainees when hands-on opportunities arise, invest time before the procedure in assessing the trainee’s level of skills, learning objectives and agreeing when the trainer should take over; optimising trainee’s cognitive load during the procedure and give high-quality feedback; empower trainee confidence.

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