There is currently a discrepancy between Internal Medicine residents' decisions in the Canadian subspecialty fellowship match (known as the R4 match) and societal need. Some studies have been published examining factors that influence career choices. However, these were either demographic factors or factors pre-determined by the authors' opinion as possibly being important to incorporate into a survey.
A qualitative study was undertaken to identify factors that determine the residents choice in the subspecialty (R4) fellowship match using focus group discussions involving third and fourth year internal medicine residents
Based on content analysis of the discussion data, we identified five themes:
1) Practice environment including acuity of practice, ability to do procedures, lifestyle, job prospects and income
2) Exposure in rotations and to role models
3) Interest in subspecialty's patient population and common diseases
4) Prestige and respect of subspecialty
5) Fellowship training environment including fellowship program resources and length of training
There are a variety of factors that contribute to Internal Medicine residents' fellowship choice in Canada, many of which have been identified in previous survey studies. However, we found additional factors such as the resources available in a fellowship program, the prestige and respect of a subspecialty/career, and the recent trend towards a two-year General Internal Medicine fellowship in our country.
Currently, there are more residents enrolled in cardiology training programs in Canada than in immunology, pharmacology, rheumatology, infectious diseases, geriatrics and endocrinology combined. There is no published data regarding the proportion of Canadian internal medicine residents applying to the various subspecialties, or the factors that residents consider important when deciding which subspecialty to pursue. To address the concern about physician imbalances in internal medicine subspecialties, we need to examine the factors that motivate residents when making career decisions.
In this two-phase study, Canadian internal medicine residents participating in the post graduate year 4 (PGY4) subspecialty match were invited to participate in a web-based survey and focus group discussions. The focus group discussions were based on issues identified from the survey results. Analysis of focus group transcripts grew on grounded theory.
110 PGY3 residents participating in the PGY4 subspecialty match from 10 participating Canadian universities participated in the web-based survey (54% response rate). 22 residents from 3 different training programs participated in 4 focus groups held across Canada. Our study found that residents are choosing careers that provide intellectual stimulation, are consistent with their personality, and that provide a challenge in diagnosis. From our focus group discussions it appears that lifestyle, role models, mentorship and the experience of the resident with the specialty appear to be equally important in career decisions. Males are more likely to choose procedure based specialties and are more concerned with the reputation of the specialty as well as the anticipated salary. In contrast, residents choosing non-procedure based specialties are more concerned with issues related to lifestyle, including work-related stress, work hours and time for leisure as well as the patient populations they are treating.
This study suggests that internal medicine trainees, and particularly males, are increasingly choosing procedure-based specialties while non-procedure based specialties, and in particular general internal medicine, are losing appeal. We need to implement strategies to ensure positive rotation experiences, exposure to role models, improved lifestyle and job satisfaction as well as payment schedules that are equitable between disciplines in order to attract residents to less popular career choices.
Few studies have examined residents' retained knowledge and confidence regarding essential evidence-based medicine (EBM) topics.
To compare postgraduate year-3 (PGY-3) residents' confidence with EBM topics taught during internship with that of PGY-1 residents before and after exposure to an EBM curriculum.
All residents participated in an EBM curriculum during their intern year. We surveyed residents in 2009. PGY-1 residents completed a Likert-scale type survey (which included questions from the validated Berlin questionnaire and others, developed based on input from local EBM experts). We administered the Berlin questionnaire to a subset of PGY-3 residents.
Forty-five PGY-3 (88%; n = 51) and 42 PGY-1 (91%; n = 46) residents completed the survey. Compared with PGY-1 residents pre-curriculum, PGY-3 residents were significantly more confident in their knowledge of pre- and posttest probability (mean difference, 1.14; P = .002), number needed to harm (mean difference, 1.09; P = .002), likelihood ratio (mean difference, 1.01; P = .003), formulation of a focused clinical question (mean difference, 0.98; P = .001), and critical appraisal of therapy articles (mean difference, 0.91; P = .002). Perceived confidence was significantly lower for PGY-3 than post-curriculum PGY-1 residents on relative risk (mean difference, −0.86; P = .002), study design for prognosis questions (mean difference, −0.75; P = .004), number needed to harm (mean difference, −0.67; P = .01), ability to critically appraise systematic reviews (mean difference, −0.65, P = .009), and retrieval of evidence (mean difference, −0.56; P = .008), among others. There was no relationship between confidence with and actual knowledge of EBM topics.
Our findings demonstrate lower confidence among PGY-3 than among PGY-1 internal medicine residents for several EBM topics. PGY-3 residents demonstrated poor knowledge of several core topics taught during internship. Longitudinal EBM curricula throughout residency 5 help reinforce residents' EBM knowledge and their confidence.
The Internal Medicine In-Training Exam (IM-ITE) assesses the content knowledge of internal medicine trainees. Many programs use the IM-ITE to counsel residents, to create individual remediation plans, and to make fundamental programmatic and curricular modifications.
To assess the association between a multiple-choice testing program administered during 12 consecutive months of ambulatory and inpatient elective experience and IM-ITE percentile scores in third post-graduate year (PGY-3) categorical residents.
Retrospective cohort study.
One hundred and four categorical internal medicine residents. Forty-five residents in the 2008 and 2009 classes participated in the study group, and the 59 residents in the three classes that preceded the use of the testing program, 2005–2007, served as controls.
A comprehensive, elective rotation specific, multiple-choice testing program and a separate board review program, both administered during a continuous long-block elective experience during the twelve months between the second post-graduate year (PGY-2) and PGY-3 in-training examinations.
We analyzed the change in median individual percent correct and percentile scores between the PGY-1 and PGY-2 IM-ITE and between the PGY-2 and PGY-3 IM-ITE in both control and study cohorts. For our main outcome measure, we compared the change in median individual percentile rank between the control and study cohorts between the PGY-2 and the PGY-3 IM-ITE testing opportunities.
After experiencing the educational intervention, the study group demonstrated a significant increase in median individual IM-ITE percentile score between PGY-2 and PGY-3 examinations of 8.5 percentile points (p < 0.01). This is significantly better than the increase of 1.0 percentile point seen in the control group between its PGY-2 and PGY-3 examination (p < 0.01).
A comprehensive multiple-choice testing program aimed at PGY-2 residents during a 12-month continuous long-block elective experience is associated with improved PGY-3 IM-ITE performance.
Internal Medicine In-Training Exam; multiple-choice testing; medical knowledge
It is challenging to create an educational and satisfying experience in the outpatient setting. We developed a 3-year ambulatory curriculum that addresses the special needs of our categorical medicine residents with distinct learning objectives for each year of training and clinical experiences and didactic sessions to meet these goals. All PGY1 residents spend 1 month on a general medicine ambulatory care rotation. PGY2 residents spend 3 months on an ambulatory block focusing on 8 core medicine subspecialties. Third-year residents spend 2 months on an advanced ambulatory rotation. The curriculum was started in July 2000 and has been highly regarded by the house staff, with statistically significant improvements in the PGY2 and PGY3 evaluation scores. By enhancing outpatient clinical teaching and didactics with an emphasis on the specific needs of our residents, we have been able to reframe the thinking and attitudes of a group of inpatient-oriented residents.
medical education; residency training; ambulatory medicine
Evidence-based medicine (EBM) has been widely integrated into residency curricula, although results of randomized controlled trials and long term outcomes of EBM educational interventions are lacking. We sought to determine if an EBM workshop improved internal medicine residents' EBM knowledge and skills and use of secondary evidence resources.
This randomized controlled trial included 48 internal medicine residents at an academic medical center. Twenty-three residents were randomized to attend a 4-hour interactive workshop in their PGY-2 year. All residents completed a 25-item EBM knowledge and skills test and a self-reported survey of literature searching and resource usage in their PGY-1, PGY-2, and PGY-3 years.
There was no difference in mean EBM test scores between the workshop and control groups at PGY-2 or PGY-3. However, mean EBM test scores significantly increased over time for both groups in PGY-2 and PGY-3. Literature searches, and resource usage also increased significantly in both groups after the PGY-1 year.
We were unable to detect a difference in EBM knowledge between residents who did and did not participate in our workshop. Significant improvement over time in EBM scores, however, suggests EBM skills were learned during residency. Future rigorous studies should determine the best methods for improving residents' EBM skills as well as their ability to apply evidence during clinical practice.
General Internal Medicine (GIM) has recently been approved as a subspecialty by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. As such, there is a need to define areas of knowledge that a General Internist must learn in those two years of training. There is limited literature as to what competencies are needed in a GIM practice. Draft competencies for GIM (4th and 5th year residents in internal medicine) training were developed over eight years with input from many stakeholders. Practicing General Internists were surveyed and asked their perspective as to the level of importance of each of these competencies for GIM training. They were also asked if training gaps exist in current training programs. The survey was offered widely online in both English and French to gain perspectives from as many different contexts as possible.
157 General Internists, in practice on average for 15 years, responded from all of Canada's provinces and territories. Practice profiles were diverse (large urban centers to rural centers). The majority of the competencies surveyed were perceived as important to attain at least proficiency in. Perioperative care, risk reduction, and the management of common, emergent, and complex internal medicine problems were identified as key areas to focus training programs on, with respondents perceiving these should be mastered to an expert level. Training gaps were identified, most frequently in that of the manager role (example managing practice).
This is the first study we are aware of to attempt to isolate the opinions of practicing Canadian General Internists as to the major competencies that should be mastered as a General Internist. We suggest that "generalism" in the context of GIM, does not mean a bit of knowledge about everything but that defined objectives for training in this 'newest' of Royal College subspecialties can be identified. This includes mastery of core areas such as perioperative care, risk reduction, and management of common, emergent and multiple internal medicine problems. The training gaps identified need to be addressed to ensure that General Internists continue to provide excellence in health care delivery.
Objective. Our purpose was to investigate radiology fellowship directors' and recent fellows' experiences and perceptions with regard to the fellowship application and selection process and to compare these experiences and perceptions. Materials and Methods. Institutional review board approval was obtained. We conducted an online survey of the memberships of three radiology subspecialty societies between October 2009 and December 2009 to learn about radiologists' views regarding various aspects of radiology fellowships. Results. In the process of selecting fellows, program directors and recent fellows consider performance during the radiology residency and the quality or prestige of the residency program as the most important objective factors, and the personal interview, letters of recommendation, and personality as the most important subjective factors. 25% of the program directors were in the match, and 41% of the recent fellows were in the match. Most (48%) of program directors favored a match, but most (56%) of the recent fellows disfavored participating in a match. Both program directors and recent fellows expressed satisfaction with the fellowship application and selection process. Conclusion. There was no majority support for a fellowship match among program directors and recent fellows and less support among recent fellows. Recent fellows appear more satisfied with the current selection and application process than program directors.
The care of patients with HIV is increasingly focused on outpatient chronic disease management. It is not known to what extent internal medicine residents in the US are currently being trained in or encouraged to provide primary care for this population of patients.
To survey internal medicine residency program directors about their attitudes regarding training in outpatient HIV care and current program practices.
Program directors were surveyed first by email. Non-responding programs were mailed up to two copies of the survey.
All internal medicine residency program directors in the US.
Program director attitudes and residency descriptions.
Of the 372 program directors surveyed, 230 responded (61.8 %). Forty-two percent of program directors agreed that it is important to train residents to be primary care providers for patients with HIV. Teaching outpatient-based HIV curricula was a priority for 45.1%, and 56.5% reported that exposing residents to outpatient HIV clinical care was a high priority. Only 46.5% of programs offer a dedicated rotation in outpatient HIV care, and 50.5% of programs have curricula in place to teach about outpatient HIV care. Only 18.8% of program directors believed their graduates had the skills to be primary providers for patients with HIV, and 70.6% reported that residents interested in providing care for patients with HIV pursued ID fellowships. The strongest reasons cited for limited HIV training during residency were beliefs that patients with HIV prefer to be seen and receive better care in ID clinics compared to general medicine clinics.
With a looming HIV workforce shortage, we believe that internal medicine programs should create educational experiences that will provide their residents with the skills and knowledge necessary to meet the healthcare needs of this population.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-010-1398-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
HIV/AIDS; primary care; medical education; residency education; workforce
While Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) skills are increasingly being taught in medical schools, teaching quality has been insufficient, so that incoming pediatric residents lack adequate EBM skills required for patient care. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a brief teaching module developed to improve EBM skills of pediatric residents.
With-in subjects study design with pre- and post-test evaluation was performed in a large urban pediatric residency training program in Brooklyn, New York. We included PGY-1s during intern orientation, while second and third year pediatric residents were selected based on schedule availability. Sixty-nine residents were enrolled into the study, 60 (87%) completed the training. An EBM training module consisting of three or four weekly two-hour seminars was conducted. The module was designed to teach core EBM skills including (1) formulating answerable clinical questions, (2) searching the evidence, (3) critical appraisal skills including validity and applicability, and (4) understanding levels of evidence and quantitative results for therapy articles. A portion of the Fresno test of competence in EBM was used to assess EBM skills. The test presented a clinical scenario that was followed by nine short answer questions. One to three questions were used to assess EBM skills for each of the four core skills. The κ co-efficient for inter-rater reliability was 0.74 (95% CI: 0.56–0.92).
Prior to the training module, the residents achieved a mean score of 17% correct overall. Post intervention, the mean score increased to 63% with improvement in each EBM category. A mean of 4.08 more questions (out of 9) were answered correctly after the training (95% CI of 3.44–4.72).
A brief training module was effective in improving EBM skills of pediatric residents.
Internal medicine residents must be competent in advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) for board certification.
To use a medical simulator to assess postgraduate year 2 (PGY-2) residents' baseline proficiency in ACLS scenarios and evaluate the impact of an educational intervention grounded in deliberate practice on skill development to mastery standards.
Pretest-posttest design without control group. After baseline evaluation, residents received 4, 2-hour ACLS education sessions using a medical simulator. Residents were then retested. Residents who did not achieve a research-derived minimum passing score (MPS) on each ACLS problem had more deliberate practice and were retested until the MPS was reached.
Forty-one PGY-2 internal medicine residents in a university-affiliated program.
Observational checklists based on American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines with interrater and internal consistency reliability estimates; deliberate practice time needed for residents to achieve minimum competency standards; demographics; United States Medical Licensing Examination Step 1 and Step 2 scores; and resident ratings of program quality and utility.
Performance improved significantly after simulator training. All residents met or exceeded the mastery competency standard. The amount of practice time needed to reach the MPS was a powerful (negative) predictor of posttest performance. The education program was rated highly.
A curriculum featuring deliberate practice dramatically increased the skills of residents in ACLS scenarios. Residents needed different amounts of training time to achieve minimum competency standards. Residents enjoy training, evaluation, and feedback in a simulated clinical environment. This mastery learning program and other competency-based efforts illustrate outcome-based medical education that is now prominent in accreditation reform of residency education.
mastery learning; medical simulation; residency education
The increased demand for clinician-educators in academic medicine necessitates additional training in educational skills to prepare potential candidates for these positions. Although many teaching skills training programs for residents exist, there is a lack of reports in the literature evaluating similar programs during fellowship training.
To describe the implementation and evaluation of a unique program aimed at enhancing educational knowledge and teaching skills for subspecialty medicine fellows and chief residents.
Fellows as Clinician-Educators (FACE) program is a 1-year program open to fellows (and chief residents) in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Iowa.
The course involves interactive monthly meetings held throughout the academic year and has provided training to 48 participants across 11 different subspecialty fellowships between 2004 and 2009.
FACE participants completed a 3-station Objective Structured Teaching Examination using standardized learners, which assessed participants' skills in giving feedback, outpatient precepting, and giving a mini-lecture. Based on reviews of station performance by 2 independent raters, fellows demonstrated statistically significant improvement on overall scores for 2 of the 3 cases. Participants self-assessed their knowledge and teaching skills prior to starting and after completing the program. Analyses of participants' retrospective preassessments and postassessments showed improved perceptions of competence after training.
The FACE program is a well-received intervention that objectively demonstrates improvement in participants' teaching skills. It offers a model approach to meeting important training skills needs of subspecialty medicine fellows and chief residents in a resource-effective manner.
To quantify the prevalence, outcomes, and cost of surgical resident research.
Summary Background Data
General surgery is unique among graduate medical education programs because a large percentage of residents interrupt their clinical training to spend 1-3 years performing full-time research. No comprehensive data exists on the scope of this practice.
Survey sent to all 239 program directors of general surgery residencies participating in the National Resident Matching Program.
Response rate was 200/239 (84%). A total of 381 out of 1052 trainees (36%) interrupt residency to pursue full-time research. The mean research fellowship length is 1.7 years, with 72% of trainees performing basic science research. A significant association was found between fellowship length and post-residency activity, with a 14.7% increase in clinical fellowship training and a 15.2% decrease in private practice positions for each year of full-time research (p<0.0001). Program directors at 31% of programs reported increased clinical duties for research fellows as a result of ACGME work hour regulations for clinical residents, while a further 10% of programs are currently considering such changes. It costs $41.5 million to pay the 634 trainees who perform research fellowships each year, the majority of which is paid for by departmental funds (40%) and institutional training grants (24%).
Interrupting residency to perform a research fellowship is a common and costly practice among general surgery residents. While performing a research fellowship is associated with clinical fellowship training after residency, it is unclear to what extent this practice leads to the development of surgical investigators after post-graduate training.
Although criteria are available to guide the selection of general internal medicine (GIM) fellowship programs, the factors actually used in this process are unclear. Using a survey of current GIM fellows, we determined that most received information from their residency advisors, and many viewed them as the most important source of fellowship information. Program location was the top selection factor for fellows, followed by research opportunities, availability of a mentor, and the reputation of the program. This information may be useful to both fellowship candidates as an additional selection guide and to program directors seeking to best structure and market their fellowships.
fellowships and scholarships; career choice; questionnaires; internal medicine
Pathology Informatics is a new field; a field that is still defining itself even as it begins the formalization, accreditation, and board certification process. At the same time, Pathology itself is changing in a variety of ways that impact informatics, including subspecialization and an increased use of data analysis. In this paper, we examine how these changes impact both the structure of Pathology Informatics fellowship programs and the fellows’ goals within those programs.
Materials and Methods:
As part of our regular program review process, the fellows evaluated the value and effectiveness of our existing fellowship tracks (Research Informatics, Clinical Two-year Focused Informatics, Clinical One-year Focused Informatics, and Clinical 1 + 1 Subspecialty Pathology and Informatics). They compared their education, informatics background, and anticipated career paths and analyzed them for correlations between those parameters and the fellowship track chosen. All current and past fellows of the program were actively involved with the project.
Fellows’ anticipated career paths correlated very well with the specific tracks in the program. A small set of fellows (Clinical – one or two year – Focused Informatics tracks) anticipated clinical careers primarily focused in informatics (Director of Informatics). The majority of the fellows, however, anticipated a career practicing in a Pathology subspecialty, using their informatics training to enhance that practice (Clinical 1 + 1 Subspecialty Pathology and Informatics Track). Significantly, all fellows on this track reported they would not have considered a Clinical Two-year Focused Informatics track if it was the only track offered. The Research and the Clinical One-year Focused Informatics tracks each displayed unique value for different situations.
It seems a “one size fits all” fellowship structure does not fit the needs of the majority of potential Pathology Informatics candidates. Increasingly, these fellowships must be able to accommodate the needs of candidates anticipating a wide range of Pathology Informatics career paths, be able to accommodate Pathology's increasingly subspecialized structure, and do this in a way that respects the multiple fellowships needed to become a subspecialty pathologist and informatician. This is further complicated as Pathology Informatics begins to look outward and takes its place in the growing, and still ill-defined, field of Clinical Informatics, a field that is not confined to just one medical specialty, to one way of practicing medicine, or to one way of providing patient care.
Clinical informatics training; clinical informatics; fellowship tracks; informatics fellowship training; informatics teaching; pathology informatics fellowship; pathology informatics training; pathology informatics
Physician workforce projections by the Institute of Medicine require enhanced training in geriatrics for all primary care and subspecialty physicians. Defining essential geriatrics competencies for internal medicine and family medicine residents would improve training for primary care and subspecialty physicians. The objectives of this study were to (1) define essential geriatrics competencies common to internal medicine and family medicine residents that build on established national geriatrics competencies for medical students, are feasible within current residency programs, are assessable, and address the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education competencies; and (2) involve key stakeholder organizations in their development and implementation.
Initial candidate competencies were defined through small group meetings and a survey of more than 100 experts, followed by detailed item review by 26 program directors and residency clinical educators from key professional organizations. Throughout, an 8-member working group made revisions to maintain consistency and compatibility among the competencies. Support and participation by key stakeholder organizations were secured throughout the project.
The process identified 26 competencies in 7 domains: Medication Management; Cognitive, Affective, and Behavioral Health; Complex or Chronic Illness(es) in Older Adults; Palliative and End-of-Life Care; Hospital Patient Safety; Transitions of Care; and Ambulatory Care. The competencies map directly onto the medical student geriatric competencies and the 6 Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education Competencies.
Through a consensus-building process that included leadership and members of key stakeholder organizations, a concise set of essential geriatrics competencies for internal medicine and family medicine residencies has been developed. These competencies are well aligned with concerns for residency training raised in a recent Medicare Payment Advisory Commission report to Congress. Work is underway through stakeholder organizations to disseminate and assess the competencies among internal medicine and family medicine residency programs.
Early recognition and management of chronic kidney disease (CKD) are associated with better outcomes. Internal medicine residency should prepare physicians to diagnose and manage CKD.
To examine whether residency training and program characteristics were associated with CKD knowledge and investigate the effectiveness of an internet-based training module in improving CKD knowledge, we analyzed data from CKD training modules administered annually to U.S. internal medicine residents from July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2009. Baseline CKD knowledge was assessed using pre-tests. The modules’ effectiveness was evaluated by post-tests. Comparisons were performed using X2 tests and paired t-tests.
Of 4,702 residents, 38%, 33%, and 29% were program year (PGY)-1, PGY-2, and PGY-3, respectively. Baseline CKD knowledge was poor, with mean pre-test scores of 45.1-57.0% across the four years. The lowest pre-test performance was on CKD recognition. Pre-test scores were better with higher training levels (P-trend < 0.001 except 2005–2006 [P-trend = 0.35]). Affiliation with a renal fellowship program or program location within a region of high end-stage kidney disease prevalence was not associated with better baseline CKD knowledge. Completion of the CKD module led to significant improvements from pre- to post-test scores (mean improvement 27.8% [SD: 21.3%] which were consistent from 2005 to 2009.
Knowledge of diagnosis and management of CKD improves during residency training but remains poor among graduating residents. Web-based training can be effective in educating physicians on CKD-related issues. Studies are needed to determine whether knowledge gained from such an intervention translates to improved care of CKD patients.
Kidney disease; Education; Internet; Primary care
This paper examines current issues concerning surgical fellowship training in Canada. Other than information from a few studies of fellowship training in North America, there are scant data on this subject in the literature. Little is known about the demographic characteristics of those who pursue fellowship training in Canada, what the experiences and expectations are of fellows and their supervisors with respect to the strengths and weaknesses of this level of training, or how this level of education fits in with Canadian undergraduate and postgraduate medical training. We summarize current knowledge about fellowship training in Canada as it pertains to demographic characteristics, finances, work hours, residency training, preparation for clinical and research work and satisfaction with training. Most information on surgical fellowship training comes from the United States. As such, we used information from American studies to supplement the Canadian data. Because a surgical fellowship experience in Canada may be different from that in the United States, we propose that Canadian surgical fellows and their supervisors should be surveyed to gain an understanding of such information. This knowledge could be used to improve surgical fellowship training in Canada.
The American Board of Internal Medicine Certification Examination (ABIM-CE) is one of several methods used to assess medical knowledge, an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) core competency for graduating internal medicine residents. With recent changes in graduate medical education program directors and internal medicine residents are seeking evidence to guide decisions regarding residency elective choices. Prior studies have shown that formalized elective curricula improve subspecialty ABIM-CE scores. The primary aim of this study was to evaluate whether the number of subspecialty elective exposures or the specific subspecialties which residents complete electives in impact ABIM-CE scores.
ABIM-CE scores, elective exposures and demographic characteristics were collected for MedStar Georgetown University Hospital internal medicine residents who were first-time takers of the ABIM-CE in 2006–2010 (n=152). Elective exposures were defined as a two-week period assigned to the respective subspecialty. ABIM-CE score was analyzed using the difference between the ABIM-CE score and the standardized passing score (delta-SPS). Subspecialty scores were analyzed using percentage of correct responses. Data was analyzed using GraphPad Prism version 5.00 for Windows.
Paired elective exposure and ABIM-CE scores were available in 131 residents. There was no linear correlation between ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS and the total number of electives or the number of unique elective exposures. Residents with ≤14 elective exposures had higher ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS than those with ≥15 elective exposures (143.4 compared to 129.7, p=0.051). Repeated electives in individual subspecialties were not associated with significant difference in mean ABIM-CE delta-SPS.
This study did not demonstrate significant positive associations between individual subspecialty elective exposures and ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS score. Residents with ≤14 elective exposures had higher ABIM-CE mean delta-SPS than those with ≥15 elective exposures suggesting there may be an “ideal” number of elective exposures that supports improved ABIM-CE performance. Repeated elective exposures in an individual specialty did not correlate with overall or subspecialty ABIM-CE performance.
Resident education; Gender; Elective; Subspecialty; Graduate medical education
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requires an annual evaluation of all ACGME-accredited residency and fellowship programs to assess program quality. The results of this evaluation must be used to improve the program. This manuscript describes a metric to be used in conducting ACGME-mandated annual program review of ACGME-accredited anesthesiology residencies and fellowships.
A variety of metrics to assess anesthesiology residency and fellowship programs are identified by the authors through literature review and considered for use in constructing a program "report card."
Metrics used to assess program quality include success in achieving American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) certification, performance on the annual ABA/American Society of Anesthesiology In-Training Examination, performance on mock oral ABA certification examinations, trainee scholarly activities (publications and presentations), accreditation site visit and internal review results, ACGME and alumni survey results, National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) results, exit interview feedback, diversity data and extensive program/rotation/faculty/curriculum evaluations by trainees and faculty. The results are used to construct a "report card" that provides a high-level review of program performance and can be used in a continuous quality improvement process.
An annual program review is required to assess all ACGME-accredited residency and fellowship programs to monitor and improve program quality. We describe an annual review process based on metrics that can be used to focus attention on areas for improvement and track program performance year-to-year. A "report card" format is described as a high-level tool to track educational outcomes.
Directors of postgraduate internal medicine programs face many problems in program design, particularly when numbers of house staff continue to decrease. This paper examines the training requirements of a resident in internal medicine and proposes a curriculum based on set rotations in the three key areas of training--subspecialty services, critical care and the clinical teaching unit. The distribution of time in these three areas and the balance of exposure to inpatients and outpatients are discussed in detail. This program design ensures exposure to all the key elements of internal medicine in 3 years and should prevent significant gaps in knowledge at the time of certification. The implications for "service" in major teaching hospitals is discussed. Hospital departments and administrators must confront the prospect of hospital units without house staff. Most important, program directors must resist sacrificing the pedagogic essentials of a training program for service requirements.
Online medical education curricula offer new tools to teach and evaluate learners. The effect on educational outcomes of using learner feedback to guide curricular revision for online learning is unknown.
In this study, qualitative analysis of learner feedback gathered from an online curriculum was used to identify themes of learner feedback, and changes to the online curriculum in response to this feedback were tracked. Learner satisfaction and knowledge gains were then compared from before and after implementation of learner feedback.
37,755 learners from 122 internal medicine residency training programs were studied, including 9437 postgraduate year (PGY)1 residents (24.4 % of learners), 9864 PGY2 residents (25.5 %), 9653 PGY3 residents (25.0 %), and 6605 attending physicians (17.0 %). Qualitative analysis of learner feedback on how to improve the curriculum showed that learners commented most on the overall quality of the educational content, followed by specific comments on the content. When learner feedback was incorporated into curricular revision, learner satisfaction with the instructive value of the curriculum (1 = not instructive; 5 = highly instructive) increased from 3.8 to 4.1 (p < 0.001), and knowledge gains (i.e., post test scores minus pretest scores) increased from 17.0 % to 20.2 % (p < 0.001).
Learners give more feedback on the factual content of a curriculum than on other areas such as interactivity or website design. Incorporating learner feedback into curricular revision was associated with improved educational outcomes. Online curricula should be designed to include a mechanism for learner feedback and that feedback should be used for future curricular revision.
Online education; Curriculum development; Feedback; Learner satisfaction
It is assumed that the performance of more senior residents is superior to that of interns, but this has not been assessed objectively.
To determine whether adherence to national guidelines for outpatient preventive health services differs by year of residency training.
One hundred twenty Internal Medicine residents, postgraduate year (PGY)- 1 and PGY -2, attending a University Internal Medicine teaching clinic between June 2000 and May 2003.
We studied 6 preventive health care services offered or received by patients by abstracting data from 1,017 patient records. We examined the differences in performance between PGY-1 and PGY-2 residents.
Postgraduaute year-2 residents did not statistically outperform PGY-1 residents on any measure. The overall proportion of patients receiving appropriate preventive health services for pneumococcal vaccination, advising tobacco cessation, breast and colon cancer screening, and lipid screening was similar across levels of training. PGY-1s outperformed PGY-2s for tobacco use screening (58%, 51%, P=.03). These results were consistent after accounting for clustering of patients within provider and adjusting for patient age, gender, race and insurance, resident gender, and number of visits during the measurement year.
Overall, patients cared for by PGY-2 residents did not receive more outpatient preventive health services than those cared for by PGY-1 residents. Efforts should be made to ensure quality patient care in the outpatient setting for all levels of training.
internship and residency; quality indicators; health care; preventive health services
Patient safety culture (PSC) examines how individuals perceive an organization's commitment and proficiency in health and safety management. The primary objective of this study was to assess hospital PSC from the perspective of internal medicine house staff, and to compare the results by postgraduate year (PGY) of training and to national hospital benchmark data.
The authors modified and used a version of the Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture (HSOPSC), which has 12 PSC dimensions. Each dimension uses a 5-level Likert scale of agreement (“Strongly disagree” to “Strongly agree”) or frequency (“Never” to “Always”). The survey was distributed to 68 PGY-2 and PGY-3 internal medicine house staff at an academic medical center between December 2006 and February 2007. Composite scores were created for each respondent by calculating the proportion of positive responses for each domain. Domain score means were compared between PGYs and to survey data from hospitals that administered the HSOPSC (ie, benchmark data).
The overall response rate was 85.3% (58/68). House staff scored lower on 6 and 4 of the 12 PSC dimensions, when compared with the overall national hospital and medicine unit benchmarks, respectively (P < .05). PGY-3 staff scored lower than PGY-2 staff in 2 dimensions (P < .05).
PGY-2 and PGY-3 internal medicine house staff at our institution were in agreement on most of the PSC dimensions. Overall, house staff PSC was significantly lower than national hospital benchmark data for half of the dimensions. The results of this study will be used to establish internal PSC benchmarks and to identify targets for interventions to further improve PSC.
It is suggested that this study may provide benchmark baseline data for assessing the impact of fellowship training on the morbidity, oncologic efficacy, continence results, and potency outcomes of new surgeons performing robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy.
Background and Objectives:
We examined 1-year functional and oncologic outcomes for robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy (RALP) from a single surgeon entering practice directly from fellowship training.
We prospectively analyzed the first 100 RALPs performed by one fellowship-trained robotic surgeon. Data included resident involvement during the procedure, perioperative data, and surgical complications (scored using the Clavien grading system). Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) data were captured using the EPIC questionnaire at baseline (prior to surgery) and at 1-year follow-up.
Eighty-two patients (82%) had hospital stays of 2 days or less without any postoperative complications, urethral catheter removal was within 14 days of surgery, and none required readmission to the hospital. The overall positive margin rate was 21% (19% for patients with T2 disease). Clavien grades 1 through 4 complication rates, respectively, were 4%, 10%, 1%, and 1%. There were no deaths, reoperations, or bladder neck contractures. One patient (1%) required a blood transfusion within the 90-day perioperative period. At 1-year follow-up, 78% of patients reported wearing no pads; 41.3% of patients with baseline and 1-year follow-up data reported having intercourse.
We provide baseline data pertaining to the morbidity, oncologic efficacy, continence results, and potency outcomes of new surgeons performing RALP.
Robotics; Prostatectomy; Training; Prostatic neoplasms