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1.  Are Commonly Used Resident Measurements Associated with Procedural Skills in Internal Medicine Residency Training? 
Background
Acquisition of competence in performing a variety of procedures is essential during Internal Medicine (IM) residency training.
Purposes
Determine the rate of procedural complications by IM residents; determine whether there was a correlation between having 1 or more complications and institutional procedural certification status or attending ratings of resident procedural skill competence on the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) monthly evaluation form (ABIM-MEF). Assess if an association exists between procedural complications and in-training examination and ABIM board certification scores.
Methods
We retrospectively reviewed all procedure log sheets, procedural certification status, ABIM-MEF procedural skills ratings, in-training exam and certifying examination (ABIM-CE) scores from the period 1990–1999 for IM residency program graduates from a training program.
Results
Among 69 graduates, 2,212 monthly procedure log sheets and 2,475 ABIM-MEFs were reviewed. The overall complication rate was 2.3/1,000 procedures (95% CI: 1.4–3.1/1,000 procedure). With the exception of procedural certification status as judged by institutional faculty, there was no association between our resident measurements and procedural complications.
Conclusions
Our findings support the need for a resident procedural competence certification system based on direct observation. Our data support the ABIM’s action to remove resident procedural competence from the monthly ABIM-MEF ratings.
doi:10.1007/s11606-006-0068-1
PMCID: PMC1824756  PMID: 17356968
procedural skills; Internal Medicine residency training program; ABIM evaluation
2.  Are Commonly Used Resident Measurements Associated with Procedural Skills in Internal Medicine Residency Training? 
Background
Acquisition of competence in performing a variety of procedures is essential during Internal Medicine (IM) residency training.
Purposes
Determine the rate of procedural complications by IM residents; determine whether there was a correlation between having 1 or more complications and institutional procedural certification status or attending ratings of resident procedural skill competence on the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) monthly evaluation form (ABIM-MEF). Assess if an association exists between procedural complications and in-training examination and ABIM board certification scores.
Methods
We retrospectively reviewed all procedure log sheets, procedural certification status, ABIM-MEF procedural skills ratings, in-training exam and certifying examination (ABIM-CE) scores from the period 1990–1999 for IM residency program graduates from a training program.
Results
Among 69 graduates, 2,212 monthly procedure log sheets and 2,475 ABIM-MEFs were reviewed. The overall complication rate was 2.3/1,000 procedures (95% CI: 1.4–3.1/1,000 procedure). With the exception of procedural certification status as judged by institutional faculty, there was no association between our resident measurements and procedural complications.
Conclusions
Our findings support the need for a resident procedural competence certification system based on direct observation. Our data support the ABIM’s action to remove resident procedural competence from the monthly ABIM-MEF ratings.
doi:10.1007/s11606-006-0068-1
PMCID: PMC1824756  PMID: 17356968
procedural skills; Internal Medicine residency training program; ABIM evaluation
3.  A nomogram to predict the probability of passing the American Board of Internal Medicine examination 
Medical Education Online  2012;17:10.3402/meo.v17i0.18810.
Background
Although the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) certification is valued as a reflection of physicians’ experience, education, and expertise, limited methods exist to predict performance in the examination.
Purpose
The objective of this study was to develop and validate a predictive tool based on variables common to all residency programs, regarding the probability of an internal medicine graduate passing the ABIM certification examination.
Methods
The development cohort was obtained from the files of the Cleveland Clinic internal medicine residents who began training between 2004 and 2008. A multivariable logistic regression model was built to predict the ABIM passing rate. The model was represented as a nomogram, which was internally validated with bootstrap resamples. The external validation was done retrospectively on a cohort of residents who graduated from two other independent internal medicine residency programs between 2007 and 2011.
Results
Of the 194 Cleveland Clinic graduates used for the nomogram development, 175 (90.2%) successfully passed the ABIM certification examination. The final nomogram included four predictors: In-Training Examination (ITE) scores in postgraduate year (PGY) 1, 2, and 3, and the number of months of overnight calls in the last 6 months of residency. The nomogram achieved a concordance index (CI) of 0.98 after correcting for over-fitting bias and allowed for the determination of an estimated probability of passing the ABIM exam. Of the 126 graduates from two other residency programs used for external validation, 116 (92.1%) passed the ABIM examination. The nomogram CI in the external validation cohort was 0.94, suggesting outstanding discrimination.
Conclusions
A simple user-friendly predictive tool, based on readily available data, was developed to predict the probability of passing the ABIM exam for internal medicine residents. This may guide program directors’ decision-making related to program curriculum and advice given to individual residents regarding board preparation.
doi:10.3402/meo.v17i0.18810
PMCID: PMC3475012  PMID: 23078794
board examination; in-training examination; internal medicine; residents; program directors
4.  Predicting Pass Rates on the American Board of Internal Medicine Certifying Examination 
Our objective was to determine the ability of the internal medicine In-Training Examination (ITE) to predict pass or fail outcomes on the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) certifying examination and to develop an externally validated predictive model and a simple equation that can be used by residency directors to provide probability feedback for their residency programs. We collected a study sample of 155 internal medicine residents from the three Virginia internal medicine programs and a validation sample of 64 internal medicine residents from a residency program outside Virginia. Scores from both samples were collected across three class cohorts. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov z test indicated no statistically significant difference between the distribution of scores for the two samples (z = 1.284, p = .074). Results of the logistic model yielded a statistically significant prediction of ABIM pass or fail performance from ITE scores (Wald = 35.49, SE = 0.036, df = 1, p < .005) and overall correct classifications for the study sample and validation sample at 79% and 75%, respectively. The ITE is a useful tool in assessing the likelihood of a resident's passing or failing the ABIM certifying examination but is less predictive for residents who received ITE scores between 49 and 66.
doi:10.1046/j.1525-1497.1998.00122.x
PMCID: PMC1496976  PMID: 9669571
certifying examination; in-training examination; education; predictions; residents
5.  Charting the Road to Competence: Developmental Milestones for Internal Medicine Residency Training 
Background
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Outcome Project requires that residency program directors objectively document that their residents achieve competence in 6 general dimensions of practice.
Intervention
In November 2007, the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) and the ACGME initiated the development of milestones for internal medicine residency training. ABIM and ACGME convened a 33-member milestones task force made up of program directors, experts in evaluation and quality, and representatives of internal medicine stakeholder organizations. This article reports on the development process and the resulting list of proposed milestones for each ACGME competency.
Outcomes
The task force adopted the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition as a framework the internal medicine milestones, and calibrated the milestones with the expectation that residents achieve, at a minimum, the “competency” level in the 5-step progression by the completion of residency. The task force also developed general recommendations for strategies to evaluate the milestones.
Discussion
The milestones resulting from this effort will promote competency-based resident education in internal medicine, and will allow program directors to track the progress of residents and inform decisions regarding promotion and readiness for independent practice. In addition, the milestones may guide curriculum development, suggest specific assessment strategies, provide benchmarks for resident self-directed assessment-seeking, and assist remediation by facilitating identification of specific deficits. Finally, by making explicit the profession's expectations for graduates and providing a degree of national standardization in evaluation, the milestones may improve public accountability for residency training.
doi:10.4300/01.01.0003
PMCID: PMC2931179  PMID: 21975701
6.  Impact of subspecialty elective exposures on outcomes on the American board of internal medicine certification examination 
BMC Medical Education  2012;12:94.
Background
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.
Methods
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.
Results
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.
Conclusions
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.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-12-94
PMCID: PMC3480921  PMID: 23057635
Resident education; Gender; Elective; Subspecialty; Graduate medical education
7.  Teaching Internal Medicine Residents Quality Improvement Techniques using the ABIM’s Practice Improvement Modules 
Summary
Introduction/aim
Standard curricula to teach Internal Medicine residents about quality assessment and improvement, important components of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education core competencies practiced-based learning and improvement (PBLI) and systems-based practice (SBP), have not been easily accessible.
Program description
Using the American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM) Clinical Preventative Services Practice Improvement Module (CPS PIM), we have incorporated a longitudinal quality assessment and improvement curriculum (QAIC) into the 2 required 1-month ambulatory rotations during the postgraduate year 2. During the first block, residents complete the PIM chart reviews, patient, and system surveys. The second block includes resident reflection using PIM data and the group performing a small test of change using the Plan–Do–Study–Act (PDSA) cycle in the resident continuity clinic.
Program Evaluation
To date, 3 resident quality improvement (QI) projects have been undertaken as a result of QAIC, each making significant improvements in the residents’ continuity clinic. Resident confidence levels in QI skills (e.g., writing an aim statement [71% to 96%, P < .01] and using a PDSA cycle [9% to 89%, P < .001]) improved significantly.
Discussion
The ABIM CPS PIM can be used by Internal Medicine residency programs to introduce QI concepts into their residents’ outpatient practice through encouraging practice-based learning and improvement and systems-based practice.
doi:10.1007/s11606-008-0549-5
PMCID: PMC2517947  PMID: 18449612
Internal Medicine residents; quality improvement; practiced-based learning and improvement; systems-based practice; practice improvement module
8.  International medical graduates (IMGs) needs assessment study: comparison between current IMG trainees and program directors 
Background
International Medical Graduates (IMGs) training within the Canadian medical education system face unique difficulties. The purpose of this study was to explore the challenges IMGs encounter from the perspective of trainees and their Program Directors.
Methods
Program Directors of residency programs and IMGs at the University of Toronto were anonymously surveyed and asked to rate (using a 5-point Likert scale; 1 = least important – 5 = most important) the extent to which specific issues were challenging to IMGs and whether an orientation program (in the form of a horizontal curriculum) should be implemented for incoming IMGs prior to starting their residency.
Results
Among the IMGs surveyed, Knowledge of the Canadian Healthcare System received the highest mean score (3.93), followed by Knowledge of Pharmaceuticals and Hospital formularies (3.69), and Knowledge of the Hospital System (3.69). In contrast, Program Directors felt that Communication with Patients (4.40) was a main challenge faced by IMGs, followed by Communication with Team Members (4.33) and Basic Clinical Skills (4.28).
Conclusion
IMGs and Program Directors differ in their perspectives as to what are considered challenges to foreign-trained physicians entering residency training. Both groups agree that an orientation program is necessary for incoming IMGs prior to starting their residency program.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-8-42
PMCID: PMC2546389  PMID: 18759968
9.  A Multiple Choice Testing Program Coupled with a Year-long Elective Experience is Associated with Improved Performance on the Internal Medicine In-Training Examination 
Journal of General Internal Medicine  2011;26(11):1253-1257.
Background
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.
Objective
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.
Design
Retrospective cohort study.
Participants
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.
Intervention
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.
Measures
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.
Results
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).
Conclusion
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.
doi:10.1007/s11606-011-1696-7
PMCID: PMC3208479  PMID: 21499831
Internal Medicine In-Training Exam; multiple-choice testing; medical knowledge
10.  Examination outcomes for international medical graduates pursuing or completing family medicine residency training in Quebec 
Canadian Family Physician  2010;56(9):912-918.
ABSTRACT
OBJECTIVE
To review the success of international medical graduates (IMGs) who are pursuing or have completed a Quebec residency training program and examinations.
DESIGN
We retrospectively reviewed IMGs’ success rates on the pre-residency Collège des médecins du Québec medical clinical sciences written examination and objective structured clinical examination, as well as on the post-residency Certification Examination in Family Medicine.
SETTING
Quebec.
PARTICIPANTS
All IMGs taking their examinations between 2001 and 2008, inclusive, and Canadian and American graduates taking their examinations during this same period.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
Success rates for IMGs on the pre-residency and post-residency examinations, compared with success rates for Canadian and American graduates.
RESULTS
Success rates on the pre-residency clinical examinations remained below 50% from 2001 to 2008 for IMGs. Similarly, during the same period, the average success rate on the Certification examination was 56.0% for IMGs, compared with 93.5% for Canadian and American medical graduates.
CONCLUSION
Despite pre-residency competency screening and in-program orientation and supports, a substantial number of IMGs in Quebec are not passing their Certification examinations. Another study is under way to analyze reasons for some IMGs’ lack of success and to find ways to help IMGs complete residency training successfully and pass the Certification examination.
PMCID: PMC2939121  PMID: 20841596
11.  Demographic and Work-Life Study of Chief Residents: A Survey of the Program Directors in Internal Medicine Residency Programs in the United States 
Context
Chief residents play a crucial role in internal medicine residency programs in administration, academics, team building, and coordination between residents and faculty. The work-life and demographic characteristics of chief residents has not been documented.
Objective
To delineate the demographics and day-to-day activities of chief residents.
Design, Setting, and Participants
The Survey Committee of the Association of Program Directors in Internal Medicine (APDIM) developed a Web-based questionnaire. A link was sent in November 2006 by e-mail to 381 member programs (98%). Data collection ended in April 2007.
Measurements
Data collected include the number of chief residents per residency, the ratio of chief residents per resident, demographics, and information on salary/benefits, training and mentoring, and work life.
Results
The response rate was 62% (N  =  236). There was a mean of 2.5 chief residents per program, and on average there was 1 chief resident for 17.3 residents. Of the chief residents, 40% were women, 38% international medical graduates, and 11% minorities. Community-based programs had a higher percentage of postgraduate year 3 (PGY-3)–level chief residents compared to university-based programs (22% versus 8%; P  =  .02). Mean annual salary was $60 000, and the added value of benefits was $21 000. Chief residents frequently supplement their salaries through moonlighting. The majority of formal training occurs by attending APDIM meetings. Forty-one percent of programs assign academic rank to chief residents.
Conclusion
Most programs have at least 2 chief residents and expect them to perform administrative functions, such as organizing conferences. Most programs evaluate chief residents regularly in administration, teaching, and clinical skills.
doi:10.4300/01.01.0025
PMCID: PMC2931204  PMID: 21975723
12.  How do IMGs compare with Canadian medical school graduates in a family practice residency program? 
Canadian Family Physician  2010;56(9):e318-e322.
ABSTRACT
OBJECTIVE
To compare international medical graduates (IMGs) with Canadian medical school graduates in a family practice residency program.
DESIGN
Analysis of the results of the in-training evaluation reports (ITERs) and the Certification in Family Medicine (CCFP) examination results for 2 cohorts of IMGs and Canadian-trained graduates between the years 2006 and 2008.
SETTING
St Paul’s Hospital (SPH) in Vancouver, BC, a training site of the University of British Columbia (UBC) Family Practice Residency Program.
PARTICIPANTS
In-training evaluation reports were examined for 12 first-year and 9 second-year Canadian-trained residents at the SPH site, and 12 first-year and 12 second-year IMG residents at the IMG site at SPH; CCFP examination results were reviewed for all UBC family practice residents who took the May 2008 examination and disclosed their results.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
Pass or fail rates on the CCFP examination; proportions of evaluations in each group of residents given each of the following designations: exceeds expectations, meets expectations, or needs improvement. The May 2008 CCFP examination results were reviewed.
RESULTS
Compared with the second-year IMGs, the second-year SPH Canadian-trained residents had a greater proportion of exceeds expectations designations than the IMGs. For the first-year residents, both the SPH Canadian graduates and IMGs had similar results in all 3 categories. Combining the results of the 2 cohorts, the Canadian-trained residents had 310 (99%) ITERs that were designated as either exceeds expectations or meets expectations, and only 3 (1%) ITERs were in the needs improvement category. The IMG results were 362 (97.6%) ITERs in the exceeds expectations or meets expectations categories; 9 (2%) were in the needs improvement category. Statistically these are not significant differences. Seven of the 12 (58%) IMG candidates passed the CCFP examination compared with 59 of 62 (95%) of the UBC family practice residents.
CONCLUSION
The IMG residents compared favourably with their Canadian-trained colleagues when comparing ITERs but not in passing the CCFP examination. Further research is needed to elucidate these results.
PMCID: PMC2939132  PMID: 20841570
13.  The State of Evaluation in Internal Medicine Residency 
Journal of General Internal Medicine  2008;23(7):1010-1015.
Background
There are no nationwide data on the methods residency programs are using to assess trainee competence. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has recommended tools that programs can use to evaluate their trainees. It is unknown if programs are adhering to these recommendations.
Objective
To describe evaluation methods used by our nation’s internal medicine residency programs and assess adherence to ACGME methodological recommendations for evaluation.
Design
Nationwide survey.
Participants
All internal medicine programs registered with the Association of Program Directors of Internal Medicine (APDIM).
Measurements
Descriptive statistics of programs and tools used to evaluate competence; compliance with ACGME recommended evaluative methods.
Results
The response rate was 70%. Programs were using an average of 4.2–6.0 tools to evaluate their trainees with heavy reliance on rating forms. Direct observation and practice and data-based tools were used much less frequently. Most programs were using at least 1 of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)’s “most desirable” methods of evaluation for all 6 measures of trainee competence. These programs had higher support staff to resident ratios than programs using less desirable evaluative methods.
Conclusions
Residency programs are using a large number and variety of tools for evaluating the competence of their trainees. Most are complying with ACGME recommended methods of evaluation especially if the support staff to resident ratio is high.
doi:10.1007/s11606-008-0578-0
PMCID: PMC2517950  PMID: 18612734
graduate medical education; residency; ACGME; competency
14.  Optimizing the Implementation of Practice Improvement Modules in Training: Lessons from Educators 
Background
The American Board of Internal Medicine approved the use of Practice Improvement Modules (PIMs) to help training programs teach and assess practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) and systems-based practice (SBP).
Methods
We surveyed individuals who ordered a PIM in a residency or fellowship training program between June 2006 and August 2009. The 43 programs that volunteered to participate completed a 30-minute anonymous online survey.
Results
Program directors or associate program directors led the PIM process in 30 programs (70%). Trainees' degrees of involvement in PIMs were highly variable between programs, and several respondents felt that trainees were either not sufficiently engaged or not engaged with enough consistency. The most common activity for trainee involvement was data collection through patient surveys or chart review, although only 17 programs (40%) provided protected time for this activity. Few trainees participated in higher level activities such as data analysis or identification for areas of improvement or were given leadership roles; yet most respondents reported that completing the PIM helped trainees learn basic principles of QI and develop competence in PBLI and SBP and that PIM completion improved the program's ability to develop QI initiatives and resulted in program or institutional improvements, including sustainable improvement in patient care. Most respondents reported that the outcome warranted the effort to complete PIMs.
Conclusions
PIMs may be a valuable but underused educational experience for trainees as well as training programs. Focusing on particular themes and facets of PIMs may facilitate implementation.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-11-00281.1
PMCID: PMC3613323  PMID: 24404231
15.  Instituting systems-based practice and practice-based learning and improvement: a curriculum of inquiry 
Medical Education Online  2013;18:10.3402/meo.v18i0.21612.
Background
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requires that training programs integrate system-based practice (SBP) and practice-based learning and improvement (PBLI) into internal medicine residency curricula.
Context and setting
We instituted a seminar series and year-long-mentored curriculum designed to engage internal medicine residents in these competencies.
Methods
Residents participate in a seminar series that includes assigned reading and structured discussion with faculty who assist in the development of quality improvement or research projects. Residents pursue projects over the remainder of the year. Monthly works in progress meetings, protected time for inquiry, and continued faculty mentorship guide the residents in their project development. Trainees present their work at hospital-wide grand rounds at the end of the academic year. We performed a survey of residents to assess their self-reported knowledge, attitudes and skills in SBP and PBLI. In addition, blinded faculty scored projects for appropriateness, impact, and feasibility.
Outcomes
We measured resident self-reported knowledge, attitudes, and skills at the end of the academic year. We found evidence that participants improved their understanding of the context in which they were practicing, and that their ability to engage in quality improvement projects increased. Blinded faculty reviewers favorably ranked the projects’ feasibility, impact, and appropriateness. The ‘Curriculum of Inquiry’ generated 11 quality improvement and research projects during the study period. Barriers to the ongoing work include a limited supply of mentors and delays due to Institutional Review Board approval. Hospital leadership recognizes the importance of the curriculum, and our accreditation manager now cites our ongoing work.
Conclusions
A structured residency-based curriculum facilitates resident demonstration of SBP and practice-based learning and improvement. Residents gain knowledge and skills though this enterprise and hospitals gain access to trainees who help to solve ongoing problems and meet accreditation requirements.
doi:10.3402/meo.v18i0.21612
PMCID: PMC3776321  PMID: 24044686
graduate medical education; competencies; longitudinal curriculum
16.  Predicting performance using background characteristics of international medical graduates in an inner-city university-affiliated Internal Medicine residency training program 
Background
IMGs constitute about a third of the United States (US) internal medicine graduates. US residency training programs face challenges in selection of IMGs with varied background features. However data on this topic is limited. We analyzed whether any pre-selection characteristics of IMG residents in our internal medicine program are associated with selected outcomes, namely competency based evaluation, examination performance and success in acquiring fellowship positions after graduation.
Methods
We conducted a retrospective study of 51 IMGs at our ACGME accredited teaching institution between 2004 and 2007. Background resident features namely age, gender, self-reported ethnicity, time between medical school graduation to residency (pre-hire time), USMLE step I & II clinical skills scores, pre-GME clinical experience, US externship and interest in pursuing fellowship after graduation expressed in their personal statements were noted. Data on competency-based evaluations, in-service exam scores, research presentation and publications, fellowship pursuance were collected. There were no fellowships offered in our hospital in this study period. Background features were compared between resident groups according to following outcomes: (a) annual aggregate graduate PGY-level specific competency-based evaluation (CBE) score above versus below the median score within our program (scoring scale of 1 – 10), (b) US graduate PGY-level specific resident in-training exam (ITE) score higher versus lower than the median score, and (c) those who succeeded to secure a fellowship within the study period. Using appropriate statistical tests & adjusted regression analysis, odds ratio with 95% confidence intervals were calculated.
Results
94% of the study sample were IMGs; median age was 35 years (Inter-Quartile range 25th – 75th percentile (IQR): 33–37 years); 43% women and 59% were Asian physicians. The median pre-hire time was 5 years (IQR: 4–7 years) and USMLE step I & step II clinical skills scores were 85 (IQR: 80–88) & 82 (IQR: 79–87) respectively. The median aggregate CBE scores during training were: PG1 5.8 (IQR: 5.6–6.3); PG2 6.3 (IQR 6–6.8) & PG3 6.7 (IQR: 6.7 – 7.1). 25% of our residents scored consistently above US national median ITE scores in all 3 years of training and 16% pursued a fellowship.
Younger residents had higher aggregate annual CBE score than the program median (p < 0.05). Higher USMLE scores were associated with higher than US median ITE scores, reflecting exam-taking skills. Success in acquiring a fellowship was associated with consistent fellowship interest (p < 0.05) and research publications or presentations (p <0.05). None of the other characteristics including visa status were associated with the outcomes.
Conclusion
Background IMG features namely, age and USMLE scores predict performance evaluation and in-training examination scores during residency training. In addition enhanced research activities during residency training could facilitate fellowship goals among interested IMGs.
doi:10.1186/1472-6920-9-42
PMCID: PMC2717068  PMID: 19594918
17.  Ambulatory care training during core internal medicine residency training: the Canadian experience. 
OBJECTIVE: To determine the status of ambulatory care training of core internal medicine residents in Canada. DESIGN: Mail survey. PARTICIPANTS: All 16 program directors of internal medicine residency training programs in Canada. OUTCOME MEASURES: The nature and amount of ambulatory care training experienced by residents, information about the faculty tutors, and the sources and types of patients seen by the residents. As well, the program directors were asked for their opinions on the ideal ambulatory care program and the kinds of teaching skills required of tutors. RESULTS: All of the directors responded. Fifteen stated that the ambulatory care program is mandatory, and the other stated that it is an elective. Block rotations are more common than continuity-of-care assignments. In 12 of the programs 10% or less of the overall training time is spent in ambulatory care. In 11 the faculty tutors comprise a mixture of generalists and subspecialists. The tutors simultaneously care for patients and teach residents in the ambulatory care setting in 14 of the schools. Most are paid through fee-for-service billing. The respondents felt that the ideal program should contain a mix of general and subspecialty ambulatory care training. There was no consensus on whether it should be a block or continuity-of-care experience, but the directors felt that consultation and communication skills should be emphasized regardless of which type of experience prevails. CONCLUSIONS: Although there is a widespread commitment to provide core internal medicine residents with experience in ambulatory care, there is little uniformity in how this is achieved in Canadian training programs.
PMCID: PMC1485315  PMID: 8324688
18.  Resident Research and Scholarly Activity in Internal Medicine Residency Training Programs 
OBJECTIVES
1) To describe how internal medicine residency programs fulfill the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) scholarly activity training requirement including the current context of resident scholarly work, and 2) to compare findings between university and nonuniversity programs.
DESIGN
Cross-sectional mailed survey.
SETTING
ACGME-accredited internal medicine residency programs.
PARTICIPANTS
Internal medicine residency program directors.
MEASUREMENTS
Data were collected on 1) interpretation of the scholarly activity requirement, 2) support for resident scholarship, 3) scholarly activities of residents, 4) attitudes toward resident research, and 5) program characteristics. University and nonuniversity programs were compared.
MAIN RESULTS
The response rate was 78%. Most residents completed a topic review with presentation (median, 100%) to fulfill the requirement. Residents at nonuniversity programs were more likely to complete case reports (median, 40% vs 25%; P =.04) and present at local or regional meetings (median, 25% vs 20%; P =.01), and were just as likely to conduct hypothesis-driven research (median, 20% vs 20%; P =.75) and present nationally (median, 10% vs 5%; P =.10) as residents at university programs. Nonuniversity programs were more likely to report lack of faculty mentors (61% vs 31%; P <.001) and resident interest (55% vs 40%; P =.01) as major barriers to resident scholarship. Programs support resident scholarship through research curricula (47%), funding (46%), and protected time (32%).
CONCLUSIONS
Internal medicine residents complete a variety of projects to fulfill the scholarly activity requirement. Nonuniversity programs are doing as much as university programs in meeting the requirement and supporting resident scholarship despite reporting significant barriers.
doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2005.40270.x
PMCID: PMC1490049  PMID: 15836549
ACGME; resident research; medical education; national survey
19.  Creation of an Innovative Inpatient Medical Procedure Service and a Method to Evaluate House Staff Competency 
Journal of General Internal Medicine  2004;19(5 Pt 2):510-513.
INTRODUCTION
Training residents in medical procedures is an area of growing interest. Studies demonstrate that internal medicine residents are inadequately trained to perform common medical procedures, and program directors report residents do not master these essential skills. The American Board of Internal Medicine requires substantiation of competence in procedure skills for all internal medicine residents; however, for most procedures, standards of competence do not exist.
OBJECTIVE
1) Create a new and standardized approach to teaching, performing, and evaluating inpatient medical procedures; 2) Determine the number of procedures required until trainees develop competence, by assessing both clinical knowledge and psychomotor skills; 3) Improve patient safety.
DESIGN
A Medical Procedure Service (MPS), consisting of select faculty who are experts at common inpatient procedures, was established to supervise residents performing medical procedures. Faculty monitor residents’ psychomotor performance, while clinical knowledge is taught through a complementary, comprehensive curriculum. After the completion of each procedure, the trainee and supervising faculty member independently complete online questionnaires.
RESULTS
During this pilot program, 246 procedures were supervised, with a pooled major complication rate of 3.7%. 123 thoracenteses were supervised, with a pneumothorax rate of 3.3%; this compares favorably with a pooled analysis of the literature. 87% of surveyed house staff felt the procedure service helped in their education of medical procedures.
CONCLUSIONS
The “see one, do one, teach one” model of procedure education is dangerously inadequate. Through the development of a Medical Procedure Service, and an associated procedure curriculum and a mechanism of evaluation, we hope to reduce the rate of complications and errors related to medical procedures and to determine at what point competency is achieved for these procedures.
doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2004.30161.x
PMCID: PMC1492327  PMID: 15109314
procedures; education; competence; complications
20.  Continuity Clinic Satisfaction and Valuation in Residency Training 
Journal of General Internal Medicine  2007;22(12):1704-1710.
Background
Internal Medicine residency training in ambulatory care has been judged inadequate, yet how trainees value continuity clinic and which aspects of clinic affect attitudes are unknown.
Objectives
To determine the value that Internal Medicine residents place on continuity clinic and how clinic precepting, operations, and patient panels affect its valuation.
Design and measurements
A survey on ambulatory care was developed, including questions on career choice and the value of clinical training experiences. Independent variables were Likert-scale ratings (1 = disagree strongly/no value; 3 = neutral; 5 = agree strongly/high value) on preceptors, patients, operations, and resident characteristics. Odds ratios and stepwise multivariate logistic regression with clustering were used to evaluate associations between clinic valuation and independent variables.
Subjects
Internal medicine residents at 3 residency programs.
Results
218 of 260 residents (83.8%) completed the survey. Resident ratings were highest on diversity of illness seen (4.1), medical record systems used (4.1), and contact with preceptors who were receptive to questions (4.8). Resident ratings were lowest on economic diversity of patients (2.7), interruptions from inpatient wards (3.1), and contact with preceptors who taught history and physical exam skills (3.5). High ratings on all precepting issues and nearly all operational issues were associated with valuing clinic. With multivariate analysis, high ratings of preceptors as role models were most strongly associated with valuing clinic (corrected relative risk 3.44). A planned career in general Internal Medicine was not associated with valuing clinic.
Conclusions
Satisfaction with preceptors, particularly as role models, and clinic operations correlate with the value residents place on continuity clinic.
doi:10.1007/s11606-007-0412-0
PMCID: PMC2219834  PMID: 17932723
ambulatory education; clinic; precepting; residency training
21.  Addressing the Scholarly Activity Requirements for Residents: One Program's Solution 
Background
Scholarly activity as a component of residency education is becoming increasingly emphasized by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. “Limited or no evidence of resident or faculty scholarly activity” is a common citation given to family medicine residency programs by the Review Committee for Family Medicine.
Objective
The objective was to provide a model scholarly activity curriculum that has been successful in improving the quality of graduate medical education in a family medicine residency program, as evidenced by a record of resident academic presentations and publications.
Methods
We provide a description of the Clinical Scholars Program that has been implemented into the curriculum of the Trident/Medical University of South Carolina Family Medicine Residency Program.
Results
During the most recent 10-year academic period (2000–2010), a total of 111 residents completed training and participated in the Clinical Scholars Program. This program has produced more than 24 presentations during national and international meetings of medical societies and 15 publications in peer-reviewed medical journals. In addition, many of the projects have been presented during meetings of state and regional medical organizations.
Conclusions
This paper presents a model curriculum for teaching about scholarship to family medicine residents. The success of this program is evidenced by the numerous presentations and publications by participating residents.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-10-00201.1
PMCID: PMC3179232  PMID: 22942967
22.  Procedural Experience and Comfort Level in Internal Medicine Trainees 
BACKGROUND
The American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) has recommended a specific number of procedures be done as a minimum standard for ensuring competence in various medical procedures. These minimum standards were determined by consensus of an expert panel and may not reflect actual procedural comfort or competence.
OBJECTIVE
To estimate the minimum number of selected procedures at which a majority of internal medicine trainees become comfortable performing that procedure.
DESIGN
Cross-sectional, self-administered survey.
SETTING
A military-based, a community-based, and 2 university-based programs.
PARTICIPANTS
Two hundred thirty-two internal medicine residents.
MEASUREMENTS
Survey questions included number of specific procedures performed, comfort level with performing specific procedures, and whether respondents desired further training in specific procedures. The comfort threshold for a given procedure was defined as the number of procedures at which two thirds or more of the respondents reported being comfortable or very comfortable performing that procedure.
RESULTS
For three of seven procedures selected, residents were comfortable performing the procedure at or below the number recommended by the ABIM as a minimum requirement. However, residents needed more procedures than recommended by the ABIM to feel comfortable with central venous line placement, knee joint aspiration, lumbar puncture, and thoracentesis. Using multivariate logistic regression analysis, variables independently associated with greater comfort performing selected procedures included increased number performed, more years of training, male gender, career goals, and for skin biopsy, training in the community-based program. Except for skin biopsy, comfort level was independent of training site. A significant number of advanced-year house officers in some programs had little experience in performing selected common ambulatory procedures.
CONCLUSION
Minimum standards for certifying internal medicine residents may need to be reexamined in light of house officer comfort level performing selected procedures.
doi:10.1046/j.1525-1497.2000.91104.x
PMCID: PMC1495602  PMID: 11089715
ABIM; procedure comfort level; residents
23.  Alternative Approaches to Ambulatory Training: Internal Medicine Residents’ and Program Directors’ Perspectives 
ABSTRACT
BACKGROUND
Internal medicine ambulatory training redesign, including recommendations to increase ambulatory training, is a focus of national discussion. Residents’ and program directors’ perceptions about ambulatory training models are unknown.
OBJECTIVE
To describe internal medicine residents’ and program directors’ perceptions regarding ambulatory training duration, alternative ambulatory training models, and factors important for ambulatory education.
DESIGN
National cohort study.
PARTICIPANTS
Internal medicine residents (N = 14,941) and program directors (N = 222) who completed the 2007 Internal Medicine In-Training Examination (IM-ITE) Residents Questionnaire or Program Directors Survey, representing 389 US residency programs.
RESULTS
A total of 58.4% of program directors and 43.7% of residents preferred one-third or more training time in outpatient settings. Resident preferences for one-third or more outpatient training increased with higher levels of training (48.3% PGY3), female sex (52.7%), primary care program enrollment (64.8%), and anticipated outpatient-focused career, such as geriatrics. Most program directors (77.3%) and residents (58.4%) preferred training models containing weekly clinic. Although residents and program directors reported problems with competing inpatient-outpatient responsibilities (74.9% and 88.1%, respectively) and felt that absence of conflict with inpatient responsibilities is important for good outpatient training (69.4% and 74.2%, respectively), only 41.6% of residents and 22.7% of program directors supported models eliminating ambulatory sessions during inpatient rotations.
CONCLUSIONS
Residents’ and program directors’ preferences for outpatient training differ from recommendations for increased ambulatory training. Discordance was observed between reported problems with conflicting inpatient-outpatient responsibilities and preferences for models maintaining longitudinal clinic during inpatient rotations. Further study regarding benefits and barriers of ambulatory redesign is needed.
doi:10.1007/s11606-009-1015-8
PMCID: PMC2710468  PMID: 19475458
medical education-graduate; ambulatory care; curriculum/program evaluation; medical student and residency education
24.  Principles to Consider in Defining New Directions in Internal Medicine Training and Certification 
SGIM endoreses seven principles related to current thinking about internal medicine training: 1) internal medicine requires a full three years of residency training before subspecialization; 2) internal medicine residency programs must dramatically increase support for training in the ambulatory setting and offer equivalent opportunities for training in both inpatient and outpatient medicine; 3) in settings where adequate support and time are devoted to ambulatory training, the third year of residency could offer an opportunity to develop further expertise or mastery in a specific type or setting of care; 4) further certification in specific specialties within internal medicine requires the completion of an approved fellowship program; 5) areas of mastery in internal medicine can be demonstrated through modified board certification and recertification examinations; 6) certification processes throughout internal medicine should focus increasingly on demonstration of clinical competence through adherence to validated standards of care within and across practice settings; and 7) regardless of the setting in which General Internists practice, we should unite to promote the critical role that this specialty serves in patient care.
doi:10.1111/j.1525-1497.2006.00393.x
PMCID: PMC1828096  PMID: 16637826
education; medical; graduate; certification; internal medicine; hospitalists; ambulatory care
25.  The Canadian Association of Internes and Residents Committee on Family Medicine 
Canadian Family Physician  1986;32:685-689.
Family medicine residents across Canada represent a unique body of physicians with exciting and different training experiences. Some 30 residents from each of the 16 university-administered Canadian family medicine programs meet twice annually as a subcommittee of the Canadian Association of Internes and Residents (CAIR), to exchange ideas and discuss issues of relevance to family medicine programs. The CAIR Committee on Family Medicine (CAIR-CFM) has direct liaison with the College of Family Physicians of Canada through its Board of Directors and various educational committees. CAIR-CFM has also been actively involved in other independent projects directly affecting the training of family medicine residents, including a review of every family medicine program, accreditation of programs, and policy recommendations.
PMCID: PMC2327631  PMID: 21267122
Canadian Association of Internes and Residents; family medicine programs; residents

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