The Emergency Medicine Residency Program at Christ Medical Center started in July 1977. At that time, six full-time attending staff and five residents comprised the department. Today, the program is approved for 33 residents (11 per year), with nearly 30 full-time attending staff and over a dozen part-time physicians. In 2000, the residency received its fourth consecutive five-year accreditation from the RRC-EM.
Patient care and the concurrent resident-attending interaction form the foundation of resident education. To provide an optimal educational environment, as many as three attending physicians staff the general care and critical care areas of the department. They also provide direct patient care as needed.
All residents are selected through the match at the EM-1 level. However, the three-year curriculum can be modified for residents with prior training in another specialty. Four-week rotations are arranged so that blocks of time spent in the Emergency Department are interspersed with outside rotations. Thus, no resident is away from the "home base" for long.
The attending staff monitors all patient care provided. If a resident's care plan provides satisfactory management, the attending will not interfere. However, the attending staff will maintain overall responsibility for patient care. Residents are encouraged to follow up on difficult and complex admissions. These often form the basis for case-related presentations at the weekly conference. With three portable ultrasound machines physically in the Emergency Department, residents have the opportunity to incorporate bedside ultrasound into their daily clinical practice.
Emergency medicine residents are scheduled for 18 10-hour shifts per rotation in the Emergency Department. On outside rotations, emergency medicine resident's call schedules are equivalent to those of other residents on that service; residents also are expected to attend educational conferences provided by that department. In addition, all emergency medicine residents are expected to attend weekly Emergency Medicine Conferences.
Written evaluations are submitted upon completion of each outside rotation. Resident performance within the Emergency Department is evaluated every six months, with each resident meeting privately with the program director to review these evaluations. Similarly, residents evaluate off-service and Emergency Department rotations and attendings twice each year.