Transition from chief residency to specialty training: issues and solutions

Don K. Nakayama, Linda G. Phillips, R. Edward Newsome, George M. Fuhrman, John L. Tarpley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Three fourths of chief residents in general surgery receive further specialty training. The end to start-of-year transition can create administrative conflicts between the residency and the specialty training program. An Internet-based questionnaire surveyed general surgery and surgical specialty program directors to define issues and possible solutions associated with end to start-ofyear transitions using a Likert scale. There was an overall response rate of 17.5 per cent, 19.6 per cent among general surgery directors, and 15.8 per cent among specialty directors. Program directors in general surgery felt strongly that the transition is an administrative problem (P < 0.001). They opposed extra days off at the end of the chief resident year or ending in mid-June, which specialty directors favored (P < 0.001). Directors of specialty programs opposed starting the year 1 or 2 weeks after July 1, a solution that general surgery directors favored (P < 0.001). More agreement was reached on whether chief residents should take vacation week(s) at the end of the academic year, having all general surgery levels start in mid-June, and orientation programs in July for specialty trainees. Program directors acknowledge that year-end scheduling transitions create administrative and patient care problems. Advancing the start of the training year in mid-June for all general surgery levels is a potential solution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-90
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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