Otolaryngology Residency Overview
Historically, the two independent training programs at Wilford Hall and Brooke combined in 1995 and the first residents to enter the combined program started their training in July of 1996. Since 1995, the combined program has seen 100% of the graduating residents sit for and pass their board exams during their first year out of residency. Prior to the combination of the two programs, each separate program had a first time 100% pass rate for graduating residents for at least the previous 10 years. The average experience of residents graduating from the integrated program with three residents per year group is projected to be near 1600 surgical cases.
The teaching faculty: There are currently six staff assigned to Wilford Hall and four assigned to Brooke with fellowship trained staff in Head and Neck Oncology, Neuro-otology, Pediatric, and Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. All the faculty surgeons practice general Otolaryngology in addition to their fields of specialty interest.
Throughout the year there are several recurring didactic conferences. A combined lecture presentation and CPC scheduled for each Tuesday morning is presented in teleconference format by a faculty member of Wilford Hall, Brooke Army and the University of Texas. Conferences in Radiology and Pathology as well as labs in gross anatomy and temporal bone anatomy are scheduled monthly. In addition to these, residents may also attend nationally recognized courses for concentrated teaching in Head and Neck pathology, broncho-esophagology, rhinoplasty and otology during their residency. The schedule also includes three months of dedicated, staff mentored research time during the PG 3 or 4 year of training.
First year residents in Otolaryngology (PGY2) function as members of a clinical team under the direction of a senior resident and the staff. They are expected to gain experience in pre-op, post-op and outpatient management through seeing clinic and performing hands-on patient care. During this year they are expected to develop specialty oriented surgical skills through lab exercises, independent study of surgical atlases and supervised participation in surgery. They should begin focusing their study through reading assigned periodicals, at least one major text, and the Home Study Course. An important part of this education includes the Audiology and Otolaryngology Basic Science courses early in the year. They are responsible for selecting a topic, performing a literature search and developing a realistic research protocol. They are also expected to maintain their physical fitness and pass the APFT as scheduled.
Second year residents also function as members of a clinical team under the direction of a senior resident and staff. They are expected assume greater responsibility for pre-op, post-op and outpatient management decisions, to instruct junior residents and medical students, and to prepare and present assigned subjects at conferences. They are responsible for developing a realistic research protocol and for having the final version approved by the Department of Clinical Investigation. They are also expected to maintain their physical fitness and pass the APFT as scheduled.
Third year residents are expected to become increasingly involved in patient care decisions, both as a team member and independently. They act as a team leader during any absence of the senior resident and are expected to actively supervise students, interns and junior residents. Major clinical segments of this year include rotations concentrating on Head and Neck oncology, Otology, and in the clinic OR concentrating on nasal and facial plastic surgery. A major didactic segment of this year includes concentrated study of Head and Neck pathology at the AFIP. They are responsible for completing data collection for the resident research project initiated during the PGY-3 year.
Fourth year residents (PGY5) are clinical team leaders, responsible for the scheduling and clinical operation of a busy surgical service. In addition to these administrative tasks, they are responsible for all patient care decisions carried out by their team. They oversee the management of all outpatients and direct all aspects of the pre-op evaluation, surgical planning and post-operative care of surgical patients on the service. They are the primary surgeon in all major cases operated by their team and are responsible for supervising junior residents in surgical cases appropriate for their level of training. They are responsible for completing a resident research project, for continued independent study / preparation for specialty board exams, and for their personal military preparedness and physical fitness.