02 Feb

Drafting the Surgical Education "Research Roadmap"

Posted by: Brian George
in Blog
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On January 22nd, 2018, the members of the Procedural Learning and Safety Collaborative co-hosted a symposium with the American Board of Surgery, the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education, the Association of Program Directors in Surgery, and the Resident Review Committee for Surgery titled: “Performance, Assessment, and Patient Safety:  Defining the Roadmap for Quality Improvement in Surgical Education.” Participants included representatives the hosting organizations, general surgery residency program directors, faculty, residents, surgery department chairs and psychometricians working in the field of surgical education.

The goal of the symposium was to develop and prioritize surgical education research topics that could be pursued by the Procedural Learning and Safety Collaborative members.

Symposium attendees spent the first half of the day discussing and ranking possible research ideas, including ideas originally proposed by Stefanidis et al in 2015.  The six top-ranked research questions were developed into complete research proposals by small break-out groups during the second half of the day.  Each draft proposal was then pitched in a “shark tank” format to the entire group.

The top six research questions were, in order:

  1. What faculty development tools can be developed to enhance appropriate resident supervision?
  2. How do surgical residents impact the safety, quality, efficiency, and cost of surgical services within their hospitals?
  3. What is a “competent” surgeon?
  4. Which are the best methods to assess resident performance and competence (intraoperative and clinical, procedural and cognitive)?
  5. What are the most effective methods to improve faculty teaching ability and promote interest in teaching?
  6. What are the performance criteria a resident has to meet to be considered competent and before independent practice is allowed?


As the next step, the Procedural Learning and Safety Collaborative will convene working groups to further explore each of these important questions—and turn our time in Chicago into high impact improvements in the quality of surgical education.

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