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On September 10th, the UNC Department of Anesthesiology Residency Program was thrilled to return to in person to host our annual CA-1 Family Anesthesia Day! In 2022, the event drew over 50 CA-1 residents and their support persons, the program’s highest attendance to date since the event’s 2017 inception.

At the start of a new academic year, UNC Anesthesiology’s CA-1 class begins its clinical anesthesiology rotations in the summer. The Department hosts its CA-1 Family Anesthesia Day in the weeks that follow to give support persons the opportunity to meet residency peers and program leaders who become like UNC Anesthesiology family to CA-1s over their last three years of training. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the residency program hosted CA-1 Family Anesthesia Day virtually in 2020 and 2021. The program enthusiastically returned to facilitating an in-person, engaging event safely in 2022.

UNC Anesthesiology Residency Program Director Susie Martinelli, MD, reflected: “It was so wonderful to be back in person this year. So many people worked hard to make this event successful! It gave program leadership and peer residents the opportunity to meet the support persons of our CA-1s firsthand. We are so grateful that support persons traveled from all over the globe to attend.

There are others to thank as well, and as we look ahead to our 2023 CA-1 Family Anesthesia Day, we’re so pleased with the all-hands-in team effort that enabled us to pull off a successful event this year!”

We are also grateful to the many department members and UNC School of Medicine staff who helped run this event. Faculty members Dr. Rob Isaak, Dr. Emily Teeter and Dr. Amy Goetzinger presented and helped facilitate at stations. Some of our senior residents and their support persons served on a panel and helped to facilitate hands-on stations: CA-2 Damon Wallace and his husband Heath, CA-2 Liz Willis and her mom Allison, and CA-3 Jose Puentes and his wife Daria. CA-2 Matt Eady covered call so Damon Wallace could help out. Our undergraduate student, Ella Sepesi, helped to gather supplies and helped us throughout the event. Our Business Manager Chris Meinecke ran out for last-minute supplies the evening before, and Residency Coordinator Elizabeth Aguero and Executive Assistant Robin Brennan coordinated lunch.

The station set-up and organizing provided by UNC SIM Lab staff Britney Carlton, Jeff McQueen and others from this team made a critical difference in optimizing our planned activities for CA-1 Family Anesthesia Day. SIM Lab support for our stations with hands-on opportunities and demonstrations helped our support persons in attendance gain an understanding of how residents learn via simulation.

Associate Program Director Rob Isaak, DO, added, “The CA-1 residents and their support persons had an opportunity to see a simulated operating room experience and practice procedures such as central lines, epidurals, and airway management. These experiences gave the support persons a chance to better understand the life of being an anesthesiology resident. With this knowledge, the support persons gain a greater relatedness to their resident so they can better support them throughout their next three years of training.”