Philosophy of the EM Residency

Concern for the Resident

Philosophy_resident.jpgEducating an emergency physician requires far more than faculty, library resources, and a patient base. Equally important are the intangible qualities found in a residency program that influence learning as much as the academic course of study or the clinical experience. You will always find the faculty members at both of our departments approachable and available for assistance whether it is in the ED or after hours. The attending faculty maintain a presence in the Emergency Department 24 hours a day. Spirited discussions and new ideas are encouraged and nurtured in open, non-competitive exchanges. Recognizing that the mastery of medicine is a life-long learning process, faculty members readily seek help from colleagues and other sources when answering residents' questions or in making decisions with difficult cases. Throughout training, the importance of teamwork among all members of the nursing and medical staff is emphasized. Concern for each resident comes not only from the program directors and the attending staff, but from fellow residents as well. We expect our residents to support each other and the department as a whole, shouldering the tasks of the department as a team.

Concern for the Patient

Philosophy_patient.jpgOur department carries out its educational commitment in an environment centered around patient care. In addition to educating residents, the attending physician also sees their own patients and thus shares in the demands the ED places on the resident staff. In this way, the attending serves as a role model while the resident assimilates the knowledge necessary to become a truly superior emergency physician.


Developing the Whole Physician

Philosophy_whole.jpgHouse officers acquire many of their personal skills and attitudes through experiences obtained prior to residency training. Even so, the faculty at UNC Hospitals and Wake Medical Center recognize that medical education is more than just the memorization of a body of therapeutic facts. In private practice you will often be the only in-hospital physician and your success depends on gaining and keeping the trust of many types of people: patients, physicians in other specialties, and support personnel. You must master the art of working as both a consultant and the mature leader of an emergency department team. Our program acknowledges the importance of these personal qualities in the practice of medicine and works to encourage their development during the residency years.