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PGY 1 - Intern Year

Overall Curriculum

  • Rotate four months in an ACGME-accredited surgical service, which may include rotations in general surgery, plastic surgery, trauma ICU or vascular surgery.
  • Rotate three months in an ACGME-accredited neurology service learning the fundamentals of a comprehensive neurological history and examination and evaluating and developing treatment plans for a variety of neurological diseases.
  • Rotate five months in neurosurgery service learning the day-to-day clinical and academic functions of the neurosurgical service to enable a smooth transition to PGY-2.
  • Attend all neuroscience didactic conferences, including subspecialty program conferences.
  • Attend outpatient clinics according to subspecialty schedule.
  • Take SANS online self assessment examination.
  • Review AANS/SNS online courses and complete the assessment exams for resident portfolio.     
  • Maintain case log through ACGME site and provide all required documentation for resident portfolio.
  • Obtain certification in ATLS/ACLS and Fundamental Critical Care Support.
  • Obtain certification in ventriculostomies and twist-drill subdural hematoma drains and provide appropriate documentation to resident coordinator.


Reading List, Supplemental Reading

The following AANS/SNS online sessions are expected to be completed during the summer months. 

  1. Functional Spinal Cord Anatomy and Spinal Cord Injury Syndromes
  2. Clinical Evaluation of the Unconscious Patient
  3. Evaluation of Cervical Spinal Trauma
  4. Fluoroscopy Personnel Initial Training Part 1: Radiation Safety
  5. Diagnostic Imaging Evaluation of Spinal Instability
  6. Nonoperative Treatment of Severe Head Injury
  7. Technique for Ventriculostomy


Overall Goals and Objectives

The first-year rotations are organized to provide each resident an opportunity to rotate through the trauma intensive care unit and the vascular surgery, plastic surgery and neurology departments. This allows maximum exposure to subspecialties to learn preoperative/postoperative and outpatient care with an emphasis on history and physical examination, interpersonal and communication skills, and professionalism.


Medical Knowledge – After the first year of training the resident will be able to:

  • Manage subspecialty medical disorders based on a thorough knowledge of basic and clinical science.

Patient Care and Assessment – After the first year of training the resident will be able to:

  • Direct basic management plans for inpatient and outpatient care under the supervision of appropriate senior resident and attending staff of each subspecialty.
  • Develop the necessary skills to formulate a comprehensive patient history and physical.
  • Provide basic interpretation of laboratory results and radiological studies.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge of anatomy in patient care situations both in and out of the operating room.

Practice Based Learning – After for first year of training the resident will be able to:

  • Develop the necessary skills to formulate an accurate patient history and physical to be presented to the senior resident or attending staff of various subspecialties.
  • Choose the appropriate diagnostic radiological and laboratory studies to establish an accurate diagnosis of the patients.
  • Develop technical skills for general surgery patients.
  • Develop technical skills for neurosurgery patients including ventriculostomies and twist drill drain procedures after being supervised and certified.
  • Take responsibility for errors and learn from them.

System Based Practice – After the first year the resident will be able to:

  • Understand the structure, function and interface of multiple complex subspecialty programs and organizations.
  • Choose the appropriate cost-effective diagnostic and laboratory studies to establish an accurate diagnosis for the various subspecialties.
  • Utilize computers and new technology.

Interpersonal and Communication Skills – After the first year of training the resident will be able to:

  • Collaborate effectively with colleagues and other health professionals.

Professionalism – After the first year of training the resident will be able to:

  • Demonstrate respect, responsibility and sensitivity in relating to colleagues at all levels.
  • Demonstrate consistent adherence of ethical principles and sensitivity to all patients regardless of gender, age, culture, religion, sexual preference, socioeconomic status, beliefs, behaviors or disabilities.
  • Promote the principles of confidentiality and informed consent.

Evaluations are sent to the respective program directors at the end of every subspecialty rotation. The neurosurgery program director relies on these evaluations to determine if a resident has satisfactory performance and is mastering essential competencies to advance into the PGY-2 neurosurgery year.

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