Akron General Medical Center/NEOUCOM Residency Reviews

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by Pure Anergy, Oct 12, 2010.

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  1. Pure Anergy

    Pure Anergy 7+ Year Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    Posted on behalf of a current resident.

    Akron General Medical Center/NEOUCOM

    Overview: PGY1-3, 8 residents per class, academic program with community experience as well. Affiliated with Northeast Ohio University College of Medicine and Pharmacy. Level I trauma center. Program has never not filled.

    Affiliated hospitals: AGMC (main), Akron Children's (Level II trauma), MetroHealth (cleveland), University of Maryland Baltimore Shock Trauma. AGMC Stow and Montrose (community experience).

    Interview day: Changing this year (2010), used to be 6 interviews: 3 with faculty, 3 with residents but since it was such a long day for the applicants we are thinking of doing 3 faculty and 1-2 residents. Interviews 30 min each. We pay for your hotel the night before. Provide food and tours through AGMC and Akron Children's Hospital by residents. An optional tour of Akron is available, but you don't have to go.
    Night before, we go out to dinner with residents and applicants.

    Residents: 8 per class, mostly MD. Some DO's. Most from Ohio, rest are from all over. Mix of married and single, but mostly married, some with kids. We're social people. Work hard, play hard.

    Faculty/Staff: All EM trained and board certified. No FP, IM, etc. Tons of attendings, mix of old school, in between, and new school. Some are ABEM oral board examiners (super bonus for us) 2 Big Bonuses: 1. Dr. Beeson: former Summa PD..now came to the better place (hehehe, kinda joking), founder and president of CORD (Council of Residency Directors, you know the place where you get SLORs). Awesome and very well known in the world of EM.
    2. Dr. Jouriles: ACEP president-past before Angela Gardner, now on ACEP Board. Lots of connections and an awesome guy.
    Our staff is pretty great with a few "outliers", as with any program, very laid back and teach when they can.

    PGY1: MICU, SICU, Peds EM, Anes/US/Cards, Neuro, Research, 5 EM months. You also go to Columbus for the ACEP review (paid for by your funds).
    PGY2: CCU, Baltimore shock trauma, Ortho, Peds EM, Metro*, Radiology, Pediatric conscious sedation/US, rest are EM months.
    PGY3: Admin, elective, "Preattending" month- where you are an attending and patients are presented to you by PGY1&2 and rotators, PICU @ Children's hospital, and rest EM months.

    *Metro is still our 2nd trauma month (for procedures), but it may be scrapped in the future since we go to Shock Trauma in Baltimore (again, for procedures).

    You will get certified in : ACLS, BLS, ATLS, PALS with options to be instructors if it applies. If you get your ultrasound recs stuff in, you can also get accredited in that.

    Didactics: Once a week on Thur. 7a-noon. I'm not going to say "protected time" because that's just lame and all didactics are required to be that way according to the RRC. Don't ever let a program make you think that is a bonus, they are supposed to be that way. Moving along...

    We have a lecture classroom. Lectures provided by attending staff mostly, some off-service attendings, and EM residents. Simulation and oral boards at the end of every month (for all PGY levels), but simulation is pretty much open if you want to go do something on Sim Man at other times too.... Oh yea, we have a Simulation Center, probably wouldn't want to leave that out. We have to take monthly tests in relation to whatever rotation we are on, from the CORD website. No biggie. We read from Rosen's, but you can read from whatever your heart desires.

    Shifts: PGY 1-3 do 20-21 10hr shifts/month. Yes, I know this is a lot for upper levels (OSU can sympathize as well), that may change this year but no definite word yet. If you're doing research, radiology, or Peds conscious sedation its like 12-13 shifts.

    When you take vacation, you do not do 20 shifts/month.

    Also, during your regular EM months, once you have done PedsEM as an intern, you will do 2-3 shifts over @ Children's. This gives you constant Peds exposure.

    EMS: Each resident is assigned to a squad with an attending who is their director, and helps with training, simulations, lectures, etc.
    You do an EMS ride-along your first month as an intern.

    During PGY1 you will take a radiocall course and pass in order to take medical control calls when the paramedic isn't around (lunch or overnight). PGY 2 & 3 takes calls.

    Aeromedical: We have Medflight as our bird. The director is one of our attendings and will let you fly whenever you want, but there is no required flight rotation, all optional.

    Benefits: PGY1 $46,000 PGY2 $48,000 PGY3 $50,000. Subject to change the following year (usually goes up). Free healthcare, dental, eye. If your spouse is pregnant, you pretty much don't have to pay for anything. I was an inpatient (unfortunately), and the only thing I had to pay was $6.00 for my tv fee...if you want to really know firsthand. Free covered parking right across from the main entrance. Free food- $120/2 wks...which you never fully use. Optional 401k with match. Educational allowance: PGY1&2 $800 + $300 from GEMS (our EM group). PGY3 $1100.

    Gym membership in the hospital is $2.50 every 2 weeks deducted from your paycheck (I know, wicked cheap).

    Vacation: 3 weeks +1 week for conference, all yearly.

    Location: Akron, OH. Not a booming metropolis, but a nice city with nice suburbs and things to do. Good for singles and married with or without kids. Super affordable, good schools and suburbs for those with families. Akron is pretty much a suburb of Cleveland, which is like 30 min away if you want a bigger city to hang out in, and catch some games, hang out on the lake. Big sports town, has a minor league baseball team. Boston Mills skiing 20 minutes away. Marathon held annually here. College sports.

    Other questions:
    1. Why do you do 2 trauma months? Basically for procedures. Is it necessary? No. Some people just had no luck at either once place or the other, so
    the other usually is a backup. This may change and we may get rid of one. We see plenty of trauma's here, so don't think that volume is an issue.

    2. What is the EM resident's role during trauma? You are at the head of the bed, surgery/trauma team comes and it is usually run by trauma attending (if present), then trauma senior, and then you if no one else is there. You are responsible for airway and participation as a teammate during the rest of the trauma.

    3. Can you moonlight? Yes, starting 3rd year after you get your license. We have optional moonlighting at our community ED's Stow and Montrose, and some people drive elsewhere to do it. Moonlighting does count toward your duty hours.

    4. Do you get enough procedures? Yes. I filled most of my required numbers way before intern year ended, so did the rest of my classmates. When you're on ICU months, the attendings look to you first. ICU attendings love EM residents.

    5. How is your relationship with other services? Pretty good, since we rotate everywhere everyone gets to know us. Ive hung out with other off service residents.
    Every month, the residents association has a "3rd Friday", basically social time paid for by the hospital. Last month it was held at a nearby vineyard for wine tasting, month before on a cruise in Cle. Good place to mingle with other people.

    6. I/my wife may be pregnant, is this an issue? No. Tons of people are pregnant or wives are pregnant. Even our attendings are frequently pregnant. This is a question that isn't asked during interviews by us (but candidates always ask), so I'll just come out and say that we don't care if you plan on having a baby and we welcome it, big family here and we accommodate :) I must warn that drinking the water here may cause you to birth twins.....
    ortnakas likes this.
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  3. icymd

    icymd 2+ Year Member

    Feb 24, 2008
    i don't know about all the drama with turkish prisons the other person mentioned. not sure how much I trust what people post but here I am anyway. i'll tell you what I know which isn't much since I only rotated at summa and then I've got a question for anyone out there. as always you gotta trust your own observations first.


    -nice people. a few attendings are clearly not interested in teaching but I'm sure you get that everywhere. some are great and incredibly smart. beeson is nice but hard to read sometimes. I think he does go far for residents. the associate director, well . . . let's leave it at I probably don't know him, maybe he's open and friendly once you get to know him. a lot of residents are taken from the affiliated med school and this might lend to some of the resident classes having a cliquey feel. for the most part they seem nice enough, some friendlier than others. PAs and nurses very nice.
    -research is probably emphasized more here than at general. i think summa's pretty academic as beeson's involved in a lot of stuff.
    -curriculum very very fine tuned, cut out a lot of the not so useful like floor months, i think they probably listen to residents pretty well. they seem very on top of things.
    -better funded, brand new beautiful ed divided into zones, you cover your zone and aren't running all over.


    liked the people better even just based on the interview (of course I met the residents more than the faculty). felt like I would fit in better with them, maybe they were more laid back. I'm just goin on gut since i didn't rotate here. residents I met were all friendly, joking, laughing. kyriakedes seemed nice and I think he's there for residents from what i've heard. don't know much about associate director except he's leaving, but not cuz it's a bad program.
    -curriculum not as fine tuned, probably not as organized but then i haven't seen it firsthand. do a trauma month up in cleveland, which might be a pain to drive to.
    -not as well funded as summa, but I don't think you'll be lacking in anything you need, and compared to some programs it's really good. facilities not as nice as summa's, but they might be constructing a new ed soon, which can be a good or bad thing in the middle of residency.

    i don't know if this helps, but i tried. hopefully someone who rotated at both places will post.

    now here's my question. from what i hear general phones their top 20 and sends out letters to either their top 20 or top 40. so is there no point in ranking them if you haven't heard either way? anyone know details about this. also, what if a program hasn't downloaded your step 2 score from ERAS, does that pretty much mean you're not even on their rank list? I can't imagine that a program would rank you without at least looking at the score, even if they're assuming you passed.
  4. ROLconfusion


    Feb 22, 2008
    Thanks for the replies. I am not too worried about the physicians committing suicide etc. Either way it all sounds a bit gossipy.
    I don't mind Akron and need to be there for personal reasons so I am really just trying to see if there is any compelling reason to rank one ahead of another except for just who I liked more. I was not able to rotate at either one.
    Summa seemed more together as far as curriculum but Dr.Beeson seemed kind of either tired and/or depressed when I was there. The residents were nice and the faciliites are really nice. General had a less formal interview day and I think they are hurt by not giving an actual presentation on the program. I walked away scratching my head a bit. However, I really did like the PD and chair and thought everyone seemed, like you said, very laid back and fun.
    One more question: 3 or 4 people who, when I asked what the difference was, made the comment that Summa had more of 'gunner' feel about it and that the residents were more competitive with each other. These people had rotated through there. Icymed, would you say this is true?

    About Generals top 20, I know the PD did say that he calls/writes his top 20. I would still rank them even if you haven't heard because who knows if his top 20 want to be there. I can't remember what he said about filling within his top 20. Also, not sure about the step 2 score not being downloaded. If it was available really late it might be the program stopped downloading. I have heard on these boards that after awhile some programs just stop updating their files. Maybe someone else can comment on that. Thanks!
  5. icymd

    icymd 2+ Year Member

    Feb 24, 2008
    beeson's a nice guy, i wouldn't be put off by the tired/depressed thing. i think the guy's involved in a lot of stuff, got things going on, plus he might just be one of those not outwardly exuberant people. the residents all seem to love him. as far as summa's "gunner feel" i'm gonna say that I would bet it's more so than general. like I said they take a lot of people from their affiliated med school, and while I think it's usually pretty cool people that go into EM, I'm not a big fan of the people from that med school. Generally, I think the maturity level is a bit lacking, mainly because there are a lot of 6 year combined degree people who graduate from there (this means only two years of undergrad and then 4 years of med school). This lack of maturity might contribute to some of the snarky/sneaky behavior that goes on. I'm not sure how much of it follows the grads who go into EM and specifically the program at SUMMA. but remember the whole grain of salt thing. EM people usually cool and so your intern class could be. if i hear/think of anything else I'll try and post before ROL Day.
  6. Greenbbs

    Greenbbs 10+ Year Member

    Sep 21, 2007
    Glorious upstate NY
    when i was a med student, i rotated at both hospitals, but ended up in an osteopathic program.

    Summa was nice. High acuity stuff, but like others have said, definately the gunner type feel. People didn't exactly care about patient care, but rather patient numbers and stuff. Some of the people there can be a bit standoffish, but you get that anywhere.

    General was more my type of hospital, much more laid back. It is true that 2 attendings have committed suicide in the past 3 years or so, and one is in a turkish prison for killing his wife. They see a lot of high acuity stuff too, but you tend to not be as competitive as at summa. The attendings tend to be a bit more friendly as well.

    You're not going to lose by going to one over the other. You do your same peds months at Childrens, and both go to Baltimore for Shock Trauma and Metro for LifeFlight/Trauma too.

    I'm happy where I'm at, but wouldn't have complained with either if I didn't go osteopathic.
  7. Deuce Doc

    Deuce Doc Communityist 5+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2011
    Akron General

    .Residents: The program is increasing from 8 to 11 residents for this summer's intern class. The folks that I met at the dinner were great. There were only two of them, but only about four applicants made the dinner, but conversation was great and I found the residents very open and friendly. My opinion didn't change at all with the ones that I met on interview day. They were very enthusiastic about their program director, the residency, and all the benefits that they have from the hospital.
    .Lifestyle/City: Akron is a reasonable size city that benefits a lot from its proximity to Cleveland. The residents seem happy with the amount of stuff to do locally. The PD has just decreased the number of clinical shifts intern year to 16 in order to allow for 3 dedicated academic shifts for independent study, ultrasound practice, research, etc. Second and third year are 18 and 16 ten hour shifts respectively. Resident wellness is definitely emphasized. .
    Curriculum: The PD has only been running the program for a few years, but he has started making several new innovative changes, some of which are definitely outside the box like the academic shifts mentioned above. He also moved their ortho rotation into the ED so that the residents weren't wasting time on the floor rounding on an unpopular service. They have also recently started doing shifts in the outlying freestanding EDs for a more community-type experience. The PD brings his experience as an ABEM examiner to the extensive program in place for testing and evaluating residents including monthly oral and written exams. Trauma airways are owned by the ED and procedures are shared with surgery. There are extensive elective/extracurricular opportunities including tactical medicine, and assignment to an EMS squad to assist with their training.

    Facilities: The med center sees 68K patients, and the peds hospital is a free-standing facility 2 blocks away. They just got a large cash infusion to bring their sim center up to the latest and greatest standards. The PD is sim director for the institution as well.

    Interview Day: The most unusual thing about the interview day was that our first presentation was from human resources, detailing all the benefits of residency at Akron General--pretty darned impressive. The residents went on and on about the free deliveries of their children and matching retirement funds and other goodies. Sounded like they are very well taken care of. Otherwise, we had a great overview by the PD and APD who really gave the impression that they work hard to make the residency the best it can be. I was thoroughly impressed with this commitment and their willingness to make painful changes (like pulling the ED residents from the ortho service). The faculty interviews were all very collegial. This was one place where I definitely felt that they were recruiting me, rather than me proving myself. .
    Summary: This program is one of the oldest in the country and has all the makings of a great residency in my mind. They have enough acuity and volume and an incredibly dedicated PD to make the experience worthwhile, and they seem to have done well in collecting a group of residents that I would look forward to being around for 3 years. The robust benefits package is a nice bonus too. The only thing that gave me pause at all is the location..
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  8. Hypomanics

    Hypomanics 5+ Year Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    I just want to 2nd this whole post. I agree with everything said. This is exactly the same impression I got, but much better than I could have said it.
  9. imddr16


    Apr 26, 2016
    Long time lurker, posting on alternate account in order to remain anonymous. These threads greatly helped me and as such I am paying it forward. Good luck for future medical students. I won't go into the curriculum details or specifics since those are mostly readily available on their websites, but rather I made a long pro/con detail list along my interview trail and I will highlight my thoughts from that list.

    Pro: Was actually pleasantly surprised about this program, great people, fun, nice hospital, super affordable, very flexible (had to reschedule twice), family friendly, great resources for a community program, ties to CCF now which may be good in the future for reputation, family friendly

    Con: Akron, I am from PA I felt like this was not a plus to the program, got the feeling that they love people that rotated there (they asked several times about who rotated here), not a big name in EM but certainly reputable in the midwest, lack of research

    Overall impressions
    Gut feeling:6/10
    Facilities/resources: 8/10
    Location: 5/10
    Didactics: can't comment
    Prestige: 5/10
    Research: 3/10
    Shift/hours/wellness: 6/10

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