How does Pediatric Residency Compare?

Discussion in 'Pediatrics' started by WnderWmn10, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. WnderWmn10

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    Just wondering how rigorous pediatric residency compares to other residencies (aka call schedule, total hours).. say, for example, family practice.

    thanks
     
  2. TexasRose

    TexasRose Gotta run
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    Well, we all have to adhere to duty hours for starters. Peds is certainly easier on it's residents than surgical specialties. I don't really know about Fam Med. I believe there's more outpatient time with "regular" hours in Family in general, but I don't have stats on that.

    I'm sure other folks can comment on it. :)

    My program has 7-8 call months in intern year which are q4 or q5 and one q6 month. The other months are 8-5ish with a few weekend calls in the EC.
     
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  3. WnderWmn10

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    Thanks TexasRose for your response. Can you tell me what Years 2 and 3 are like?

    Anyone else care to offer input?
     
  4. pedidoc

    pedidoc Junior Member
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    I know at my program intern year was about 8 months of call q 4-5. There were only two months with no call and the other two month you were on about three times a month.

    The second and third years were better, but you were always in the call pool, but it was more like q 5-6. The second and third years though you have PICU months which were brutal. Call meant literally barely enough time to go to the bathroom.

    I did a year of family practice and I can say that comparing the two programs peds was much harder. I hardly ever slept on call, I was on my feet nearly the entire time and I was on call a lot more with a lot sicker patients. I think it has to do w/ the amount of time in ICU (NICU and PICU).

    I know that the surgery residents said that we were right behind them as far as number of hours and call. That's obviously program dependent, but we were there a lot.

    On the upside, my program tried most of the time to follow duty hours rules which really probably saved my marriage. The only time the rules didn't really apply were on PICU months (during which time you were a total jerk for leaving while your patient was coding).
     
  5. J-Rad

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    Agree, some programs are more intense than others. My residency had no call free months except for ED and Peds ED which were, obviously, shift work. Inpatient months (ward [in my intern year], PICU, NICU, Newborn nursery) were q3-4, i.e. Wed/Sat or Thur/Sun (in my last two years ward had a weird version of a night float system so you worked anywhere between, at least, 72-78 hours depending on what shift and in what role you were working). Ideally outpatient was supposed to be 4 calls/mo, but it was not uncommon for it to be 5-6 calls and occasionally, some people got 7-8 calls in an outpatient month. People were in at 0600 on ward and NICU and were supposed to be checking out at 4, but sometimes stuff happens. At our facility Peds was pretty well matched with the worst of the specialties for "grueling-ness" (probably JUST behind OB/GYN and Surgery about in that order). But there are many "friendlier" programs, I know.
     
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  6. BigNavyPedsGuy

    BigNavyPedsGuy Junior Member
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    My program is similar to J-Rad's. However, they are not all like that. At my medical school program (Top 25 program), they have a night float system so the only times you would take overnight call is if their call happens to fall on a weekend or they are in the ICU. Otherwise they only stayed til 7PM. Ward months = 60 hours a week. Pretty cush
     
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  7. oldbearprofessor

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    No one would list pedi as one of the easier residencies. Some of this is due to the volume of patients one typically sees and admits on a night of call. Some of it is due to the fact that you'll do multiple rotations in critical care settings and these are tough months almost anywhere.

    In general 2nd year has fewer inpatient months and 3rd year has relatively few in most programs. These months can be busy though as being a supervisory resident is usually not an easy assignment.

    I'm unconvinced that there is a huge distribution in the "rigorousness" of different pedi programs. Undoubtedly some have more hours than others, but I think the distribution of hours is fairly similar across programs. In other words, don't count on finding an easy pedi residency by interviewing with that in mind.

    However, all of that leads me to ask the real question, which is "How much extra work are you willing to do as a resident, especially as an intern, to become a pediatrician?" When you get down to it, pedi residency has one fairly tough year and 2 others that aren't that bad. Are you willing and able to put in the hours in that year in order to spend the rest of your career being a pediatrician? Is the possibility of doing a fellowship in a pedi specialty worth it? Lots of folks start pedi interested in general pedi and change their minds. And vice-versa.

    I don't believe that pedi residency is so abusive or hard that, for those who want to have a career providing medical care for children it's undoable or unreasonable. But, only you can decide that for yourself.

    Good luck!
     
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  8. BigNavyPedsGuy

    BigNavyPedsGuy Junior Member
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    Gotta agree with Old Bear. Any residency is hard. If you're asking because of curiosity, fine. If you're altering your entire career path becasue of a couple of tough years, then grow a spine.
     
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  9. J-Rad

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    I would also agree that all Peds residencies share a level of rigor just like all residencies. My guess would be that the particular call intensity of BNPG's and my residency is less the norm than for many others. Part of it will be the function of the number of residents in the program (ours being on the smaller side) and other factors. At my program we lost a resident in our second year so this especially affected the call #s for the senior residents on their outpatient services; so unexpected events (pregnancies included) can alter the call intensity at any program, but especially the smaller ones.
     
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