Study: Basic Surgical Skills Testing Lacking in Residency Programs

Researchers suggest that, although implementation of an evaluation process of medical residents' surgical skills is difficult, any available resources should be directed toward such an evaluation process, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

Interviews were conducted with 23 invited residency program directors. Results showed only four programs perform formal basic surgical skills evaluation with mandatory remediation. No program director has ever prevented residents with demonstrable poor basic surgical skills from going to the operating room or used poor basic surgical skills as a reason to deny promotion.

Additionally, only one program required evidence of satisfactory central line placement skills for credentialing. Obstacles to implementing an evaluation of basic surgical skills included lack of time, resources and validated tests. Sixteen program directors saw some value in evaluation, but only 41 percent viewed basic surgical skills evaluation as important for residents.

Read the study about evaluation of surgical residents' surgical skills.

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