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Dome - Race against the clock

April 2012

Race against the clock

Date: April 11, 2012

New Hopkins residency program established in record time at All Children’s Hospital.

Raquel Hernandez and Chad Brands had to hit the ground running to put in place a new residency program in time for accreditation.
Raquel Hernandez and Chad Brands had to hit the ground running to put in place a new residency program in time for accreditation.

Chad Brands and Raquel Hernandez didn’t have much time to put together a new pediatric residency program before the body that accredits all graduate medical training came to look at what they had done. 

The new director and associate director of medical education for All Children’s Hospital arrived in St. Petersburg in early December and immediately began preparing for a February site visit by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the body responsible for the accreditation of post-M.D. medical training programs in the United States.

They met with medical and surgical program leaders, seeking input as they worked to design a residency program that could provide a new model for training future pediatricians at All Children’s. They delved into the educational opportunities at the 259-bed hospital while continuing to shape the new program’s priorities with school of medicine pediatric faculty members, including Julia McMillan, director of the pediatric residency program and associate dean for graduate medical education; Janet Serwint, pediatric primary care specialist; Jonathan Ellen, interim president of All Children’s; and many others.

The intensive preparation was evident when an ACGME site visitor came to campus on February 27 to spend the day with program leaders and physicians and evaluate both inpatient and outpatient settings.

The site visit went very well, Ellen notes. “The future faculty did a stellar job in spotlighting the program’s strengths and opportunities for comprehensive and innovative training. We look forward to receiving a full report this summer.”

The development of a new residency program for pediatricians was a key element of All Children’s interest in joining Johns Hopkins Medicine, as the hospital sought to enhance the educational and research aspects of its mission to complement its robust clinical programs.

The goal is to recruit the highest caliber of students, who can become future innovators and leaders in the field of pediatrics. The first class of 12 residents is expected to enter the program in July 2014.

“There is a great deal of excitement about the many opportunities involved in building an innovative new pediatric residency program,” notes Brands. “Colleagues at All Children’s Hospital look forward to ongoing collaboration with the faculty at Johns Hopkins as we pursue excellence together in medical education.”

The program will incorporate standard components of residency training, such as progressive responsibility and exposure to multiple pediatric subspecialties. Innovative elements of the curriculum will include a second year focused on elective experiences in the specialties, a competency-based curriculum with measurable outcomes, and novel opportunities for career development woven into the residency program.

In addition, residents will create individualized learning plans that will form the basis for their rotation schedules through the different subspecialty areas and promote each resident’s distinct career goals. The program will emphasize career development through frequent faculty exposure and guidance.

 “Our program,” Ellen says, “will be ideally positioned to give residents the opportunity to understand what factors are critical to maintaining health and preventing subsequent hospitalizations.”

The Medical Education office also plans to offer “intersessions” beginning in 2012 that will give medical students a taste of the diverse academic and research opportunities available at All Children’s Hospital Johns Hopkins Medicine, one of only two freestanding children’s hospitals in Florida and the only pediatric quaternary referral center on Florida’s west coast. It includes a 97-bed NICU, a large cardiology and cardiovascular surgery center, and a hematology-oncology program that is home to Florida’s largest pediatric marrow transplant program.

—Ellen Arky

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