Residents are paired with attending physicians on a 1:1 basis for two-month blocks (note that certain elective or offsite rotations may only be one month, and thus may result in a one month rotation with an attending—however, this is an exception). During this time, residents are responsible for seeing all new patient consultations, follow-up visits, and on-treatment visits, and are also responsible for contouring cases and evaluating radiation plans.
In addition to clinical duties, there are a number of educational didactic sessions that constitute protected time for the residents, during which they are not responsible for clinical coverage. Typically, these take place from 8 to 9 am Monday through Friday. These include:
Radiation Oncology Clinical Didactic Lecture Series
The Clinical Didactic Lecture Series consists of lectures on Monday and Wednesday morning. The lecture series is primarily broken up into two-month blocks focusing on particular disease sites (e.g., breast, GU, head and neck). Smaller topics (e.g., benign ocular diseases and sarcoma) typically are grouped together as paired one-month blocks. Most blocks conclude with a mock oral boards session.
This is a weekly case conference where residents are invited to present cases with exceptional educational value and/or considered interesting. The resident will be responsible for presenting the evaluation, staging, and treatment of the case while pointing out relevant imaging and pathology findings. Finally, sufficient time will be used to conduct a thorough analysis of the radiation treatment plan.
All cases that are starting treatment in the department are reviewed every Monday and Wednesday afternoon. Cases are presented by the resident on the respective service, and the Socratic method is often employed to make teaching points.
Physics and radiobiology lectures are given on Tuesday afternoons in 6 months blocks, alternating throughout the year. Each lecture is led by a faculty member with expertise in that area. The use of review questions from publicly available standardized examinations help consolidate knowledge formation.
Sessions focus on discussion of recently published innovative articles pertaining to clinical radiation oncology, biology, and/or physics. An emphasis is placed on multi-disciplinary care. These are held on a monthly basis on the first Monday of the month from noon to 1pm. All residents and faculty are expected to attend.
Clinical Quality Oversight
Each month residents and faculty discuss patient care issues and safety at quality conferences. Patients who have experienced treatment breaks, ER visits, and/or severe toxicities are discussed with an educational perspective. Residents are also required to complete 1 clinical quality improvement (CQI) project during residency.
Multidisciplinary Tumor Boards
Residents attend multidisciplinary tumor boards relevant to their rotation. The exposure to medical oncology, pathology, surgical oncology, and radiology serves to meet ACGME requirements in these areas.
The Department regularly hosts prominent academicians from institutions across the country for research seminars. Invited faculty members are selected based on their contributions to clinical care and scientific discovery.