General Thoughts

  1. You are the member of a TEAM. There is no “I” in “team”. Any positive contribution you make, helps the team to run more smoothly.
  2. Always be PUNCTUAL. If you notice that your colleague is late for pre-rounds or rounds, give him/her a call ASAP.
  3. Always be HONEST. If you don’t know something, say so. Don’t make up information and never alter a medical record.
  4. Always treat others with RESPECT. Patients, family members, nurses, colleagues, and housekeeping are all deserving of your utmost respect.
  5. Keep those above you informed. Do not hold on to information, no matter how trivial you perceive it to be.
  6. Sign, date and time everything – notes, orders, addendums, etc.
  7. Pursue feedback from all members of the team - including attendings.
  8. Pick our brains. If you don’t feel that we’re teaching you enough, let us know. On the flip side, we don’t believe in keeping you in the hospital late on principle alone, especially if there’s nothing critical happening with the service.
  9. Teaching is a primary goal on this rotation. Take initiative and teach your team members, including the residents. If you have an interesting patient, look up an article on the subject and present it to the team. Gather articles in peer-reviewed journals that address a specific question we need answered. Some examples of appropriate sources are The Journal of the American College of Surgeons, Archives of Surgery, Annals of Surgery, Surgical Clinics of North America, etc.
  10. Wear appropriate dress clothes for all conferences and clinics. Wear your white coats over your scrubs when outside of the OR.
  11. You may be asked to see new consults from time to time. This will give you the opportunity to be first on the scene. Read through the chart and gather as much vital information as possible, formulate a tentative plan, and then call the Senior or Chief resident. The patient will then be interviewed and examined with you.
  12. Consider all requests generated by the AI as coming directly from the top. If you feel these requests are unreasonable, let us know. As in all of medicine, there is a hierarchy on the surgical service. Questions should first be directed at the AI, then the intern, then the senior resident. You can seek out advice or information from any member of the surgical team on other general medical or surgical issues.

For any information, questions, comments, or concerns, contact Robert Pakan, Education Programs Administrator: