Yann Beaulieu, BEng, Louis Guertin, MD, FRCSC, Ariane P Smith, MD, Margeret Henri, MD, FRCSC, FACS. University of Montreal
Objective: While quotas for Canadian surgical residency programs are at their lowest point in ten years, the number of Canadian graduating medical students is at an apogee. This year, only 288 spots in surgical residency programs were available for 2893 students applying to CARMs. Undergraduate medical students individually collect anecdotal information regarding what influences admission to their surgical subspecialties of interest, as scarce literature covers the topic. We thus surveyed surgeons and residents to analyze the relative importance of modifiable factors and innate attributes in the selection of new surgical residents.
Methods: An electronic survey was sent to all surgeons and surgical residents affiliated with the University of Montreal. Participants were asked to specify their surgical subspecialty, their status, their level of experience and whether they were an active member of a residency selection committee. The subjective importance of predefined application elements and candidate qualities was assessed using 5-point Likert-type items.
Results: Of the 510 surgeons and 207 residents to whom the survey was sent, 136 (26.9 %) and 91 (44.0 %) completed the survey. Evaluations of elective rotations and evaluations of core rotations were considered very important by 79.7 % and 62.9 % of responders respectively. Regarding letters of recommendation, the content was rated very important (58.8 %) more often than the notoriety of the author (25.6 %). Networking with key surgeons was considered the least important element to prioritize with 23 % of negative assessments. With regards to the fundamental qualities of surgical candidates, the extremes were “clinical judgement” with 90.1 % and “innate technical ability” with 26.4 % of responders rating them very important. No significant differences in responses were observed between staffs and residents, between members and non-members of selection committees, between different levels of surgical experience and between surgical subspecialties.
Conclusion: Clinical judgement and performance in core and elective rotations along with strong personalized letters of recommendation should be prioritized by medical students aiming for a surgical career.
Presented at the SAGES 2017 Annual Meeting in Houston, TX.
Abstract ID: 87528
Program Number: P297
Presentation Session: iPoster Session (Non CME)
Presentation Type: Poster