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The University of South Alabama recently welcomed a new class of resident physicians to the graduate medical education programs based at USA Health.
Currently, 248 residents and fellows are training with USA Health. Of these, 72 began their first year of residency and seven began their fellowships at USA this summer. The skills learned during the first year of training vary by their chosen specialty and build on the foundation given to students during their years in medical school.
“As these new housestaff enter this exciting phase in their training, they are eager but can also feel quite a bit of anxiety,” said Dr. Samuel McQuiston, assistant dean of graduate medical education and associate professor of radiology at the USA College of Medicine. “They have worked for years to become a physician, and now, as a physician, they are assuming significant responsibilities, facing long hours, and acquiring advanced skills. It can seem overwhelming to them, but the residency and fellowship programs have mechanisms in place to make sure that the new housestaff are well supervised, that they are successful in their training, and that their patients will receive optimum care.”
This year, USA recruited its new residents and fellows from 30 different medical schools – with the largest representation coming from USA. After USA, other medical schools with more than one resident are Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine, American University of the Caribbean, Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine, St. George's University, Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Saba University School of Medicine, University of Mississippi, and University of Texas Southwestern.
Dr. Kyle Cox, who earned his medical degree from the University of Central Florida, is a first-year orthopaedic surgery resident physician with USA Health. “USA Medical Center has one of the highest volume trauma centers in the region, which provides lots of opportunity for surgeons-in-training to learn how to operate,” Dr. Cox said. “Coupled with outstanding attending-physician educators and an enthusiastic group of residents, USA is the perfect place to train to be an orthopedic surgeon.”
Dr. Sara R. Avalos Hernandez, a first-year resident physician in the pathology department at USA, earned her medical degree from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Honduras. She said she is looking forward to an enriching learning experience from faculty and residents, so she can become a well-rounded pathologist and researcher in academic medicine.
“I am enjoying my time at USA,” Dr. Avalos Hernandez said. “I’m really impressed with the structure of the pathology curriculum, the willingness of the faculty to teach, and all the support provided by everybody in the team.”
With a long history of training physicians, USA Health provides training in 18 fully ACGME-accredited residency and fellowship programs. Residents and fellows in USA’s training programs are integrated into USA Health with the majority of their training centered at USA Medical Center, USA Children’s & Women’s Hospital, USA Mitchell Cancer Institute, and the USA Physicians Group practices.
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