Curriculum


Rotations

Our five-year program begins with the PGY-1 year in the Yale-New Haven Hospital System in a diversified experience of monthly rotations that includes general surgery and trauma, vascular surgery, plastic surgery, surgical intensive care unit, emergency room and six months on orthopaedics. The content of the PGY-1 year is determined by the orthopaedic program directors with the general surgery department and is compliant with ACGME requirements. PGY-1 residents have the opportunity even when off-service to attend many of the educational lectures and other activities.

Intern Year
Orthopaedic Surgery
Pediatric Orthopedics8 weeks
Orthopedic Surgery Night Float8 weeks
Orthopedic Surgery Day Float8 weeks
General Surgery
Trauma & Emergency General Surgery4 weeks
VA Vascular Surgery4 weeks
Acute Care Surgery4 weeks
Surgical Intensive Care Unit4 weeks
Emergency Room4 weeks
Plastics & Reconstructive Surgery4 weeks

*4 weeks of vacation are integrated into the year.

During the second year, residents rotate exclusively through orthopaedic services. These include orthopaedic trauma; pediatric orthopaedics; combined shoulder, elbow, sports and hand services designed to give exposure to popular subspecialties early in the program while also building key general orthopedic foundation. Residents also rotate at the nearby West Haven Veterans Administration Medical Center with a broad scope of surgical and clinic care is provided to veterans including joints, hand surgery, foot & ankle, and sports.  Residents also continue their consult experience fielding daytime consults 1-2 days per week.

Year 2
Hand
Shoulder, Elbow and Sports
Pediatric Orthopedics
VA Orthopedics
Orthopedic Trauma

This year's experience includes rotations on the trauma, spine, joints, foot & ankle and oncology services.  This year is the highest overnight call volume with in-house call approximately every 3-4 nights. This year also includes opportunity for laboratory research, with one block consisting of two to three days per week involved in clinical activities and the remainder free to develop research projects. At Hospital of St. Raphael’s residents participate in elective joints cases, hip fractures, and other elective cases as the schedule allows. A mix of university and private attendings are available to work with at St. Raphael’s. By the end of this year, residents are well-prepared to begin fellowship applications having given at lest one grand rounds talk and had exposure to all of the orthopedic specialties.

Year 3
Foot & Ankle
Spine
Trauma
St Raphael’s - Joints 
Lab and Oncology

This resident serves as the chief of his or her service on the sports, hand, VA and spine rotations coordinating coverage of cases and has call responsibilities for staffing consults and cases. There is a protected research rotation with one day per week of clinical duties. The Veterans Administration Medical Center rotation is also a chief resident rotation with a wide variety of adult reconstruction surgical cases, sports cases, foot and ankle, and hand and upper extremity problems seen in both OR and clinic setting.

Year 4
Spine
Hand
Shoulder, Elbow, Sports
VA
Lab

In the final year of training, PGY-5 serves as chief resident on all services and has responsibilities for development and execution of educational curriculum, invited grand rounds speakers, organizing monthly journal clubs, and coordinating the book club. The chiefs split these administrative duties and also meet regularly with Program Directors and Department Chair to continue to provide feedback and development to the structure of the program. Chiefs are expected to have the skills to be able to perform most cases independently and have responsibility of caring for a list of consults and primary patients in the hospital. They are on home call every 2-3 nights and are responsible for the management of consults and operative cases. The lab block has no clinical responsibility and allows chiefs to focus on completion of the disputation research project and board preparation. 

Year 5
Pediatric Orthopedics
Trauma 
Oncology
St Raphael’s - Joints
Lab

2nd Through 5th Year Residents

For 2nd through 5th year residents, the rotations are composed of five blocks per year (10-11 weeks per rotation) evenly divided so that each resident in each year rotates through the same services and has an equivalent experience. There is a dedicated lab block in each of the PGY-3 through PGY-5 years with limited clinical responsibilities, which allows ample time for research. Below is a list of some of the best aspects of residency at Yale:

  • You never have to leave New Haven for your rotations – Rotations including Pediatric Orthopaedics and Orthopaedic Trauma occur at Yale New Haven Hospital which has an attached Pediatric and Oncology center, as well as the Hospital of St. Raphael’s which is a mere few blocks away and which houses many outpatient and elective surgeries
  • Busy trauma experience yet not overwhelming and equal access to specialty services
  • Education given by Attendings – which include world renowned lecturers
  • Monthly journal clubs required by ACGME usually held at local restaurants in casual environment with attending participation
  • The Dr. Gary Friedlander Book Club, a bi-monthly gathering at the home of our former chairman to discuss life outside of work in a relaxing environment that also helps to broaden the literary horizons
  • Spring Anatomy course
  • One yearly conference sponsored by department for PGY2-5, as well as funding for conferences at which you present during the year
  • There is also a separate Educational Fund provided annual to reimburse educational expenditures
  • Competitive salaries that more than compensate for the cost of living in New Haven
  • Sports coverage of HS football, Annual CT Open Tennis Tournament and starting this year opportunities arising for Yale Varsity sports
  • The New Haven locale offers the flavor of a mixed urban/suburban population, provides nearly every style of living arrangement as well as easy access to New York and Boston with an abundance of diverse activities to satisfy all interests
  • Excellent history of fellowship matches at top programs around the country
  • With an Orthopaedic Residency at Yale comes the reputation and commitment to producing quality residents prepared to be leaders in the field of Orthopedics

Didactics

Core Curriculum: Monday through Wednesday - 6:30 to 7:30 A.M.

This comprehensive two-year curriculum serves as the cornerstone of our residency’s didactic education. It is composed of lectures and conferences that review all basic and clinical science topics in orthopaedic surgery. These are given primarily by attendings, with a resident assigned to prepare questions to accompany each lecture. Every other Wednesday is Bone Board. This is weekly lecture is delivered by the current Trauma Chief and supplemented by the attending trauma surgeons. This conference is a very interactive and educational presentation with a focus on fracture assessment, management and follow-up care. All lectures are broadcast online so residents not on the main campus (e.g. VA and HSR) may participate in the lecture.

Grand Rounds - Resident Lecture: Friday - 7 to 8 A.M. - Grand Rounds: Friday 8 - 9 A.M.

These lectures are presented by Yale faculty or more commonly, world-renowned visiting professors. In the hour preceding the formal Grand Rounds lecture, more informal lectures are given to residents usually on a topic of their choosing. It presents an opportunity for residents to interact more closely with the speaker and ask questions in a more personal setting. The formal Grand Rounds is welcome to all members of the Orthopedic community and has attracted well-known speakers from all over the country. Each resident also presents grand rounds twice during their residency. Topics can be any of their choosing, their own research or an interesting topic or clinical question.

Service-Specific Conferences

Each rotation has its own weekly, service-specific curriculum that typically involves a pre-op and post-op assessment or scheduled journal or textbook readings and discussions. This takes place Thursday mornings, and at other various times during the week.

Anatomy Course

From March to May, each Friday, members of the faculty direct a two-year rotating schedule of upper extremity, cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine, and lower extremity anatomy with the use of cadaveric dissections and weekly self-assessment quizzes. Prosections are prepared by two selected members of the housestaff in advance of the weekly conference. A final written and practical examination is given at the conclusion of the course. The anatomy labs is otherwise available to the residents as needed throughout the year.

Journal Club 

This is a monthly conference usually held at a local restaurant where residents and faculty gather to review a set of selected articles. This is an ACGME requirement but done in an informative and low-key setting with excellent faculty participation.

Residents benefit from all of the educational opportunities at Yale University, most notably the world-renowned Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library, which houses an incredible historical library and museum in addition to its vast array of resources and study spaces.

All residents are provided with a yearly educational fund, which they can use to purchase anything to help further their orthopaedic training. Typical purchases include textbooks, equipment (loupes, lead aprons, etc.), or courses. In addition to this fund, the department will support each resident with the funding needed to attend 1 weeks’ worth of educational conferences (i.e. AO Basic) each year. Also, if a resident is presenting at a particular conference, they are again provided with the funding needed to participate. 

Residents are provided with the AAOS Comprehensive Orthopaedic Review during their intern year. They also benefit from the generosity of the community orthopaedists who provide the AO Principles of Fracture Management as well as Schatzker and Tile’s The Rationale of Operative Fracture Care during their residency training. 

Finally, during the PGY-5 year, residents attend the Boston Pathology Course and the Maine Orthopaedic Surgery Board Review Course.