Author(s): Patwardhan A, Henrickson M, Laskosz L, Duyenhong S, Spencer CH
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Pediatric Rheumatology (PR) training in the US has existed since the 1970's. In the early 1990's, the training was formalized into a three year training program by the American College of Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and American Board of Pediatrics (ABP). Programs have been evaluated every 5 years by the ACGME to remain credentialed and graduates had to pass a written exam to be certified. There has been no report yet that details not just what training fellows should receive in the 32 US PR training programs but what training the trainees are actually receiving. METHODS: After a literature search, a survey was constructed by the authors, then reviewed and revised with the help members of the Executive Committee of the Rheumatology Section of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) using the Delphi technique. IRB approval was obtained from the AAP and Nationwide Children's Hospital. The list of fellows was obtained from the ABP and the survey sent out to 81 current fellows or fellows just having finished. One repeat e-mail was sent out. RESULTS: Forty-seven fellows returned the survey by e-mail (58\%) with the majority being 3rd year fellows or fellows who had completed their training. The demographics were as expected with females > males and Caucasians> > non-Caucasians. Training appeared quite appropriate in the number of ½ day continuity clinics per week (1-2, 71\%), number of patients per clinic (4-5, 60\%), inpatient exposure (2-4 inpatients per week, 40\%; 5 or greater, 33\%), and weekday/weekend call. Fellows attended more didactic activities than required, had ample time for research (54\% 21-60/hours per week), and had multiple teaching opportunities. Seventy-seven percent of the trainees presented abstracts at national meetings, 41\% had publication. Disease exposure was excellent and joint injection experience sufficient. CONCLUSIONS: Most US PR training programs as a whole provide an appropriate training by current ACGME, American College of Rheumatology (ACR), and ABP standards in: 1) number of continuity clinics; 2) sufficient on-call activities for weekday nights and weekends; 3) joint interdisciplinary conferences; 4) electives 5) didactic activities; 6) scholarly activities; and 7) exposure to diverse rheumatology diseases. Areas of concern were uniformity & standardization of training, need for a customized PR training curriculum, more mentorship, free electives, training in musculoskeletal ultrasound, need for a hands-on OSCE certification exam and more exposure to ACGME competencies.
This article was published in Pediatr Rheumatol Online J
and referenced in Autism-Open Access