Huntington Hospital’s surgical residency program is based in a tertiary care community hospital, with a diverse curriculum that emphasizes clinical excellence with exposure to research and an individualized resident experience. At an early level, house staff interact directly with surgical attending staff, many of whom have clinical faculty appointments at Keck School of Medicine. More than ten thousand operations are performed annually at Huntington Hospital.
The residents perform a majority of the procedures on the teaching service. Huntington Hospital is a Level II Trauma Center for the County of Los Angeles. The house staff manage all trauma service patients from admission in the emergency room, throughout hospitalization and into the outpatient clinic. Approximately seven hundred major trauma patients are seen per year.
The general surgery residency program is organized under the direction of Steven G. Katz, MD, program director. The program is approved for a total of fourteen residents, including ten categorical residents. In the Match, we accept three preliminary PGY-1 residents and two categorical PGY-1 residents. After the Match we begin interviewing for our one PGY-2 preliminary position.
All services are specifically designed to fulfill training in the areas of primary responsibility as defined by the American Board of Surgery. In addition, there is significant experience in other areas deemed important by the Board. The ultimate goal is to provide broad clinical experience with additional emphasis on didactic learning and research opportunities.
First Year (PGY-1) Intern
In the first year of training, each resident spends approximately four months on general surgery and two months on the vascular surgical service. Additional rotations include pediatric surgery, plastic surgery and gynecological surgery, and trauma.
Second through Fourth Years (PGY-2, PGY-3, PGY-4)
The second through fourth years have an emphasis on the principal components of surgery. Vascular surgery is a busy service at Huntington, and residents rotate through this service every year. During the second and third years, the residents spend seven months away from Huntington Hospital with rotations at affiliate institutions in liver transplantation, pediatric surgery, burn surgery and surgical endoscopy.
Fifth Year (PGY-5 Chief)
The fifth year senior residents assume the title of chief surgical resident. The entire year is spent performing index operative cases, and managing selected patients from the various surgical services. This unique operative experience affords the chief resident the opportunity to tailor the operative experience to his/her career objective. The heavy volume of operative cases at Huntington Hospital allows the chief resident to be involved with the operative treatment of patients on many services, while maintaining pre-operative and postoperative responsibility. The chief resident takes trauma call as a senior surgeon in the hospital one-two times per week, has provisional attending staff privileges, and can admit patients under the direction of the attending staff. He/she works closely with the program director to supervise, evaluate and teach junior residents and students. Administrative duties include preparation of on-call schedule, daily rounds, and coordination of conferences.
The attending surgical staff permits residents to assume responsibility and perform technical procedures commensurate with their experience, competence, respect and mutual trust. In general, this increases yearly with added experience, judgment and ability.
Emergency and On-Call Duties
Each resident is on-call every three to five days. On those days, he/she is responsible for consultations in the emergency room, trauma coverage, and calls from the ICU/floor. The patients seen by the on-call resident are reported to an appropriate surgical staff surgeon with diagnostic and treatment recommendations. The ultimate responsibility is with the attending surgeon. The chief residents have authority for all house patients in consultation with the attending physician. Residents have the cooperation and advice of the full-time emergency room physicians, as well as the attending staff physicians on-call for each specialty.
Research Paper Presentation
Each year all the residents, with the exception of the Chief Resident, present a research project. This formal event is organized by the coordinator and a distinguished judge is invited by Dr. James Recabaren who facilitates the projects. Dr. Katz helps match attendants with residents to insure a prosperous outcome. Each year the event attracts many attendees and results in 3-5 publications per year. Since 2000 we have had 33 publications in various journals such as American Journal of Surgery, The American Surgeon, Archives of Surgery, Annals of Vascular Surgery, Journal of Vascular Surgery, and The Surgical Clinics of North America. Numerous papers have been presented at local and national conferences and we continue to strive for continued excellence with the help of our dedicated teaching faculty, residents, program director, program coordinator, and hospital administration.
Surgery Skills Lab
Our new Surgery Skills Lab is entering into its first year. Located on the Huntington Hospital Campus, our Skills Lab will be directed by Dr. David Martin who graduated from our program as a chief resident in June 2000. He has been an active part of our teaching faculty and is currently a laparoscopic surgeon practicing in Pasadena. More information is forthcoming as the curriculum is currently being processed. Each week PGY group levels will rotate through the supervised Skills Lab.
All of the core general surgical experience is provided at Huntington Hospital, which is the parent institution. Los Angeles County + University of Southern California Medical Center and University Hospital are Huntington’s major teaching affiliates, along with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.
Rotation Sites for Categorical Residents
- Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center is the teaching facility of the Keck School of Medicine, the Los Angeles County system. The Huntington residents rotate on the burn unit.
- Children’s Hospital Los Angeles is the major children’s hospital in the Los Angeles area and offers a wide clinical experience in complex pediatric surgical problems.
- University Hospital provides residents with experience in surgical endoscopy and transplantation.
Every resident is expected to go to his/her attending surgeon’s office a minimum of one-half day per week to gain experience in pre- and post-hospital care of surgical patients.
Residents are assigned to a general surgery clinic for four hours each week. An attending surgeon and the senior resident supervise these clinics. This service allows the resident to participate in the outpatient work-up of surgical patients, take part in the surgical procedure, as well as render follow-up care and evaluate the results of surgical procedures.
Every year, each resident is required to select and present a research topic. This work is done in conjunction with the attending staff and program director. These papers are presented at the annual resident research competition in May. The research papers are judged by a guest judge, and prizes are awarded. Selected abstracts are submitted to regional and national meetings with an average of two publications per year.
Huntington offers a didactic program for surgical house staff and attending physicians. Except for the resident on-call, all surgical house staff are relieved of assigned responsibilities for one morning per week. There are three hourly sessions scheduled on Thursdays, and include the Surgical Morbidity & Mortality Conference, a Core Lecture presented by selected staff members, and a Board Review Conference that focuses on basic science principles as related to surgery. Medical/Surgical Grand Rounds is devoted to a detailed discussion of a specific topic relevant to both medical and surgical practice. In addition to the Thursday didactic program, the residents meet weekly with the attending staff for management conferences in general, thoracic, vascular surgery and surgical oncology.
General Surgery Conferences
- Surgical Case Presentation & Review
- Trauma M &M Conference
- Trauma Lectures
- Patient Case Conference
- Surgical M & M Conference
- Core Lecture
- Board Review
- Surgery Skills Lab
- Research Conference
- Journal Club
Steven G. Katz, M.D., Program Director
General Surgery Residency Program
Huntington Hospital - Graduate Medical Education
100 W. California Blvd.
Pasadena, CA. 91105