Emergency Medicine Residency Program
The USA Health Department of Emergency Medicine started a new residency training program
in emergency medicine at the University of South Alabama. The program received accreditation
from the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and enrolled
the first residency class in July 2019. This is a three-year residency program, enrolling
six residents per year. The program is based entirely within USA Health hospitals.
As a state-certified Level I trauma center and nationally ranked burn center, USA Health University Hospital is an acute care facility serving as the major referral center for southwest Alabama, southeast Mississippi and portions of northwest Florida. With 406 beds, the hospital provides high-quality care in cardiac, orthopaedic, stroke and other emergencies. USA Health University Hospital will be expanding emergency services in summer 2020 with the opening of the new 27,000-square-foot Fanny Meisler Trauma Center. University Hospital is located at 2451 University Hospital Drive, Mobile, AL 36617.
Children's & Women's Hospital
Located at 1700 Center Street, Mobile, AL 36604, USA Health Children’s & Women’s Hospital is the only pediatric emergency department in the region and one of few freestanding hospitals in the Unites States devoted to the needs of women and children. The 152-bed hospital provides highly regarded emergent, surgical, oncological, and acute care to women and children.
Message from the Program Leadership
Welcome to the University of South Alabama Emergency Medicine Residency Program located at USA Health in Mobile, Alabama. This is a new program as of 2019, but it is different from most other new emergency medicine training programs in important ways. First, it is located at one of only two academic health systems in the state, the USA College of Medicine. USA Health has a long history of graduate medical education training programs dating back to the 1970s. Second, the core emergency medicine faculty brings a wealth of experience in graduate medical education and academics. The faculty includes three prior EM residency program directors, two prior fellowship training program directors, and several decades of student and graduate medical education experience.
Third, the USA program is based at an ideal location for emergency medicine training. USA Health includes a busy Level I trauma center, a regional burn unit, a tertiary referral academic medical center, as well as an under-insured county hospital type population. It has a separate pediatric emergency department at USA Health Children’s & Women’s Hospital. That ED is focused on PEM care, but the PED attendings are all academic faculty members in the Department of Emergency Medicine.
Our goal is to graduate highly competent emergency medicine physicians to serve the region. We believe the program has particular strengths in the areas of critical care, trauma care, and pediatric emergency medicine. Although most of our graduates will practice community EM, we believe that scholarship and teaching experiences are important. Therefore, we also expose our EM residents to formal academic activities to provide those skill sets to individual EM residents who may be interested in a future academic career.
Thank you for your interest in our program.
Edward A. Panacek, M.D., M.P.H.
Chair and Interim Program Director
Paul Henning, M.D.
Associate Residency Program Director
Richard Garri, M.D.
Assistant Residency Program Director
The USA Emergency Medicine Residency Program is based at an ideal site for clinical training in emergency medicine. USA Health University Hospital is one of only three Level I trauma centers in the state of Alabama and is the second busiest. It covers the entire southern third of the state, as well as the southern portion of Mississippi and parts of the panhandle of Florida. It is Level I for both adults and pediatric trauma patients. University Hospital also has the only regional burn unit and receives burn referrals from a large geographic region. The emergency department at University Hospital sees a broad spectrum of patients from complex tertiary referral cases through general county hospital patients. It has a very high acuity level, rated in the top 10 percent in the country out of comparison academic medical centers. Over 80 percent of the inpatients at University Hospital are admitted through the emergency department. The ED has a 28 percent admission rate, with a high proportion of those patients going directly to the OR or admitted to an ICU.
The emergency department at USA Health Children’s & Women’s Hospital is a pure pediatric emergency department and sees 35,000-45,000 visits per year. It is the only pediatric emergency department for the entire central Gulf Coast region. Children’s & Women’s Hospital provides the vast majority of the pediatric subspecialty care in the area and has the only local PICU and Level III neonatal ICU. The attendings in the pediatric emergency department are all faculty in the Department of Emergency Medicine. Each of the emergency departments has state-of-the-art bedside ultrasound equipment and advanced airway equipment.
The University of South Alabama College of Medicine is one of only two established allopathic medical schools in the state. USA Health has well-established residency training programs in nearly all the major specialties including the off-service specialties where the EM residents rotate. The DEM includes among its faculty multiple nationally recognized EM academicians as well as medical directors of both Mobile City EMS and Mobile County EMS.
The University of South Alabama has robust simulation facilities including state-of-the-art capabilities for all of the procedures relevant to emergency medicine as well as resuscitation experiences. There are extensive simulation facilities on the University campus and also facilities at each of the hospitals. Extensive use of simulation is an important component of the EM residency educational program.
All of the clinical rotations take place within the USA Health system, primarily at University Hospital and about 25 percent of the time at USA Children’s & Women’s Hospital. A summary of the clinical curriculum is as follows:
EM Orientation: 1 block
UH ED: 4 blocks
Pediatric ED: 1 block
Trauma Surgery: 1 block
OB-GYN: 1 block
Internal Medicine Inpatient Service: 1 block
MICU: 1 block
Neurology Services: 1 block
Anesthesia: 1 block
Emergency Medicine: 8 blocks*
SICU: 1 block
MICU: 1 block
OB-GYN Emergency Center: 1 block
EMS: 1 block
Emergency Medicine: 9 blocks*
PICU: 1 block
EM Administration: 1 block
Electives: 2 blocks**
Note that USA Health uses a 13 block (each of four weeks) schedule in all of its graduate medical education programs. One of those blocks is used for vacation. In emergency medicine that vacation block is split between selected ER blocks to be spread out across the year.
The trauma experiences in the R-2/R-3 years are included in the UH-ED shifts. EM residents respond to all critical trauma activations.
*All of the ER rotations in the second and third years involve shifts at both the University Hospital ER and USA CWH Pediatric ED. In general, approximately 25 percent of the shifts of each of those blocks would be done in the PED.
**Elective months are per approval and generally from a list of established "selectives." The program will emphasize off-site emergency medicine in underserved areas, disasters, wilderness and tactical medicine. A research selective is recommended for those residents interested in original research projects, additional scholarships or an academic career.