Training that prepares doctors to provide high-quality care in a variety of settings has made Christiana Care a destination of choice for residents. With more than 100 years of experience in post-graduate medical education, Christiana Care is a top-rated independent academic medical center.
“For the second year in a row, our health system achieved a 100 percent first-round match result from the National Resident Matching Program,” said Neil Jasani, M.D., vice president, Academic Affairs. The matching program aligns the preferences of medical school graduates with the preferences of residency program directors to fill training positions throughout the U.S.
“This is a place where residents can dive in and start learning right away.”
“We get people from the best medical schools coming to us, where they have the opportunity to both train and do research,” said Anthony Sciscione, D.O., director of the OB-GYN residency program. “We have approximately 7,000 deliveries a year and a very diverse patient population, including the highest acuity patients.”
In Family Medicine, residents also gain experience caring for a diverse population, seeing patients in both suburban and urban settings, said Lisa Maxwell, M.D., who directs the Family Medicine program. And residents can tailor their education in order to get extra training in their areas of special interest.
“We recently had a resident who received a lot of extra training in obstetrics and is now working at a clinic in rural Colorado doing primary care and obstetrics,” Dr. Maxwell said. “One of our residents had a special interest in HIV, and she is now working with those patients, dividing her time between Christiana Care and Westside Health.”
Tiffany Eckert, M.D., a third-year Family Medicine resident, is interested in urgent care and global health. The Family Medicine program helped to smooth the way for her to spend time in Guatemala, caring for patients in a teaching clinic.
“Christiana Care has an innovative program that is set up in mini-blocks instead of traditional blocks,” Dr. Eckert says. “Because I have had so much hands-on training, I feel I am well prepared to practice medicine.”
In all, there are 11 allopathic and two osteopathic residency programs at Christiana Care, plus residencies in oral and maxillofacial surgery, dentistry, podiatry, pharmacy and pastoral care.
In 2007, the American Board of Emergency Medicine and the American Board of Family Medicine approved a dual certification program combining family medicine and emergency medicine residencies at Christiana Care. The program offers two residency spots each year. The first resident to complete the program graduated in 2012.
“This was the first allopathic program of its kind in the country and a true testament to the collaborative culture of Christiana Care,” Dr. Maxwell said.
For Dr. Vrunda Patel, choosing an institution with quality residencies in many specialties was a priority. Her husband, Vishal Patel, M.D., is a resident in Christiana Care’s medicine-pediatrics program.
“We were planning on going through the couples match,” she said. “My husband was the first to visit here, and he was very impressed by the amount of experience the residents have.”
The incoming OB-GYN residents got an immediate sense of what it is like to train in a high-volume hospital, with seven scheduled C-sections on their very first day.
“This is a place where residents can dive in and start learning right away,” she said.
The high level of experience and training at Christiana Care show their value when they create good outcomes for patients. For example, for more than three years, Dr. Vrunda Patel practiced managing complicated deliveries in Christiana Care’s Virtual Education and Simulation Training Center, where doctors train in a simulated hospital environment using high-tech robotic mannequins. When a baby at Christiana Hospital presented with shoulder dystocia — a rare and dangerous complication — in July, Dr. Patel was ready.
“Everyone was very calm and we had a great outcome because we had practiced it so many times,” she said.