Posts Tagged ‘#ICRE2019’

Perspective from two Resident Survival Stories  Panelists

Resident Survival Stories

From left to right: Drs. Justin Jek-Kahn Koh, Elizabeth Hendren, Damon Dagnone and Adelle Roberta Atkinson.

The current learning environment for residents can be stressful, even if you are able bodied and experience no significant hardship.

On top of that, we know that virtually all physicians will experience significant life stressors during training or in their early career, and about 15-30% of residents will go through this in any given year (Hu, 2012)1.

The impact of illness and personal crisis can have profound effects on physician well-being, burn out and eventual practice patterns. This may in part explain why by the end of residency training, residents experience higher levels of psychological distress than the overall population. Even though so many residents experience personal crisis in some shape or another during residency (whether through personal health issues, mental health or through grief and loss), we rarely talk about it. This is what Resident Survival Stories is all about. It is the start of a conversation, an opportunity to acknowledge what so many will experience, done through the use of narrative.

As people who have done it, we know that applying to the Resident Survival Stories panel can be a lesson in vulnerability. It is not just the disclosure of your personal narrative that makes you feel this way, but also the thought that your experience may not be enough. However, with vulnerability comes courage and strength. The process of reflecting on the darker moments you have experienced in your medical career is inherently thought provoking and rewarding.

Your story will be a catalyst for cultural change. Program directors and administrators are in the room and you can share what has helped and hindered your journey. The lessons you have learnt in overcoming adversity can help others avoid the same mistakes that you did.
Survival should not be the main goal of residency. But we know that it is a necessary step towards thriving.

Click here to submit your survival story. The deadline is May 20, 2019.

1. Hu, Y.-Y. Physicians’ Needs in Coping With Emotional Stressors. Arch Surg 147, 212–6 (2012).

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New Video Contest

#IAmResidencyEducation : A World-Wide Celebration of Diversity in Residency Education

Video contest banner _ engAre you a resident/trainee, medical educator or healthcare professional? Don’t miss this unique chance to attend the 2020 International Conference on Residency Education (ICRE), in Vancouver, Canada.

ICRE is the world’s largest conference devoted exclusively to advancing residency education. Each year, ICRE brings together more than 1,500 clinical educators and physicians from around the world to share ideas, challenges, innovations, and advance training.

To highlight this year’s theme, Diversity in Residency Education: Training in a World of Differences, ICRE has launched a video contest to celebrate diversity in residency education in all its forms.

To be eligible, you are required to submit a short video (15 seconds or less) of yourself in which you:

  • state your name, your profession and the name of your country in English or French;
  • end your video with the contest’s hashtag: “I Am Residency Education” in a language of your choice.

To submit your video, include the contest’s hashtags: #IAmResidencyEducation and #ICRE2019 in your post and share it on your social media account (Twitter or Instagram).

Prize value
The winner will earn one (1) complimentary registration to ICRE 2020. The conference will be held September 24-26 in Vancouver, Canada.

This contest is open till August 23, 2019.

Download the complete set of contest rules and guidelines here.

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Resident Survival Stories

Life and residency can, at times, be a real struggle

Here is Dr. Simon Fleming’s Resident Survival Story


Dr. Simon Fleming

I don’t know about you, but I quite like my job. I like fixing people, I like talking (a lot), I like working with tools and my hands (yes, I am an orthopaedic resident/trainee), I like training and teaching, and generally I like the world of healthcare.

However, there are also bits of my job that I don’t like. From the mundane such as, chasing assessments and filling out forms, to the traumatic and awful things that keep you awake at night, or pop into your brain while you’re randomly watching a film.


Sometimes, it’s nothing to do with the job itself. It’s just that the job is, in and of itself, traumatic. Death, loss, grieving, difficult decisions and mistakes (not just the making of mistakes, which I do a lot of, but the consequences and having to admit them and, and, and…). On top of the job, life happens: friends argue, relationship struggles, personal health deteriorates, loved ones get sick or die and, sometimes, the universe just decides to chuck it all at you at once.

And yet, we are still here. We cope, we show grit and we keep putting one foot in front of the other. I know why I am still here. How I coped. Who I had to thank and who I will never be able to thank enough (won’t stop me from trying though). Sure, most of the time, I personally store my trauma memories ‘neatly’, away in boxes, so they don’t “pop out”. But I also recognise that sometimes, both for me and for others, it’s important to share. To show that I was vulnerable, or hurting or struggling and how I got through it. Sometimes, to show how I’m not quite through it yet.

Residents and attendings (we were all residents once) – there are still people out there, in our community, who feel helpless, incompetent, or controlled by their fear. If you have a story you want to share, in a safe and supportive environment, whether it’s to help yourself, to help others or just because you want to be heard, please, submit your story to icre@royalcollege.ca

Deadline for submissions is May 20, 2019.

Click here to access the submission site.


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