UCEP’s Role in the Training of Emergency Medicine Residents in Utah

Susan Stroud, MD

The EM residency program based at the University of Utah has benefitted from a close relationship with UCEP since the enrollment of its first class in 2005. All residents in our program are provided with ACEP, EMRA, and UCEP membership throughout their training. The benefits of membership in these organizations provide our trainees with resources and opportunities that enhance their clinical education and expose them to opportunities to learn and lead through advocacy for our specialty.

The core content of an emergency medicine residency is dedicated to exposure and mastery of the clinical skills necessary to be a competent emergency physician. Membership in UCEP provides the opportunity to gain parallel experiences in understanding the issues facing our patients and all EM physicians in the workplace outside of their training  environment. Understanding the special role that emergency medicine plays in the safety net of our healthcare system, as well as the issues facing our physicians and specialty, is just the beginning.

Our residency has been lucky enough to co-host the annual UCEP Summit as part of our planned weekly education conference and benefited from UCEP’s ability to attract national speakers like Chris Kang, Past President of ACEP, Amal Mattu, Scott Weingart, Jim Dahle, and Corey Slovis to name a few.

Our residents are provided with the unique opportunity to serve as a resident member on the UCEP board if they choose, and can participate in activities designed to address issues and challenges specific to the practice of emergency medicine in Utah. They also can attend the ACEP Leadership and Advocacy Conference in Washington, DC with other UCEP board members to develop these skills and learn about legislative and regulatory issues facing our specialty at the national level.

Through this mentorship and involvement in addressing real world issues and interfacing with legislators representing Utah, many graduates have been empowered to continue this work. Two of our current UCEP resident board members (Ellie Gilbertson and Alex Franke) recently served as councilors representing UCEP at the ACEP Council meeting last month in Philadelphia. Another current Utah resident, Chris Evola, contributed to a UCEP task force formed to improve care coordination for patients in police custody and is engaged in a quality improvement project around this work. Alison Smith, our current UCEP president, is also a graduate of our training program. She was not only a UCEP resident board member but was also elected to the EMRA Board of Directors and served as the national EMRA representative to ACEP during her residency training. Several of our current UCEP board members are also graduates of our program and served as UCEP resident board representatives during their training.

UCEP has provided role models for our trainees and many members have served as personal mentors for the development of effective leadership and advocacy skills. These opportunities have enhanced the careers of many of our trainees and provided passion for continuing to advocate for our specialty and emergency physicians throughout our state and beyond.