Yale Pediatrics is always interested in finding a new and better way to achieve education and clinical excellence. Our motto is that there is “no ceiling on success” in these arenas, and we try hard to respond to feedback from a variety of sources to make improvements in the lives of our residents and patients. Some examples of our innovate strategies include:
Community and Tertiary Care
Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital is a mid-sized hospital with a total of 212 beds. We serve as both the community hospital for the New Haven area, as well as a major referral center for patients from NY, CT, RI, and MA. While working here residents engage with the entire care spectrum of pediatrics, from our busy outpatient primary care center (over 40,000 visits annually), to our Bone Marrow Transplant and Pediatric Cardiac ICU services. There is no patient population within the Children’s Hospital which does not have resident coverage.
We rotate at Bridgeport Hospital, a community hospital about 20 miles south of New Haven, where residents serve as the pediatrics resource in-house by staffing the wards, NICU, ED emergencies, and newborn nursery.
Residents also serve as primary care providers for many of the children of the New Haven community in our primary care center. This busy clinic sees over 40,000 visits annually and houses a variety of innovate approaches including group well child care (with a Spanish Immersive clinic in this model called YChiC). In October of 2020 we are moving to a new clinical site, also joining forces with a well-established Federally Qualified Heath Center to consolidate our efforts in service of the New Haven community.
X + Y Scheduling
Starting in 2015, our residency became only the second program in the country to transition to x + y scheduling, removing continuity clinic from inpatient and ICU experiences and instead condensing clinic in regular blocks interspersed throughout the year. This innovative approach resulted in a massive decrease in handoffs and overall improvement in patient continuity in both inpatient and outpatient settings. True to our program character, we solicited resident feedback about the switch from those classes who experienced both systems, and resident experience was also consistently improved in this approach. Residents who are on rotations without inpatient continuity (electives, emergency department, etc) continue to participate in weekly clinic to increase outpatient continuity opportunities.
Academic Half Day
Residents at Yale have protected educational time in the form of an academic half day. On Wednesday mornings all residents on an outpatient clinic block learn using the Yale Pediatric Primary Care Curriculum, with lectures lead by faculty, peers and content experts. On Thursday afternoons, there is an inpatient-focused academic half day in which ward interns and seniors alternate every other week in having protected time to learn. Our inpatient academic half days follow an “illness-script” curriculum with mixed specialty input into common and uncommon pediatric presentations. We often engage in hands-on and interactive learning including simulation, journal-clubs and cased base presentations.
During this unique recruitment season, we make select academic half days available via Zoom for applicants interested in seeing our didactic learning approaches in action.
Distance Learning in the Time of COVID
New Haven was hit hard during the Spring of 2020 by COVID-19. In order to simultaneously protect and maximize our work-force while promoting social distancing, traditional subspecialty electives were not possible. Our dedicated and creative residents and faculty were able to quickly produce and supervise multiple distance learning initiatives, including:
- Distance Learning Electives in Nephrology, GI, Endocrinology, and Allergy and Immunology. Residents participated in case-based learning with primary literature support, with weekly guidance from faculty. Residents also participated in telemedicine visits. These were so successful that we are continuing in a modified form into this academic year.
- Distance Learning Bingo – Resident were able to participate in supplemental activities related to the Tracks program, including guided QI activities, journal clubs and educator development
During the COVID-19 pandemic, our hospital has invested significantly in the health and well-being of our residents, providing a reliable and accurate dashboard showing our PPE supply with clear communication around planning.
We created ward structures for pediatric volunteers on adult units with consistent support from MedPeds faculty. Our residents provided amazing care to patients in this time of crisis, and we are proud to say that we have had no pediatric residents infected with COVID-19.
Global Health Track
We have a long-standing Global Health program here at Yale. Interested residents apply into this experience late in their PGY1 year and those who participate receive dedicated didactic education through a structured 2-week elective at Yale and opportunities throughout the year via our refugee and Y-CHIC clinics. Though the current global pandemic had made this challenging, we aim for all residents to have a 4-6 week immersive experience in a global health setting and we have several global partners in countries including Rwanda, Uganda, Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
Tracks in the Yale Pediatrics program are flexible and opt-in. Many residents seek to complete more than one, and interested residents can participate in activities that appeal to them, even if they aren’t formally enrolled in the track.
Tracks are meant to couple professional development with scholarly activity, and we structure it this way to formalize the didactic components as well as the mentorship pool.
Residents who complete a track are recognized at graduation with this additional distinction.