Results of the 2005-2008 Association of Residents in Radiation Oncology survey of chief residents in the United States: clinical training and resident working conditions.


Journal Article

PURPOSE: To document clinical training and resident working conditions reported by chief residents during their residency. METHODS AND MATERIALS: During the academic years 2005 to 2006, 2006 to 2007, and 2007 to 2008, the Association of Residents in Radiation Oncology conducted a nationwide survey of all radiation oncology chief residents in the United States. Chi-square statistics were used to assess changes in clinical training and resident working conditions over time. RESULTS: Surveys were completed by representatives from 55 programs (response rate, 71.4%) in 2005 to 2006, 60 programs (75.9%) in 2006 to 2007, and 74 programs (93.7%) in 2007 to 2008. Nearly all chief residents reported receiving adequate clinical experience in commonly treated disease sites, such as breast and genitourinary malignancies; and commonly performed procedures, such as three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy and intensity-modulated radiotherapy. Clinical experience in extracranial stereotactic radiotherapy increased over time (p < 0.001), whereas clinical experience in endovascular brachytherapy (p <0.001) decreased over time. The distribution of gynecologic and prostate brachytherapy cases remained stable, while clinical case load in breast brachytherapy increased (p = 0.006). A small but significant percentage of residents reported receiving inadequate clinical experience in pediatrics, seeing 10 or fewer pediatric cases during the course of residency. Procedures involving higher capital costs, such as particle beam therapy and intraoperative radiotherapy, and infrequent clinical use, such as head and neck brachytherapy, were limited to a minority of institutions. Most residency programs associated with at least one satellite facility have incorporated resident rotations into their clinical training, and the majority of residents at these programs find them valuable experiences. The majority of residents reported working 60 or fewer hours per week on required clinical duties. CONCLUSIONS: Trends in clinical training and resident working conditions over 3 years are documented to allow residents and program directors to assess their residency training.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Gondi, V; Bernard, JR; Jabbari, S; Keam, J; de Amorim Bernstein, KL; Dad, LK; Li, L; Poppe, MM; Strauss, JB; Chollet, CT; ARRO Executive Committee,

Published Date

  • November 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 81 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 1120 - 1127

PubMed ID

  • 20932679

Pubmed Central ID

  • 20932679

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-355X

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0360-3016

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2010.07.018


  • eng