National efforts to reform residency education in surgery

Acad Med. 2007 Dec;82(12):1200-10. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0b013e318159e052.


Major changes in surgical practice and myriad external mandates have affected residency education in surgery. The traditional surgery residency education and training model has come under scrutiny, and calls for major reform of this model have been made by a variety of stakeholders. The American Surgical Association appointed a Blue Ribbon Committee in 2002 to consider the recent changes in surgical practice and surgical education and propose solutions that would ensure a well-educated and well-trained surgical workforce for the future. This committee included representatives from the American Surgical Association, the American College of Surgeons, the American Board of Surgery, and the Residency Review Committee for Surgery. The committee made several far-reaching recommendations relating to residency education in surgery. After the Blue Ribbon Committee completed its task in 2004, representatives from the aforementioned four organizations, the Association of Program Directors in Surgery, and the Association for Surgical Education created a national consortium called the Surgical Council on Resident Education (SCORE). This consortium is pursuing efforts to reform residency education in surgery and implement several key recommendations of the Blue Ribbon Committee. The principal area of focus of SCORE is the development of a national curriculum for surgery residency education and training. Other activities of SCORE include the development of a Web site to support surgery residency education and pursuit of international collaboration. SCORE's efforts will be key to offering surgery residents the best educational experiences, preparing residents for future practice, and supporting delivery of surgical care of the highest quality. The authors examine the current state of residency education in surgery and explore efforts underway to reform this educational model.

MeSH terms

  • Accreditation
  • Curriculum / standards
  • Education, Medical, Graduate / organization & administration*
  • Educational Measurement / methods
  • General Surgery / education*
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency / organization & administration*
  • Medicine
  • Models, Educational*
  • Societies, Medical
  • Specialization
  • United States