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Residency Wellness

At the University of Utah, we are committed to our residents' wellness. We are fortunate to have our institution as a committed partner. We continue to look at all variables that contribute to physician wellness starting with work environment and including social support, resiliency building, and culture. Examples of some of the initiatives we have in play include: 

Building Social Support

Before starting clinical rotations, the program arranges for all interns to spend two nights camping in Zion National Park as part of intern orientation. This is an amazing experience that allows trainees to connect with fellow colleagues and the Chief Medical Residents, all while enjoying the beauty and splendor of this unique national park. We have multiple residency-sponsored social events throughout the year that varies to appeal to all interests.

Work Environment

As a program, we aim to consistently evaluate and address organizational contributors to resident wellness. To accomplish this, we monitor work environments to identify areas for improvement and hold monthly feedback sessions with residents to discuss opportunities to improve program processes and systems. We listen to our residents and make thoughtful changes to our curriculum, schedules, and clinical rotations to maximize resident education and well-being. Examples of changes made as a result of resident feedback include: 

  1. Attending coverage of inpatient pagers during noon conference
  2. Reduced patient capacity for general medicine teams at Intermountain Medical Center and University of Utah Healthcare as well as the Shock Trauma ICU
  3. Income raise
  4. Continuity clinic residents are not expected to return to wards until 2 pm to give time to complete all documentation and follow-up inboxes
  5. Increased dedicated resident-as-teacher opportunities to our consult rotation
  6. Increased outpatient didactic sessions for senior residents on ambulatory rotations

Social Events

The residency program leadership hosts several events throughout the year, in addition to a number of resident coordinated events.  Please see the timeline below for an overview of these events/experiences our residents enjoy.

  •  Monthly Chief Office Hours at rotating breweries 
  • Intern class camping trip to Zion National Park
  • Pioneer Day BBQ
  • Twilight Summer concert series
  • IM Mountain Challenge
  • Fellowship match party
  • IM Holiday Party (coverage provided for all residents to attend) 
  • Intern Nordic Skiing wellness event
  • Senior scholarship day
  • Pride Parade
  • Graduation Party (coverage provided for all residents to attend) 
  • Outdoor movie screenings at Red Butte Garden

Resiliency Building

Throughout the year, several noon conferences and afternoon seminars will be dedicated to the subject of wellness and resiliency. From reflective writing to yoga to meditation sessions, we provide opportunities for our residents to explore ways to build resiliency. We have an indoor rock-climbing program that is free to all interns. During one of the Thursday afternoon seminars, trainees will learn how to belay and climb at one of the premiere rock-climbing gyms in Salt Lake City. This opportunity provides team building and an opportunity to reflect on the similarities between learning a new sport and learning how to be a doctor. We hope that this course provides trainees not only with a fun experience and belay certification, but also with the tools to regulate emotions in a high stress environment. We have multiple philanthropic opportunities throughout the year to provide community service and team building/social time for our residents.

Self Care

We offer personal half days on outpatient rotations so that residents can take care of personal health needs such as doctors' appointments and dental visits. We have GME-dedicated licensed therapists to offer counselling and care 100% confidential and free to all housestaff.