McMaster University - General Pathology - Hamilton
McMaster University has a long history of strong residency programs in General Pathology (GP). The program has been adaptable to the changing political landscape in healthcare and is proud to have contributed to the national as well as international cohort of pathologists. Currently there is a national, as well as global, shortage of pathologists, so now is a good time to consider pathology as a career.
Content and Organization of the Program
- PGY 1 (1 year of clinical rotations in Internal Medicine, Surgery, Gynecology, Radiology, Laboratory Medicine and a variety of electives.)
- PGY 2 – a one month autopsy pathology, routine surgical pathology at 3 Hamilton sites, weekday service duties approx. 1 in 5, weekend call approx. 1 in 8 (home call). Medical Microbiology 2 months, Medical Biochemistry 2 months.
- PGY 3 General Pathology – 2 months each of clinical chemistry, hematology and microbiology and 6 months of anatomical pathology, molecular pathology 2 months.
- PGY 4 Anatomical Pathology – forensic pathology (3 months), cytology (2 months), neuropathology (1 month), pediatric pathology (1 month), up to 12 months of electives and/or research.
- PGY 5 General Pathology — forensic pathology (2 months), cytology (2 months), 4 months each of Clinical Chemistry, Hematology and Microbiology, 6 months elective time, 1 month community hospital.
Each site within the HRLMP has specific areas of expertise; therefore, in PGY years 2 & 3, residents rotate around the sites, gaining a broad experience in GP. Each site has their own specific pathology and pathology/clinical rounds as well as hospital rounds.
Several community hospitals are accredited for core community hospital rotations for research. Waterloo, Barrie and Brantford have been introduced as an elective community hospital rotation site.
Manditory academic half days are every Wednesday morning. Topics are covered on roughly a two year cycle with approx. once every two months being a critical appraisal session. Residents in their PGY 1 year, join their home programs’ academic half day approximately once per month.
Every 3 months there are multidisciplinary half days on Wednesday afternoon organized by Postgraduate Education, and cover topics of interest to all residents.
Academic and Scholarly Aspects of the Program
Residents are expected to present at the Annual Residents Research Day. PGY 2 residents often work up an interesting case; however in later years they are encouraged to undertake more comprehensive projects.
Evaluation of Resident Performance
At the end of each rotation a standard resident evaluation form will be completed by the rotation supervisor with input from other staff as appropriate. A midterm evaluation is completed by the rotation supervisor. For short rotations, a midterm evaluation may not be feasible and therefore ongoing feedback is provided to the resident. Residents will also complete an exit exam after the rotation.
Residents may apply for reserach grants, to help support research projects.
Living in Hamilton
Hamilton is uniquely situated in the Golden Horseshoe region – close to Toronto and all of its attractions, yet far enough away from the fast city pace of the big city. Hamilton itself has many cultural activities and events. There is easy access to parks, conservation areas, walking and biking trails. For individuals with families, there are many family orientated communities with good schooling.