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Surgical Pathology Curriculum*
The basic learning objectives of the rotations in surgical pathology are encompassed in the six competencies outlined below as well as the two skill levels that follow.
Analyze clinical data and other relevant information
Communicate with clinicians to obtain and transmit pertinent patient information
Effectively communicate pathologic findings to colleagues and provide consultative information regarding patient management
Complete work in timely manner in the interest of patient care and management and reduced turn-around time
Demonstrate familiarity with normal histology
Gain knowledge and technical skills to recognize, interpret, and explain pathologic processes in the clinical practice of surgical pathology
Develop an understanding of basic pathologic processes
Develop a basic knowledge of surgical pathology.
PRACTICE-BASED LEARNING AND IMPROVEMENT
Understand necessary components of surgical pathology report
Evaluate adequacy of clinical information provided on surgical pathology forms
Describe gross surgical specimens and obtain adequate tissue sections
Dissect tissues as appropriate to preserve important pathological features or anatomic landmarks
Demonstrates technical ability, timeliness, and appropriate communication when performing frozen sections
Suggests and interprets appropriate additional studies, e.g. Immunohistochemistry, electron microscopy, etc.
Investigate cases using texts, journal articles, and internet sources
Integrate clinical and laboratory data to arrive at diagnosis
Understands principles of quality control, e.g. detection of errors in slides or specimen labeling, poor staining, inadequate controls, lost specimens, etc.
Takes suitable gross and microscopic photographs to demonstrate important positive or negative findings
Understands operation of histology laboratory, equipment, organization, and procedures, e.g. tissue processing, embedding specimen orientation, and slide preparation
Effectively utilizes local computer network
Recognizes need for expedited specimens
Knowledge of precautions to be taken against infections and other hazards in the handling of fresh tissue during intraoperative consultations.
Demonstrates knowledge of the appropriate storage and disposal of tissues and fixatives.
Demonstrates knowledge of the common pathogens that can be transmitted to laboratory personnel in pathology, as well as basic safety precautions to be taken in the anatomic pathology laboratory, including universal precautions for infectious agents.
INTERPERSONAL AND COMMUNICATION SKILLS
Communicates effectively with clinicians and other health care providers to obtain information and provide consultations
Effectively teaches other physicians, students, and health care workers
Interacts effectively with administrative, secretarial, clerical, and technical staff
Demonstrates willingness to present cases at departmental and multidisciplinary conferences
Demonstrates effective communication skills in case presentations and other meetings
Appropriately uses and responds to e-mail and other communications
Prepares and organizes for slide sign-out and, if necessary, reviews previous surgical or cytopathology material
Follows up by completing unfinished cases and collecting needed information
Adheres to ethical principles, accepts responsibility for actions, admits mistakes, recognizes and addresses ethical dilemmas, maintains patient confidentiality
Recognizes limits of abilities and need to consult with others
Works effectively with members of the health care team, demonstrating courtesy and responsiveness to views of others
Is sensitive to diversity of coworkers and patients
Engages in ongoing learning; shows initiative in seeking new information; asks knowledgeable and well-informed questions
Implements improvement activities; changes behavior in response to feedback
Understands and complies with HIPAA and other regulations regarding patient confidentiality and handling of tissues for diagnosis and research
Accepts responsibility and follow through on tasks
Maintains log of surgical pathology and frozen sections cases
Is punctual, arriving on time for sign-out sessions and conferences
Participates in institutional conferences dealing with management, quality assurance, graduate medical education, and other medical center and hospital functions
Understands the importance of cost conscious medical care; avoids unnecessary procedures but does not compromise quality of care
Attends interdisciplinary conferences
Skill Level I
*Adapted from ADASP Working Group. Curriculum content and evaluation of resident competency in anatomic pathology, 2003.