Administrative restructuring of a residency training program for improved efficiency and output.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES Canadian residency training programs (RTP) have a program director (PD) and a residency program committee (RPC) overseeing program administration. Limited guidance is available about the ideal administrative structure of an RTP. This article describes administrative load in Canadian RTPs, presents a novel approach to delegating core administrative tasks within the RTP, and provides initial impressions of positive outcomes following implementation of this new system. METHOD All PDs of Canadian psychiatry RTPs were surveyed with respect to their program administrative structure, involvement of their training committees, and the percentage of work done by the PD compared to the rest of the RPC. At Queen's University, program domains were created representing well-defined areas within the RTP, each being assigned a program domain manager. RESULTS RPCs were mainly consultative, averaging 14 members. The average PD: RPC workload ratio was 80:20. Three programs allowed for 50% of the program director's time to be dedicated to serving that position, with an average time dedication of 37%. CONCLUSION The position of PD in psychiatry requires an average of 37% of the program director's time, while carrying an estimated 82% of the administrative workload. The program domain manager administration system implemented at Queen's University enabled the PD to be simultaneously up to date with all major areas of the program while experiencing a substantial decrease in the administrative workload, achieved through increased work contribution of the RPC. This system encourages closer involvement of RPC members in decision making and development of their program domains, allowing the PD more time for developing, implementing and overseeing innovations across the RTP spectrum. Furthermore, it has led to a PD: RPC workload shift from a ratio of 90:10 to one of about 60:40. Essentially, this resulted in a more efficient and adaptable RPC and RTP.

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Cite this paper

@article{Zyl2005AdministrativeRO, title={Administrative restructuring of a residency training program for improved efficiency and output.}, author={Louis T van Zyl and Susan Finch and Paul R. Davidson and Julio E Arboleda-Fl{\'o}rez}, journal={Academic psychiatry : the journal of the American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training and the Association for Academic Psychiatry}, year={2005}, volume={29 5}, pages={464-70} }