The 21 Summa emergency medicine residents who had to find new programs after Summa lost its ability to train them after July 1 will scatter around the country. Four will stay in the area at Cleveland Clinic Akron General.
Six others are remaining in Ohio, too. The other 11 will fan out to Louisiana, California, Virginia, Illinois, Texas, South Carolina, North Carolina, Utah and Minnesota, said Dr. Cindy Kelley, Summa’s vice president of medical education.
The young doctors had different reasons, such as being near family or going to train somewhere they’ve always wanted to go, including Stanford and Duke universities, she said.
“Some of them are really embracing it as an opportunity, but that’s not to take away from the fact that it is a huge disruption to them and it’s stressful.”
After an the abrupt changeover of Summa’s longtime ER physician group and months of upheaval, which included hundreds of doctors calling for the resignation of then-CEO Thomas Malone, a national accreditation group suspended Summa’s emergency medicine program. The hospital system was also put on probation, prohibiting it from starting new residency programs or increasing the size of those that already exist.
Summa is preparing for a June 13 return visit from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), Kelley said. In October, a special committee will decide whether to lift Summa’s systemwide probation, she said. Summa intends to re-establish the ER residency program, but “it’s not something we’re going to rush. We need to get a lot of pieces in place.”
The ER residents will continue working until June 23 and will be given a vacation week to move. Summa, with help from the medical staff, is also providing moving expenses: $2,000 to those staying in Akron, $5,000 to those moving within Ohio and $8,000 for those moving out of state, she said.
Dr. Titus Sheers, chairman of medical education for Akron General, said the hospital is pleased it could provide spaces. It had received permission to accept as many as 12 residents, but Sheers said it wasn’t a “target number.”
Part of training at Akron General will include psychological support.
“By definition, this was a traumatic occurrence that they didn’t sign up for and their residency closed,” he said.
Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at www.ohio.com/betty