Message From Dr. Scott Reeves

The Department of Anesthesia's “can-do” mentality along with all that our beautiful city has to offer creates a wonderful environment in which to train, work and live.

Read The Chair's Message

Resident Life

Graduating Class of 2021

The MUSC department of Anesthesiology puts just as much emphasis on work life balance as it does on learning and education. We recognize that residency is a stressful time, and that allowing ample time to relax and enjoy the beautiful city of Charleston with co-residents, friends and family is an important part of stress relief and mental health. We are lucky to be in a place where we can take advantage of the lively culture and many local activities on a regular basis.

Resident Support Network:

We consider our residents part of the family and frequently rely on each other for social support during this time of transition and constant flux. Many of our residents move to Charleston with significant others, spouses, pets, and children. The city is certainly family friendly, and there are many resources available to hospital staff. The other residents and faculty are a wealth of information when it comes to dog-walkers, new jobs, daycare, and schooling. Incoming residents also receive contact information for some commonly use realtors by the university if you are looking to purchase a home. 

Events:

RIverDogs Game 2019

RiverDogs Game 2019

Our department hosts a multitude of events for the purpose of faculty, resident, CRNA, nursing and support staff inclusion and morale. These range from the new intern welcome party at the River Dogs Stadium, the annual Christmas party at the Charleston Yacht club, a monthly journal club, and department-sponsored anesthesia conferences.

Outside of the OR:

Residents

Department Christmas Party

Residents

You can catch residents and their families all around the Lowcountry. There is a never-ending list of activities in the local area including kayaking through the waterways, exploring one of the many local breweries, boating in the harbor, or relaxing on the weekend at one of many local beaches. Many of us also take advantage of our 3 weeks of vacation to travel the world like two of our residents Armando Aguilera and Jaime Adams on their trip to Banff in Canada in 2019.

Graduation Picture from 2021

 

 

Wellness Initiative Committee:

In the MUSC Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine we do our best to maintain a culture of comradery, support and wellness. Our residents are a close group, and we foster this as a department, as this support is key to our resident’s resilience. Having a four-year program, we recognize that each class may have different needs throughout our varied training locations and intensities. To address this a class representative system was created in 2017 to give each class and individual residents a direct voice to the program director and the program evaluation committee. Residents are also encouraged to bring their individual needs directly to the Education Office, Program Director or Associate Program Director. All of our residents have access to free mental health resources through the employee assistance program (EAP). Additionally, all of our residents have free membership at the MUSC Wellness Center which is an expansive facility providing exercise equipment, free weights, swimming, basketball, racquetball, tennis, soccer and intramural sports. When on call we provide meal vouchers and have healthy snacks available to feed busy residents.

Wellness Committee

A formal wellness committee for faculty and residents was started in 2018 led by Dr. Gracie Davis and supported by the Program Director. The goals are to promote physical, mental and emotional well-being, to prevent physician burnout, and to teach coping mechanisms for residency and professional practice.

Current areas of focus:

I. Debriefing:   A peer led group meets monthly to discuss and share various experiences of resident life freely and without judgement that may be weighing on residents. This is in conjunction with our just culture process when adverse events occur in our residents’ practice.

II. Health:   Promoting department wellness through promotion of exercise and healthy diet for busy physicians and promoting wellness events in the community.

III. COVID Challenges:   We also have placed an emphasis on prevention, treatment and outreach for those suffering from mental illness, stress and burnout from the challenges of COVID 19.

IIII. Medical Inequities:  We have begun a Medical Inequities curriculum that will allow a resident to lead a department-wide discussion on specific group challenges and how we can help overcome them as anesthesiologists in our practice. 

Yearly social events such as our resident welcome party, Christmas party, Charleston RiverDogs events, resident vs faculty bowling tournament, graduation and journal clubs allow our department to positively interact outside of work. Team building events include the entire PGY-2 class attending the NC/SC annual meeting together and undergoing a teamwork ropes course.

Wellness Resources

• Employee Assistance Program

• Wellness Center | Recorded Class Request Page

• MUSC Employee Wellbeing Collective

• COVID-19 Resiliency Clinic

• Arts in Healing

• Pastoral and Spiritual Care Services

• Well Being MyQuest Modules

• Crisis Line Link

o Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the US to text with a trained Crisis Counselor

o National Suicide Prevention Line - available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255

Vacation:  A total of 15 vacation days, 5 sick days, and 1 educational meeting (5 educational days maximum) are allowed per year. Per Institutional GME rules, all due vacation days for the current academic year must be taken during that time period. Vacation and sick days may not be rolled over to the next academic year.

Sick Leave: A total of 5 sick days will be allowed annually and can’t be rolled over to next year. In special circumstances.

Extended Leave (Including Maternity and Paternity Leave): A resident may be absent from training up to a total of 60 working days (12 weeks) during the CA 1-3 years of training.

 

Wellness during Pregnancy

We want all residents to be able to raise a family during training if they desire in a safe and supporting environment. The following principles are our programs commitment to supporting healthy pregnancies in our program.

1.) Please let the program director know of your pregnancy as soon as you are comfortable.

This allows us to ensure you and your child are being protected while at work. The pregnant anesthesiologist may have concerns about exposures and workplace challenges. The overall approach is for staff to do what they’re comfortable with, make choices known to your supervisors early, and if staff find they are unable to perform regular daily duties, discuss this with the chiefs/program director/supervisors to come up with a plan.

2.) Environmental exposure:

o   Radiation: Please contact Elizabeth Morrison to assist you with obtaining a pregnancy radiation badge so we can ensure your exposure levels are kept within a safe range. If you would like to minimize radiation exposure, please communicate this to the program director and chief residents who will then distribute this to the DOD’s to minimize the amount of daily communication you have to perform. Please realize that full avoidance of radiation especially on call will be difficult. Wearing wrap around “pregnancy lead aprons “and standing back 6 feet from the source should reduce radiation exposure to minimal levels. In fluoroscopy cases if it is unavoidable utilize the standing floor screens to act as a second layer of protection and whenever possible ask for someone to replace you during the radiation heavy portions of the case. The program will ensure that wrap around pregnancy lead is available at each clinical site.

o   MRI: The risk of fetal exposure if outside of the magnet area is very low. Remember magnetic fields drop off exponentially with distance so stay as far away as practical from the source.

o   Anesthetic gases: Exposure to gases should be low in the rapid air turnover environment of the OR with active scavenging systems but mask ventilation and inhalational inductions should be avoided when possible. There is a theoretical risk that N2O specifically is teratogenic, so it is best to avoid utilizing this during pregnancy. If the resident prefers not to mask ventilate especially on pediatric rotations, please make sure your attending is aware so you can have a different plan in mind.

o   Chemotherapeutic agents: rarely we can be involved in surgical procedures involving chemotherapeutic application in body cavities. Pregnant residents should not participate in the care of these patients as avoiding contact with excretions, sweat and urine is not always possible.

o   Infectious risk: Various pathogens such as the flu and COVID 19 pose special risks for pregnant residents. Whenever possible we will minimize your exposure to these patients provided back up care is available. Please always follow good hand hygiene and wear appropriate protective equipment.

3.) Schedule changes:

Based off current literature it is advisable to modify the work patterns of residents during pregnancy to acknowledge the strain it places on the body especially during the third trimester to optimize outcomes. We will ensure the following: (a) Residents have no more than 6 overnight calls per month during the third trimester. (b) Residents are not required to “preload” calls during pregnancy in anticipation of leave.

(c) Residents will only have to make up weekend calls missed during their leave.  (d) The resident’s physician will determine a resident’s fitness for duty during the pregnancy in consultation with the program director. If light duty is prescribed, we will utilize the perioperative medicine clinic or other non-OR rotations to avoid excessive time away from training. Call will be 100% covered for residents on light duty restrictions.

City of Charleston:

Consistently voted as one of the top cities in the country to visit, Charleston offers a wide variety of extracurricular activities to suite everyone's interests. For those wishing to explore new scenery or have a long weekend away from home, popular driving destinations include Edisto Beach, SC, Kiawah Island, SC, Savannah, GA, Charlotte, NC and Asheville, NC.

Best City to visit in the world- #1 for 2020 - https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/cities-in-us

Best Restaurants- 4 of 25 best fine dining restaurants in US are in Charleston - https://www.tripadvisor.com/TravelersChoice-Restaurants-cFineDining-g191

Ashley River Tower

Downtown Charleston