Rush University Medical Center

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(Updated: January 01, 2012)
Overall rating 
 
7.7
Staff Surgeons 
 
9.0
Didactics/Teaching 
 
7.0
Operating Experience 
 
4.0
Clinical Experience 
 
6.0
Research 
 
10.0
Residents 
 
8.0
Lifestyle 
 
10.0
Location 
 
9.0
Overall Experience 
 
6.0

Not all it was hyped up to be

Program Review

Staff / Faculty / Chairman
Great faculty that attract a lot of volume. The staff are approachable and have connections to get you into good fellowships for certain subspecialties.
Didactics / Teaching
They have the usual- morning rounds for overnight ED trauma cases, grand rounds, and a couple didactic sessions during the week but nothing on the weekend. Nothing extraordinary.
Operating Experience
Having perspective now as a resident, I can look back and say that I totally agree with other comments on this forum that there is a lack of operative experience at Rush. The attendings are very hands. Besides the joints service, there is very little hands on operative experience compared to what I've seen elsewhere and experienced. The fellows get to operate a decent amount. The lack of trauma is a huge negative for the program because that is often where you get autonomy. The bone is the deepest thing in the body and that's where you get good at anatomy and exposures. It's bread and butter orthopaedics that they just don't get enough of in my opinion.
Clinic Experience
The one on one attending type set up allows for good clinical exposure but the residents don't dictate. You may think that's a good thing at first but I can tell you from experience you want to dictate and learn how, it forces you to think deeper about the diagnosis and treatment plan. There is also no resident run/community clinic where you follow your own patients and make your own decisions- because all their patients are well insured. Cook county fulfills their acgme trauma requirement but I think there is still a lack of autonomous yet supervised clinical decision making.
Research Opportunities
Plentiful, it's well known.
Residents
A good midwest group of residents. It's a large enough program to where you'll probably have 3-4 co-residents you really get along with and that's your possy, just like med school. That's all you really need.
Lifestyle
One of the easiest. I would disagree that this is a work hard play hard program. They don't work that hard actually, no in house call (at least when I rotated, heard they may have changed that and are trying to become level 1)! You learn a lot getting consulted all night in house, they don't have that opportunity except at cook county.
Location / Housing
It's Chicago...
Limitations
Lack of operative experience would leave you as a sub par surgeon but hey, you'll have a cush residency in a great city and land a great fellowship with a great CV full of research. If that's what you want (which is a lot of people) then great!
Overall Rotation Experience / Conclusion
Lack of operative/clinical autonomy is concerning.

Qualification

I rotated as a medical student at this program
Date of Rotation
2007
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(Updated: October 23, 2007)
Overall rating 
 
7.8
Staff Surgeons 
 
9.0
Didactics/Teaching 
 
8.0
Operating Experience 
 
3.0
Clinical Experience 
 
6.0
Research 
 
10.0
Residents 
 
7.0
Lifestyle 
 
10.0
Location 
 
10.0
Overall Experience 
 
7.0

Rush

Program Review

Staff / Faculty / Chairman
The personality of the faculty at Rush is great. Many of them are truly master surgeons, and they are, by and large, a very friendly group that is easy-going. Dr. Jacobs, the new chairman, is an awesome guy. My major concern about the faculty will be discussed in operating experience below.
Didactics / Teaching
There's a good mix of resident- and faculty-led didactics. The faculty are usually very in-tune with teaching the residents the "book stuff." All the rotators I was with on my month acknowledged that these residents really knew their stuff.
Operating Experience
In my opinion, the operating experience at Rush leaves a tremendous amount to be desired. I believe the fact that the surgeons are all in private practice contributes somewhat to this. There is a palpable atmosphere that the attendings are trying to pump out as much volume as they can. As a result, there is little time to let residents "find their way" through cases. Note that this often extends into the chief year as well. There were many times when I witnessed the chief resident on a service start a case, only to have the attending pop in after exposure was done to perform the actual substance of the case. As a student, it became routine that I did not get to help close, and I believe this is because closing was frequently the only part of the case that a resident would have to him- or herself. The presence of lots of fellows further exacerbated the situation. I felt that the residents were less comfortable in the O.R. than their peers at other institutions. This sentiment was shared by the majority of the other rotators with me, who were on a variety of services, though I know the Rush residents would dispute this point.
Clinic Experience
Clinic is clinic. I spent most of my time in the O.R., so it's tough for me the comment. One thing I didn't like is that the residents don't get to dictate, at least not on the services I was on. I know that having to dictate can be a pain, but from personal experience I find that dictating helps synthesize your thought process and makes you really think about the clinical decision-making in each case.
Research Opportunities
I didn't do any of this on my month-long rotation, but my impression is that the research opportunities at Rush are awesome. Many of the faculty are very prolific publishers, and having lots of fellows really creates an environment where there's lots of projects for residents to jump on.
Residents
A great group of people. They are a pretty close bunch. Many of them make a habit of going out to a Friday happy hour each week. I had a great time hanging out with the residents both in and out of the hospital during my rotation. As mentioned above, they are also very smart in terms of orthopaedic knowledge. I would be very comfortable training with the residents at Rush.
Lifestyle
Cush. This is a "gentleman's program." I heard one resident said that he doesn't think residents often work more than 60 hours per week. I would tend to agree with him based on what I saw. Call is a joke. I'm not sure, but I think I remember that trauma call is home call. Rush is a level II trauma center, and the Illinois Medical District is replete with emergency rooms. Most of what comes in is old ladies with broken hips. The major trauma experience for the Rush residents comes from Cook County Hospital and a chief year rotation out in Rockford.
Location / Housing
Chicago is awesome, and the relatively cush schedule makes it easy to explore the city during the rotation. The hospital is accessible by public transportation, and parking is available for residents and students. Housing isn't provided by Rush, but no one had trouble finding a place to stay for the month.
Limitations
The program director has been very receptive to the needs of the program, as you can see above. In one year, we have addressed many of the shortcomings noted in the previous review. While this program, like all, has areas that can be improved, it is obvious that the administration behind the University of Florida program is committed to addressing those deficiencies quickly.
Overall Rotation Experience / Conclusion
I had a great time at Rush. It was a fun place to do a rotation. That said, the environment I witnessed in the O.R. gives me reservations about the operative training at this program. The name is fantastic, though, and the residents can pretty much go where they want in terms of fellowships. It just depends on what you're looking for.

Qualification

I rotated as a medical student at this program
Date of Rotation
2007
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