A Descriptive Survey of Anesthesiology Residency Simulation Programs: How Are Programs Preparing Residents for the New American Board of Anesthesiology APPLIED Certification Examination?
Anesthesiology residency programs may need new simulation-based programs to prepare residents for the new Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) component of the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) Primary Certification process. The design of such programs may require significant resources, including faculty time, expertise, and funding, as are currently needed for structured oral examination (SOE) preparation. This survey analyzed the current state of US-based anesthesiology residency programs regarding simulation-based educational programming for SOE and OSCE preparation.METHODS:
An online survey was distributed to every anesthesiology residency program director in the United States. The survey included 15 to 46 questions, depending on each respondent's answers. The survey queried current practices and future plans regarding resident preparation specifically for the ABA APPLIED examination, with emphasis on the OSCE. Descriptive statistics were summarized. χ2 and Fisher exact tests were used to test the differences in proportions across groups. Spearman rank correlation was used to examine the association between ordinal variables.RESULTS:
The responding 66 programs (49%) were a representative sample of all anesthesiology residencies (N = 136) in terms of geographical location (χ2P = .58). There was a low response rate from small programs that have 12 or fewer clinical anesthesia residents. Ninety-one percent (95% confidence interval [CI], 84%–95%) of responders agreed that it is the responsibility of the program to specifically prepare residents for primary certification, and most agreed that it is important to practice SOEs (94%; 95% CI, 88%–97%) and OSCEs (89%; 95% CI, 83%–94%). While 100% of respondents reported providing mock SOEs, only 31% (95% CI, 24%–40%) of respondents provided mock OSCE experiences. Of those without an OSCE program, 75% (95% CI, 64%–83%) reported plans to start one. The most common reasons for not having an OSCE program already in place, and the perceived challenges for implementing an OSCE program, were the same: lack of time (faculty and residents), expertise in OSCE development and assessment, and funding.CONCLUSIONS:
The results provide data from residency programs for benchmarking their simulation curriculum and ABA APPLIED Examination preparation offerings. Despite agreement that residency programs should prepare residents for the ABA APPLIED Examination, many programs have yet to implement an OSCE preparation program, in part due to lack of financial resources, faculty expertise, and time. Additionally, in contrast to the SOE, the OSCE is a new format for ABA primary certification. As a result, the lack of consensus concerning preparation needs could be related to the amount information that is available regarding the examination content and assessment process.