Anatomic Pathology Program

Residency Curriculum in Laboratory Management

Goals and Objectives

In order to not only compete, but to thrive in the current healthcare environment, all pathologists need to acquire a working knowledge of the history of health care delivery models in the US, methods of reimbursement for technical and professional activities, the possible professional relationships of pathologists to hospitals, clinics, and physician groups, the basic principles of accounting, and essentials of laboratory management. Over the past 15 years, we have found that no single method has been effective in teaching these diverse skills and we have repeatedly revised the management rotation to respond to changing needs.

Description and Duration of the Experience

Four principal components define the core of the education in laboratory management for residents in Pathology: 1) a series of 11 seminars presented at monthly intervals, 2) the CAP virtual management college monthly teleconferences, 3) a month-long core rotation in laboratory management, and 4) active participation annually in a college or health care system committee.

The 11 seminars are presented by faculty members and administrators in the Division of Laboratory Medicine and elsewhere within the Hershey Medical Center. The titles have been selected following discussions by senior faculty and managers and include needs identified in a survey of graduates of the program conducted in 1998. The seminars are designed to provide an introduction to terms and concepts in not only laboratory administration, but health care delivery and financing in general. The seminars are provided for the education of attending staff as well as residents, and the series is updated and repeated in alternate years.

The CAP virtual management college teleconferences is a novel approach to introducing residents to a variety of issues using audio conferencing. The presentations are made by national faculty experts. At the conclusion of each session, there is an opportunity for questions from the residents or other participants at each site.

The month-long core rotation in laboratory management is intended to permit a senior level resident to participate intensively in laboratory management as practiced at the Hershey Medical Center. The resident is expected to attend many of the conferences and discussions as directed by the laboratory manager. In addition, prior to initiating the rotation, the resident working with members of the Laboratory Administration Committee, selects a project which might be focused in Anatomic or Clinical Pathology or which might bridge these sections. A written report is expected from the resident at the completion of the rotation (or completion of the project, if longer than one month) which describes the project, the method of data collection and analysis, and assessment or recommendations. One of the faculty members on the Laboratory Administration Committee serves as the advisor for the project, and provides an evaluation of the resident's performance on this rotation.

Every resident is appointed annually to a committee within the department, the college of medicine or the health system. The committee appointments carry the same expectations for attendance and participation as for any other full member of the committee.

Method(s) of Evaluation

  • The residents serve on each committee with another faculty level representative from the department of Pathology who serves as advisor and provides a brief written evaluation at the end of each academic year.
  • A self assessment test prepared by the College of American Pathologists is available for the residents upon completion of the month long rotation in laboratory management.
  • One of the faculty members on the Laboratory Administration Committee serves as the advisor to the resident during their lab management rotations and for their project, and in conjunction with the Laboratory Manager provides an evaluation of the resident's performance on this rotation.
  • Residents will be evaluated based on direct observation by faculty.
  • After each rotation, residents will be evaluated by faculty in New Innovations.