The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education's (ACGME) new requirements limiting work hours, requiring demonstration of competence in six core areas, and emphasizing the importance of a humane, collegial environment, raise multiple challenges for academic medical centers; i.e., for example new resources to care for patients whose care cannot be provided by residents, new curricula to be learned, taught, and methods developed for evaluation are just two. From recently published reports, we know more about the course of emotion and attitude change during training and differences among resident groups. We have been provided information about resident "burnout", physician wellness, and the importance of self-reflection [1-8]. Our own studies have shed light on both residents' attitudes and emotions as well as perceived positive and negative aspects of training – across specialties, and over training years [9-13]. Finally there are some recent reports about change in satisfaction and work hours among small groups of faculty and residents after the implementation of the ACGME requirements [14-18]. However, no previous study has undertaken an evaluation of career satisfaction, emotional states, perceived positive and negative experiences, work hours and sleep among all faculty and residents in an academic institution simultaneously. While other studies have looked at single specialties, this research addresses these issues for all specialties in the academic medical center.
This study utilized a previously validated survey instrument (Profile of Mood States) to evaluate satisfaction with career choice and emotional states among all residents and all faculty in one large academic medical center. The survey took place at mid-year, a time that typically represents the peak period of negative feelings and attitudes among residents about their career choices .