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Summa Health System Orthopaedic Residency Program

Jeffrey Junko, M.D. , Residency Director, Department of Orthopaedics, Orthopaedic Focus Winter 2010

The orthopaedic residency program at summa health system has established itself as one of the elite community-based residency programs in the country. Many exciting developments have unfolded over the past year, which should help to maintain summa health system's position among leading orthopaedic training programs across the United States.

Under the leadership of Scott Weiner, M.D., chairman of the department of orthopaedics, the program will grow in 2011 from three residents per year to four. Graduating top-notch surgeons has always been the goal of this institution and, with the program’s recent expansion; the opportunity exists to produce more well-balanced surgeons who provide optimum patient care.

As our nation’s population ages, orthopaedic care will become increasingly important. Summa Health System’s goal is to ensure well trained orthopaedic surgeons are available throughout the region. The expansion of the program, which can only be granted by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, is a testament to Summa’s commitment to Northeast Ohio.

As with any expansion, there will be certain challenges to overcome to ensure success. One of the fundamental requirements for a thriving residency is a stable of highly trained and motivated teachers and mentors.

Each resident requires a set number of months in each subspecialty, which includes:
• Hand surgery
• Joint replacement
• Foot and ankle
• Spine
• Sports medicine
• Musculoskeletal oncology
• Trauma
• Pediatrics
• Shoulder
• Research

Summa Health System is fortunate to have an expert teaching staff on which to rely, with each sub-specialty being represented. Residents are exposed to the full gamut of orthopaedic care during their training at Summa and do not have to travel to other locations for rotation.

A foundation grounded in excellent patient care will continue to be the premise on which all residents are taught. It is the hope of Summa Health System that an expanded program will help ensure our community’s needs are met now and in the future.

Research and innovation – as with any field of study – are required in order to expand our knowledge and help combat disease and disability. Increased emphasis on research initiatives and idea generation has been a major area of effort within the residency program.

The recent formation of the Austen Bioinnovation Institute in Akron has allowed the residency to establish ties with basic scientists and innovators interested in improving orthopaedic care. These relationships have already produced research in conjunction with several of our resident physicians in various areas, including cartilage regeneration, growth plate abnormalities, bone substitutes and 3-D computer modeling to help surgeons plan surgeries.

This type of research positions our resident physicians to be future leaders and innovators in orthopaedic care. Several residents have been invited to present their findings at national meetings, some even winning awards for their efforts.

The future of orthopaedic care in our community looks bright and Summa Health System has every intention of leading physician training, research and innovation in this area.

Through diligence and hard work, the resident physicians at Summa Health System will continue to be recognized and applauded for their commitment to patient care and innovation.