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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 113-120

Postgraduate orthopedic training in Saudi Arabia: A need assessment for change

1 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Security Forces Hospital, Makkah, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Umm Al Qura University, Makkah, Saudi Arabia
3 King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Ministry of National Guard, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
4 Department of Surgery, Prince Mohamed Bin Abdulaziz Hospital, Ministry of National Guard, Almadinah Almunawwarah, Saudi Arabia
5 Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Canada

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Khalid H Alzahrani
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Security Forces Hospital, Makkah
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmsr.jmsr_14_18

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Objectives: Orthopedic residency training program in Saudi Arabia is one of the relatively new programs that are being expanded to accommodate a growing need. This program has not been studied systematically before. As such, assessing orthopedic trainees' needs and evaluating the program from the trainees' perspective are essential components to ensure optimal training. The purpose of this study was to assess Saudi orthopedic trainees' perceptions of the content and adequacy of their current training and its impact on knowledge and skills acquisition. Methods: Electronic questionnaire surveys were sent to all postgraduate orthopedic trainees in Saudi Arabia. A 36-items questionnaire was constructed and piloted. A 5-point Likert scale was used to obtain trainees' rating of six main areas of training. Results: Seventy-four out of 104 trainees responded to the survey (71%). Sixty-five percent of trainees rated their satisfaction with the current program as neutral (46%) or satisfactory (20%) and 34% were dissatisfied. A perceived lack of rotation-specific learning objectives (63%), suboptimal technical skills training and practice opportunities including exposure as the primary surgeon (80%), and lack of feedback (80%) were some of the main concerns expressed by trainees. Conclusions: This study highlights several areas for improvement in the current program to address trainees' learning needs and optimize surgical competency. The observed large percentage of trainees' dissatisfaction seems to be predominantly related to the lack of surgical exposure; a parameter that could be improved. In addition, research to address the training needs of orthopedic educators and program directors' perspective is required.

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