Prior to July 1996, residents were required to complete two years of preliminary training in General Surgery. This has now been replaced by a transitional year that is considered their first year of otolaryngology training. In 2004, the Residency Review Committee in Otolaryngology mandated the Program Director for each Otolaryngology residency insure that residents receive a balanced and appropriate surgical experience in this preliminary year. This curriculum must now include general surgery, critical care, neurosurgery and otolaryngology. Further, the Program Director must meet with the preliminary residents twice a year. This mandate is met through preliminary residents rotating one month at the NYEE, and through close cooperation between the Directors of Surgery and Otolaryngology. The program considers that the education of otolaryngology residents begins during the general surgery training. Residents are instructed to begin the American Academy of Otolaryngology Home Study Course and to complete general readings in otolaryngology while on Surgery.
Residents are required to take the annual surgery examination. The Director of the General Surgical Training Program (Dr. Jeffrey Leitman at Mount Sinai Beth Israel and Dr. Christopher Mills) participates in the ongoing evaluation of preliminary residents' surgical skills, patient care, moral character, and overall competence. The resident's educational experience is discussed and any problems encountered during the general surgical year are reviewed so that corrective action can be taken in a timely manner.