American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Chattanooga

University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Chattanooga
Erlanger Health System, Chattanooga, TN

Number of Positions Offered: 1

Contact Information

TTP Chief

R. Phillip Burns, MD, FACS

Additional Information

979 East Third Street, Suite 401
Chattanooga, TN 37403
Fax: 423-778-2950

Administrative contact: Cindy Rudolph:; 423-778-7695


Program Highlights

The TTP Associate will begin with five to six months of monitored practice. The continuity with the Senior Associates during two to four week intervals will provide an opportunity for Senior Associates to become comfortable with the TTP Associate and make evaluation more accurate. The TTP steering committee will meet at the end of the monitored practice period and discuss each evaluation and decide the most appropriate timing for transition to independent practice. The education committee will reserve the right to shorten or extend the monitored practice period based on each individual TTP Associate’s progress in the program.

Program Description

The primary rotations and hospital experience of the TTP associate will occur outside the main UTCOMC teaching institution, such as Parkridge, Erlanger East, Memorial, and Athens Regional Medical Center. There are a large number of cases completed by the full- and part-time faculty in those sites, and abundant uncovered cases, both operative and non-operative, in which the TTP Associate may participate. It is expected that the TTP Associate will be especially interested in expanded experience in the outpatient setting and there will be no conflict with general surgery resident experience. Depending on the needs assessment of the TTP Associate, special rotations at the main Erlanger facility may be possible due to large patient volumes in areas such as breast, thoracic, or pediatric surgery. Call experience for the TTP Associate will initially be in sequence with other general surgery residents, and in the latter months of the TTP Program rotations it is anticipated that the TTP Associate will become more autonomous and responsible for independent attending call. During this phase of experience, junior residents will work with the TTP Associate in his or her role as an instructor in the department.

During this time the TTP Associate will work closely with faculty mentors in all phases of general practice. Continuous intervals of two to four weeks will be spent with Senior Associates evaluating office patients, operating on elective cases, and taking general surgery call. No general surgery resident coverage will be provided to the TTP Associate while on-call during this period.

The rural surgery rotation will occur early to expose the TTP Associate to this scope of practice and allow more time for decision making on future employment. Upon transition to the independent practice portion of the program the TTP Associate will take call as the primary surgeon. This will include 24-hour faculty mentor backup and general surgery resident coverage. TTP Associate responsibilities include patient evaluation and management, operative intervention, postoperative follow-up, and billing. During this period the TTP Associate will be provided a menu of electives (listed above) to tailor training and improve on needed or weak areas.

Senior Associates

W. Heath Giles, MD, FACS – TTP Associate Chief
Richard A. Moore, PhD, MD, FACS – TTP Associate Chief
Coleman L. Arnold, MD, FACS – Memorial Hospital TTP Director
William Todd Cockerham, MD, FACS – Parkridge Medical Center TTP Director
Steven Clark Kennedy, MD, FACS – Parkridge East Hospital TTP Director
*Thomas S. Layman, MD, FACS – Athens Regional Hospital TTP Director
Stephen Michael Roe, MD, FACS – Erlanger East TTP Director
Craig Steven Swafford, MD, FACS – Rhea Medical Center TTP Director
Benjamin Wall Dart IV, MD, FACS – TTP Steering Committee Member
Joseph B. Cofer, MD, FACS – TTP Steering Committee Member
Craig D. Sarine, MHA – Education Coordinator for TTP curriculum in business education and practice management

Other Key Faculty

*Preston W. Brown, MD, FACS
Michael G. Carr, MD
*James Robert Headrick, Jr., MD, FACS
Joseph E. Kelley, MD, FACS
Curtis S. Koontz, MD, FACS
Christopher J. LeSar, MD, FACS
Shauna Lorenzo-Rivero, MD, FACS
Lisa A. Smith, MD, FACS
J. Daniel Stanley, MD, FACS
*Michael P. Sumida, MD, FACS
Alvaro A. Valle, MD, FACS
Laura E. Witherspoon, MD, FACS

* Denotes clinical or part-time faculty