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

Opportunities and Resources

OGB Will Create a Database of Volunteer Opportunities

Operation Giving Back (OGB) is developing a new program that will focus on domestic volunteerism and the great work of ACS Fellows and organizations in the U.S. OGB is working on creating an online database of domestic volunteer opportunities that can be accessed by ACS members. Register your clinic here.

Questions can be directed to Brittanie Wilczak, Program Administrator, Operation Giving Back, at bwilczak@facs.org or 312-202-5458.

Utilize Resources from the Surgical Patient Education Program

The Surgical Patient Education Program provides quality, evidence-based strategies to educate the surgical patient and family to reduce complications, improve participation and outcomes, support transition to home, increase patient satisfaction, and reduce costs. Surgical Patient Education Resources are available to enable your chapter to get involved and promote the program. Resources include a welcome letter, a PowerPoint slide deck that chapters are encouraged to present at a chapter meeting, and a sample pack of materials free to members, including an ostomy skills kit, quit smoking before surgery brochure, and inguinal hernia brochure. For more information on the Surgical Patient Education Program, please contact Amanda Bruggeman at 312-202-5263 or abruggeman@facs.org.

ACS Hires New State Affairs Associate

The ACS State Affairs team recently hired Christian Johnson as the new State Affairs Associate. Christian joined ACS on May 1. A new map with the state assignments for Jon Sutton, Christopher Johnson, and Christian Johnson is available. Please contact Jon (jsutton@facs.org), Christopher (cjohnson@facs.org), or Christian (christianjohnson@facs.org) with any questions regarding state advocacy issues.

Access the New Surgeon and Resident Well-Being Index

All U.S. Fellows and Associate Fellows in active practice and residents and Fellows in training who are active, dues-paying members of the ACS are invited to use the Physician Well-Being Index. This validated screening tool provides an opportunity for you to better understand your overall well-being and identify areas of risk compared to physicians and residents across the nation. Visit the ACS Surgeon Well-Being page to learn more about the tool and how to access it, and review other helpful resources.

Operative Standards for Cancer Surgery Volume 2 Available in Late 2017

To address the technical aspects of standardizing surgical care, the American College of Surgeons Clinical Research Program (ACS CRP)—a program of the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology and the ACS—formed the Cancer Care Standards Development Committee. For more than three years, the Committee worked to develop a manual with the participation of more than 120 surgeons that details the critical elements of breast, colon, lung, and pancreatic cancer surgery.

The second volume of the Operative Standards for Cancer Surgery manual will be published in late 2017, and will include operations for melanoma, gastric cancer, esophageal cancer, rectal cancer, and thyroid cancer. The manual will be available for purchase on the Wolters Kluwer website. Contact Amanda Francescatti, Manager, ACS CRP, at afrancescatti@facs.org with any questions.

New Teaching Aides for Faculty

The ACS Board of Governors Surgical Training Workgroup has developed several educational resources for members that address the unique needs of faculty, particularly those surgeons practicing in nonacademic settings. Each module has been produced as a downloadable Power Point presentation and provides detailed strategies for resident and medical student teaching.

  • Teaching Millennials covers strategies for teaching young surgeons born between 1980 and 2000
  • Giving Constructive Feedback defines feedback and addresses why it’s important, discusses obstacles to providing effective feedback, and offers suggestions for providing feedback in real-world situations
  • Intraoperative Teaching covers techniques for surgical teaching in the preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative settings
  • Clinical Teaching: The Teachable Moment provides strategies for effectively educating students and residents

The modules are accessible here. If you have any questions or comments regarding these teaching aides, please contact Connie Bura at cbura@facs.org.

New Standardized Reference Letter Available for Medical Students Applying to General Surgery Programs

Faculty members are frequently asked by medical students interested in a general surgery residency to write a letter of recommendation for them. Traditionally, there has not been any objective tool available for the surgeon to score the student's performance for the reader. The Board of Governors Surgical Training Workgroup recently developed a standardized letter of recommendation to meet this purpose. It is meant to be used as an adjunct to the traditional personal letter of recommendation. The Workgroup hopes that both the author and the reader of the letter find this new tool beneficial when evaluating candidates for your training program. You can find the letter template here.

Call for Content for ACS/APDS/ASE Resident Prep Curriculum

Through a collaborative effort by ACS, the Association of Program Directors in Surgery (APDS), and the Association for Surgical Education (ASE), a modular preparatory curriculum is being developed to ensure that graduating students have solid skills to step into their new roles as surgery residents. The ACS/APDS/ASE Resident Prep Curriculum is for fourth year medical students planning to enter a surgical specialty.

The Prep Curriculum courses have been alpha- and beta-tested in pilot form at medical schools across the country, and the ACS Division of Education and the Resident Prep Curriculum group recently launched the long-anticipated Curriculum Builder Website. This goal of this resource is to provide a repository of modules available to Prep Course Directors so that they can build or augment their own local courses.

As such, this is an opportunity for you to contribute to this endeavor. We are in need of all shapes and sizes of modules, activities, and other curricula. Do you have something that you have used successfully with your medical students that you would be willing to share? Our ultimate goal is to have a broad collection of peer-reviewed modules available to medical school Prep Course Directors everywhere.

We are now accepting submissions at this time for peer review. Visit this website to learn more about the curriculum’s goals and objectives, and to view a webcast describing the Prep Curriculum.

For submission instructions and agreement guidelines, please contact Krashina Hudson, Administrator of Resident and Medical Student Curricula at the American College of Surgeons, at khudson@facs.org. You may also contact Kyla Terhune, MD, MBA, FACS, at kyla.terhune@vanderbilt.edu.

Want to Stay Up to Date? Subscribe to the ACS Communities!

The online ACS Communities helps ACS members collaborate, share advice, exchange information, and interact with colleagues. Here's how to get started:

  1. Log in at acscommunities.facs.org/home using your ACS username and password. If you have not specified otherwise in the College's records, the default username is your eight-digit member ID and the password is your last name.
  2. Complete your profile. Your current information in the member database is used to create your profile, but please fill in any gaps to take full advantage of ACS Communities. Don't forget to upload a picture of yourself if you don't have one currently in our system so that others can see who you are. If necessary, click "Refresh My Profile" to see your changes.
  3. Select the communities you wish to join:
    • Click on Communities>Browse All Communities.
    • If you are looking to join the YFA community, in the Search box, type in YFA.
    • Click the name of the community you want to participate in.
    • Click “Join community” and click OK in the pop-up window.
    • Select the frequency you want to receive notifications and click “Save.”
  4. Post and share your thoughts with fellow surgeons.

Make sure to download the app for your mobile device. Go to the Apple Store or Google Play and search for Membercentric. Download and install the app. Enter ACS as the organization to participate in. Then, login with your ACS member ID and password.