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Research & Scholarly Activity 

Scholarly Activity Overview

All of our residents participate in scholarly activities during their residency here at Piedmont Macon. Some residents may come into our programs with many different ideas for a research project, while others may not know exactly what they want to do just yet. Both scenarios are perfectly fine, and as research coordinator, my job is to assist both types of residents and any others that fall somewhere in between. I track resident scholarly activity progress and completion and, depending on the level of need, assist with creating ideas for projects, finding faculty mentors, creating project designs, obtaining appropriate approvals, overcoming obstacles, manuscript edits, manuscript development, and submissions for publication. Before beginning any scholarly activity, residents complete the CITI Program research, ethics, and compliance training and must remain current until they graduate.

Various photos of GME residents

Residents can then choose a case report, a quality improvement project, original research project, literature review, or curriculum series as a category for their project, but the focus of the project is individualized, since residents are free to choose the topic. The ultimate goal is for each resident to present on Resident Research Day at least once during his or her residency here. Residents are also encouraged to present their work at external conferences and/or publish their manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals. Our residents have placed at the Georgia Chapter ACP and National ACP Poster Competition two years in a row and have presented at the APA Annual Conference.

Publications from 2021 can be found under the recent publications section. Other resources available to our residents include IRB support through Piedmont, librarians and library resources from both Piedmont and Mercer University School of Medicine, biostatisticians from Mercer University School of Medicine, and the opportunity for collaboration with Mercer University faculty and students.


Resident Research Day

Every year in May, our Piedmont Macon GME program gives the residents an opportunity to show off some of the great scholarly activity projects they have completed over the last year during our Resident Research Day. This year, we had 9 podium presentations and 12 poster presentations. These presentations were judged on the quality of the project and the presentation itself. Our 1st place winners were M. Owesh Contractor, MD and Rishim Jayswal, MD for their case report on Malignant Cerebral Edema Following Intrathecal Administration of a Non-ionic, Low-osmolar, Iodinated Contrast Agent.

Second place was awarded to Nicholas James, MD and Chukwuemeka Obi, MD for their case report on Disseminated Cryptococcus in an Immunocompetent Patient.

Finally, Brian Birdsong, MD and Darya Savel, MD won 3rd place with their case report on Morgellons’s Disease. We were very thankful to be able to have our Research Day 2021 in person, and it was very well attended by hospital staff, attending physicians, Mercer University faculty, and of course, our residents. We are already making plans for next year’s research day in early May 2022! In the meantime, though, we also recognize those residents and faculty mentors who have demonstrated exceptional scholarly work every quarter.

Journal Club

One of the ways we help residents review the foundations of evidence-based medicine and explore research design is through regular journal club sessions. Each program has dedicated journal club sessions each month for residents to choose a research article and present it to their peers and faculty. The goal of the journal club is to not only review recent or seminal research and its contribution to medicine, but also to learn how to objectively analyze the study design and results. Residents are encouraged to interact with the audience, and this gives them an opportunity to practice professional presentations like those that they would give at Resident Research Day or other external conferences. The residents are also asked to cover a teaching point they might see on the board exam, thereby allowing for additional review of important concepts and providing another teaching experience in a classroom setting. As Research Coordinator, I can assist with the evaluation of the journal article, research design and stats review, and/or feedback on the presentation beforehand.

2021 Publications

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