Promoting community service in surgery
Award: AMS Phoenix Fellowship (2014)
Co-Sponsor: The University of Ottawa
- Medical education and curricula
- Work environments
The goal of Yvonne’s fellowship was to develop caring surgeons through volunteerism and social outreach and activism during their residency training. Surgical students who have previously volunteered in their communities may be less likely to do so once they enter into formal surgical training. That’s why she promoted community outreach as part of the surgical curriculum. The intent was to engage residents early in their training so that giving back to their communities became part of their professional identities.
Yvonne offered junior surgical trainees a wide range of community outreach activities such as cancer screening, providing warmth and food to the homeless, and sitting on board committees. Students agreed that these activities helped them see their patients in a new light. By going out into the community, they understood patients outside the clinic and outside the operating room.