Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
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General Information about the Residency Program

Overview of the Residency Program

The medical physics residency program in radiation oncology is a comprehensive two-year program designed to educate and train physicists in all aspects of modern radiation oncology physics. The residency program provides didactic instruction in medical physics, anatomy and radiation biology, and clinical experience in a wide spectrum of clinical physics problems. An important goal of the program is to prepare residents for the certification exams offered by the American Board of Radiology and for success as independent radiation oncology physicists.

The program is CAMPEP accredited as of January 1, 2018.

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General Didactic Information

Medical physics residents are responsible for presenting a didactic lecture on a selected topic in a formal slide presentation. The topics include review of the AAPM Task Group (TG) reports, review of literature and the updates of research projects. Seminars are held on a weekly basis. They consist of approximately equal numbers of technical (i.e., a review of an AAPM task group report) and clinical (i.e., a review of a cancer treatment site) talks.

In addition, residents participate in a Multidisciplinary Conference during which they present, jointly with a medical resident, a comprehensive overview of a major cancer site, including its epidemiology and etiology, presentation and diagnosis, staging, treatment options and potential complications, and outlook and survival statistics. The Multidisciplinary Conference takes place on approximately a monthly basis, and is part of the Cooperation Program between the medical physics and radiation oncology training programs.

All didactic activities are considered protected educational time for medical physics residents. Residents are also required to participate in all department conferences in which the physics staff is expected to attend (e.g., chart rounds, Morbidity and Mortality Conference).

General Rotation Information

The clinical component of the program consists of nine rotations in 2 years, and provides comprehensive training in all aspects of radiation oncology physics. The nine rotations are:

  1. External Beam Rotation I: Basic Treatment Planning
  2. External Beam Rotation II: Advanced Treatment Planning
  3. Rotation III: Imaging
  4. External Beam Rotation IV: Beam Data, QA&QC, Radiation Safety
  5. Rotation V: Brachytherapy and Special Procedures
  6. External Beam Rotation VI: Gamma Knife, Cyberknife, Brachytherapy Rotation at Pennsylvania Hospital
  7. Rotation VII: Clinical Practicum at PCAM
  8. Rotation VIII: Clinical Practicum at Network
  9. Rotation IX: Proton Rotation

For each clinical rotation the resident is closely supervised by an assigned member of the medical physics staff and ends with an oral examination. At the end of each year there is a written exam.



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