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Certified Athletic Training Residency Program Description

The Prisma Health Athletic Training Residency Program provides athletic trainers a broad clinical experience within 12 months (54 weeks). The athletic training residents will start in June and will conclude the following June. The athletic training resident will rotate between surgeons, non-operative physicians, and other health care professionals within their twelve months of residency.

Our rotations are mentorship-based, preceptor-lead educational experiences with physicians and other health care professionals on a one-on-one basis. Residents will participate in patient care in the office and in field settings, performing physical examinations and assisting in surgery.

Our rotations include:

  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Shoulder/elbow
  • Elective

Residents will be responsible for appropriate decision-making in terms of the patient/athlete problem and the algorithmic approach to patient/athlete care. Residents will abide by the operating room skills curriculum and learn operating room skills. The program will provide a multifaceted learning experience in musculoskeletal evaluation and injury diagnosis in order to lead in a variety of clinical, surgical and educational settings.

Clinical responsibilities

The Prisma Health Athletic Training Residency Program allows athletic trainers to work in a variety of clinical settings. A majority of the time will be spent as an athletic trainer in an orthopedic office, and a small amount of time will be spent as an outreach athletic trainer. The responsibilities of each are included below.

  • A.  Athletic trainer in the orthopedic clinic
    • The athletic trainer responsibilities will include working side by side in clinic with surgeons, non-operative physicians and other healthcare professionals. The job duties of each practice will differ according to the specialty of the physician or healthcare professional. The athletic training resident will also be responsible for understanding radiological images and learning the techniques of bracing and casting. Some of the typical job duties that the athletic training resident will perform are:
      • Obtaining the patient’s medical history
      • Performing physical examinations
      • Making prospective decisions about treatment and then presenting to the physician
  • B. Athletic trainer in surgery
    • The ATR will complete surgical scrub training during orientation. They will be expected to demonstrate operating room skills such as prepping and draping, sterilization techniques and knowledge of surgical instruments.
  • C. Outreach athletic trainer
    • The outreach athletic trainer will provide athletic training services to local colleges, high schools or professional athletes. The athletic training resident will perform a wide variety of duties requiring specific knowledge of athletic training. Some duties and responsibilities include but are not limited to assessment of injuries, education of athletes and the community in the areas of sports injury prevention and care, providing coverage to practice and events, completing proper documentation and record keeping, communicating effectively with physicians, coaches and parents and performing duties as assigned.

Education program

Organized educational opportunities are critical for providing residents with evidence-based practices and furthering their critical thinking skills. There are many ways in which the Prisma Health Athletic Training Residency Program allows its residents to stay involved in current research, evaluation skills and musculoskeletal diagnosis in orthopedics.

Prisma Health uses our Athletic Training Residency Program curriculum and the ATC resident schedule to plan the didactic and clinical education to focus on musculoskeletal diagnosis and evaluation. The first month is orientation. During orientation, we expose each resident to important fundamentals of the residency. Some of the time is spent on areas that allow residents to be successful in their pursuit of an athletic trainer in the clinical setting.

Our curriculum and schedule outlines didactic opportunities as well. We have seven planned and defined didactic opportunities to include: orthopedic morning conference, sports medicine didactic lectures, pre-surgery readings, monthly athletic training education meetings, sports medicine morning lecture, radiology training, and anatomy lab.

  • Orthopedic morning conference discusses trauma presentation, pre-operative triage, pre-operative evaluation, and operative intervention.
  • We require our residents to attend the sports medicine didactics when the lectures focus on musculoskeletal evaluation and diagnosis.
  • Pre-surgery readings allow our residents to research orthopedic cases for the next day, including reviewing diagnostic tests and office notes, and reading articles related to the specific diagnoses, treatment options, and the specific surgical technique. This allows them to prepare for questions that preceptors may ask them during surgeries.
  • Monthly athletic training education meetings focuses on topics that emphasize musculoskeletal evaluation and diagnosis.
  • Sports medicine morning lectures take place every other week and are presented by one of our orthopedic surgeons focusing on musculoskeletal diagnosis and evaluation.
  • The radiology didactic allows residents to spend time with a musculoskeletal radiologist reviewing images to strengthen their musculoskeletal diagnosis and evaluation skills.
  • For three months our residents attend anatomy lab/lectures presented by the Prisma Health/USC School of Medicine orthopedic surgery residency program. The lab/lectures focus on specific areas of the body to enhance musculoskeletal evaluation and diagnosis skills.
  • Residents attend cadaver lab to help them identify structures and surgical techniques that will help them expand their ability to evaluate and diagnose orthopedic injuries.