Medical Microbiology Program Information


Medical Microbiology is a stand alone specialty program of The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.  At the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University, it is a small program and does not have more than two or three residents at any given time.

The Medical Microbiology Program works closely with the Division of Infectious Diseases. These two specialties run journal clubs and city-wide rounds jointly.  The program also has formalized arrangements with the Public Health Laboratories, Toronto, and a private laboratory in Mississauga to accept our residents for one to two-month rotations.

The program stresses research. All residents have published results of their research in peer-reviewed journals and/or presented their findings at national and internal meetings. 

Program Director
Dr. Robert Lannigan


Statement of Goals
The overall goal of the Medical Microbiology Residency Training Program is to:
Help residents acquire high level of skills in all aspects of epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis, and management of infections and communicable diseases.

PGY-1 is a broad based clinical year and includes rotations in General Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Emergency, Psychiatry, Infectious Diseases, and Medical Microbiology. The year is designed to provide residents with acquire basic clinical knowledge, and also offer them an opportunity to prepare for MCCQE II examination.

PGY2 - 5:
During these training years, there are four 6-block rotations in Microbiology, which include rotations in Aerobic, Bacteriology, Virology, Anaerobic Bacteriology, Mycology, and Parasitology.  There is a 2-block rotation at the Public Health Laboratories in Toronto to learn special techniques and testing methods that usually are not available elsewhere.  A 2-block rotation is offered at a private laboratory in Toronto or at a community hospital. With each year, residents assume increased responsibility. There is a 2-block Infectious Diseases rotation every year and one of these rotations is a Paediatric Infectious Disease rotation. Residents are also expected to attend Infectious Disease Clinics that include the Outpatients Clinics as well as HIV Clinics and Wound Clinics. In addition, a 2-block rotation with is mandatory to gain experience in outpatient management of infectious diseases. Residents are also encouraged to take a 2-block rotation in Molecular Genetic Laboratory.

Education Program
An Academic Half Day is held weekly, as well as Plate Rounds.  Academic Half Days include didactic teaching and residents participate in presentations.  Journal Club occurs monthly and is held in conjunction with Infectious Diseases. Residents are expected to attend the City-Wide Academic Half Days during PGY-1 and PGY-2. Attendance of Anatomical Pathology Half Days dealing with Clinical Appraisal, Bioethics, Laboratory Management, and Quality Assurance Issues is also mandatory. During University Hospital Internal Medicine rotations, residents are required to attend Wednesday afternoon rounds. These rounds deal with difficult ethical cases from recent admissions. During Victoria Hospital Internal Medicine rotations, residents attend Clinical Appraisal Rounds.  City-Wide Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease Rounds are held once a month.

Residents attend a week-long Annual Medical Microbiology Infectious Diseases Teaching Session and have attended national and International conferences. All residents have completed on-line Infection Control and Quality Assurance courses offered by UBC.  All residents are required to attend one semester long courses in Basic Bacteriology and Virology offered by the Department of Microbiology and Immunology of Schulich Medical School of Medicine and Dentistry.

Up to 12-blocks are available for electives. Electives can be taken in clinical or laboratory specialties. Opportunity also exists to take time off to pursue a research project in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. A resident may also take electives in Anatomical Pathology. Overall, the electives can be tailored to meet the need of trainees, and allow them to achieve their personal goals and help residents to explore career choices.

All residents have completed research projects and presented their findings in national and international conference, and often published results in peer-reviewed journals.

In-training exams are held frequently. Examination can be practical, written, and oral. Residents are also quizzed during daily and weekly Plate Rounds. Weekly Plate Rounds are attended by all Medical Microbiologists, Infectious Disease specialist, and an ID clinical pharmacologist.
Residents participate in annual written examination offered by the Medical Microbiology Residency Program at the University of Toronto.

Information about Medical Microbiology Residency Program

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