This program aims to train generalist laboratory physicians for a wide variety of career opportunities, ranging from small community laboratories to hospital practice in large centers. The program comprises two years of training in anatomical pathology, six months each of training in hematological pathology, medical biochemistry and medical microbiology, and six months of training in a community hospital-like setting. The rotations are generally arranged as twelve-week units.
In the first twelve months of pathology training, it is expected that the resident will be exposed, in addition to Anatomical Pathology, to two of the clinical medicine specialties. Which clinical specialties the resident is exposed to will depend on the number of residents, and whether or not there are residents in the Hematological Pathology and Medical Microbiology training programs. In general, residents will spend an initial six months in Anatomical Pathology and then leave to do one or other of the clinical specialties. After training in Anatomical Pathology and one of the clinical specialties, the residents are encouraged to spend four weeks in a general pathology setting in a community hospital. During this time, the resident is exposed to hospital-based general pathology practice and non-hospital based laboratory practice.
In the initial period of training in Anatomical Pathology, the resident is introduced to autopsy pathology and surgical pathology. During this time, the resident is supervised by staff pathologists, senior residents and pathology assistants. He/she attends the regular divisional rounds in the various subspecialty areas in Anatomical Pathology and in the other areas of clinical pathology that they may not have been exposed to however, there is no "on-hands' experience during this time in these areas. Some of the training in Anatomical Pathology is done at the UAH and some at DLDX , reflecting the different nature of these institutions.
The initial three-month rotations in Hematological Pathology, Medical Biochemistry and Medical Microbiology are designed to give a basic background in these areas. The training in the clinical pathology areas is spent at the University of Alberta Hospital site and at the DLDX base laboratory.
In the second twelve months of pathology training, a total of nine months will be spent in anatomical pathology and three months in the third of the clinical specialties (that which was not covered in the first year). During the second rotation in Anatomical Pathology, while the resident continues to be exposed to the autopsy service and general surgical pathology, there is exposure to the subspecialty areas, principally cytopathology and neuropathology. In general surgical pathology, after an initial re-orientation, the resident is encouraged to prepare surgical pathology reports which will be co-signed, if they area acceptable, by the resident and staff pathologist.
In the third twelve months of pathology training, the resident will spend three months in two of the clinical pathology areas and six months in Anatomical Pathology. The rotations in the clinical pathology specialties are designed to reinforce earlier training in these areas and to enhance it. The training in Anatomical Pathology at this time will include subspecialty rotations including a period at the Medical Examiner's Office.
For the remaining twelve months of training, the resident will spend three months in Anatomical Pathology, three months in the third of the clinical specialties (that which was not covered in the preceding year) and six months in General Pathology. The period in Anatomical Pathology may be spent at the University of Alberta Hospitals or the Royal Alexandra Hospital. Those residents who have not completed their subspecialty training will spend the remaining four to six months of their training at DLDX. This will include some time at the base laboratory and some time in the hospitals within the region that DLDX serves. We place considerable emphasis on the exposure to general pathology obtained in this rotation in the resident's final year. During this time, the resident is very specifically encouraged to integrate the various components of training in which he/she is now competent. The rotation is under the direction of an experienced, practicing general pathologist. In addition to the service component of this rotation, it is expected that the residents will enhance their training in laboratory management and administration.