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UB medical school welcomes 190 new physicians to WNY

The new residents pose for a group photo after the long white coat ceremony. Photo: Douglas Levere

By ELLEN GOLDBAUM

Published June 29, 2017

“The long white coat is not only a symbol of the profession, but it also symbolizes the trust patients place in their physicians and the responsibility to act professionally while serving patients and the public.”
Roseanne Berger, senior associate dean for graduate medical education
Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

One hundred and ninety newly minted MDs marked a critical milestone in their professional lives earlier this week when they became medical residents of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

After graduation from medical school, medical residents are “matched” with a residency program, where they train in a medical or surgical specialty from three to seven years. The residents who took part in the “long white coat” ceremony on June 27 in the Center for Tomorrow chose to start their careers as physicians in Buffalo at UB. They will provide patient care under the supervision of UB medical school faculty in Western New York’s hospitals and clinics.

“The long white coat is not only a symbol of the profession, but it also symbolizes the trust patients place in their physicians and the responsibility to act professionally while serving patients and the public,” says Roseanne Berger, senior associate dean for graduate medical education in the medical school and associate professor of family medicine.

To celebrate the transition, UB’s newest medical residents donned the long white coats that indicate they have graduated from medical school, leaving behind the short white coats they received when they entered medical school.   

At the ceremony, medical residents recited the Hippocratic Oath and the UB Resident Code of Conduct. The ceremony took place on Education Day, during which residents received information on topics ranging from health issues in Buffalo’s population and communication and cultural issues to patient privacy, quality improvement and safety. There also was a focus on resident well-being, highlighting institutional support resources and advice from current residents.

It was part of UB’s five-day medical resident orientation, which includes background on UB, the Western New York community, its population and its health care systems. During orientation, residents visited UB-affiliated teaching hospitals, interacted with program faculty and, in some cases, worked with UB’s Clinical Competency Center to assess interactions, with actors playing patients. Before arriving on campus, residents completed online tutorials, including modules on addiction, pain medicine and safe prescribing practices.    

This year’s class of residents of 81 women and 109 men includes 120 U.S. citizens and 70 citizens of at least 17 other countries, including 24 from Canada, nine from Pakistan and six from India.

Forty of the new residents are UB alumni — 32 graduated from the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and eight graduated from the School of Dental Medicine.

The long white coat ceremony was planned in collaboration with UB’s Richard Sarkin/Emeritus Faculty Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, which launched the tradition of holding white coat ceremonies in the 1990s to symbolize that humanism remains at the core of all medical care. UB is one of only 14 medical residency programs in the U.S. that is home to a residency chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society.