PM&R Residency Education Curriculum

The Medical College of Wisconsin PMR Residency is committed to developing outstanding clinical and academic physiatrists. The Program is committed to:

  • Supporting the residents. The Residency assists and supports each resident in maintaining his/her well being; assisting in caring for and serving patients and families; and preparing for his/her future.
  • State-of-the-art care and services. The Program assists the PMR Department, healthcare professionals, and others in providing state-of-the-art care and services for patients and families.
  • Knowledge, skills, behavior, attitude. The Residency develops physiatrists that possess the competencies expected of an outstanding new practitioner.
  • Desired in marketplace. The Program develops physiatrists that are desired in today's and tomorrow's marketplaces.
  • Board certification. The Residency develops physiatrists that are able to pass the American Board of PMR general certification examination upon their initial attempt.
  • Passionate professionalism. The Program develops physiatrists that are passionate about helping patients and families; enhancing their knowledge, skills, and careers; and advancing the field of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.
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  Residency Rotation Schedule

View (DOC) a residents' typical schedule.

  On-call and Cross Coverage Responsibilities

The Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation department monitors resident work hours to ensure compliance with all ACGME mandates. We are always in compliance with the 80-hour work week. Residents take call from home covering one of our affiliate hospitals. The call frequency is increased for the PGYII residents and is less frequent for the PGYIII and PGYIV residents. Call is approximately once every 4 – 6 weeks during the PGYII year and every 8-10 weeks during the PGYIII and PGYIV years. Call is always from home. On the weekends, the resident on-call rounds in the hospital and writes notes with the attending on-call.

Each resident has three weeks of vacation during which time the residents cover each other. Services requiring vacation coverage include consult services and inpatient services.

  Didactics and Educational Activities

Three Year Rotating Didactic Series Topics

Physiatric Evaluation & Therapeutics
Pain Management
Practice Management & Gait
Industrial & Occupational Medicine
Joint & Connective Tissue Diseases
Integrative Medicine, Spasticity, Palliative & Aging & Disability

Spinal Cord Injury
Practice Management & Gait
Traumatic Brain Injury
Sports Medicine

Acquired Limb Deficiency
Practice Management & Gait
Orthopaedics & Rheumatology
Neuromuscular Diseases
Cardiopulmonary, Cancer, Burn


Functional Anatomy and Kinesiology
Physical Exam
Introduction to EMG

PGY3 & 4

Advanced EMG
MSK Ultrasound

Other monthly department educational activities

Grand Rounds
noon - 1 p.m., 1st & 5th Friday

Research Grand Rounds
noon - 1 p.m., 3rd Friday

Neurorehab Case Conference
noon - 1 p.m., Thursdays

Journal Club
5 p.m., 3rd Tuesday

Board Review Study Group
5 p.m., 4th Tuesday


Electives in PM&R

Residents are assigned elective rotations in their PGY3 and PGY4 years. The resident gets the opportunity to create their own schedule based on what experience they want to focus on. We have ample faculty here at MCW and within the community that will allow the resident to create a unique training opportunity.

Elective in Italy

We recently were able to create an offsite elective with Dr. Daniela Jurisic, an MCW - PM&R alumnus, Assistant Clinical Professor and Dr. Cristiano Gandini, volunteer faculty who live in Italy. This one-month clinical experience will expose the senior resident (2 per year) to previously unencountered philosophies concerning the treatment of acute and chronic disabling pain, and will encourage the resident to continue critical re-appraisal of his/her practice methods by confrontation with a different cultural setting.

Upon completion of this rotation, the resident should be able to:

  1. Enter into a therapeutic relationship with the patient through discussion and assessment of history and physical findings
  2. Develop a creative treatment plan which is patient-specific, and includes a follow-through phase for maintenance therapy once appropriate physical therapy goals have been achieved.
  3. Discuss both a static and dynamic physical examination with the patient (and the treating physician) in a fashion relevant to the patient’s activities of daily living.
  4. Describe an emotional profile of the patient and discuss how this might interact with the treatment of his/her chronic pain.
  5. Describe common drug interactions based on lectures received from the Clinical Pharmacology specialist and Pain physician, and how these are relevant to treatment plans of chronic pain patients
  6. Demonstrate knowledge of various philosophies on treatment of pain and how to choose the correct treatment profile for the specific patient (patient-tailored pain treatment)
  7. Demonstrate a rudimentary knowledge of anatomy and kinesiology as it relates to exercise therapy practices of: exercise in water, yoga, t’ai chi.
  8. Generate a stress-reduction treatment plan specific to patient needs, articulated in both time and space.
  9. Gain self-awareness and acquire liberty in treatment choices, by expanding the therapeutic armamentarium “outside the drawn lines” but always within scientifically rooted and evidence-based techniques.

We are very excited about this educational opportunity and know that the senior residents able to participate will truly enjoy working with Dr. Jurisic and her colleagues in Pavia and Milan.


MCW PM&R ResearchThe Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation department is committed to expanding the science and practice of rehabilitation. Towards this end we instituted a resident research requirement. Each resident must complete a research project during the three years of his/her residency.

Each resident attends the Research Methods Didactics given by the PM&R Research Director. The didactics is a focused lecture series tailored to develop an individual research project. Residents learn how to write a protocol, complete an Institutional Review Board (IRB) application, and learn the basics of study design, epidemiology, statistics, and research.

All residents are expected to complete a project by the end of their three-year residency. They fulfill this requirement by teaming up with one of our faculty. For all residents we encourage quality science that will result in a national presentation and a peer-reviewed publication.

We have an active research committee that helps the resident find a mentor and develop a project that is within the scope of the residency. During the PGYII year the resident identifies and submits a research topic for discussion to the research committee. They present their ideas at one of our research committee meetings. During their PGYII and PGYIII years the resident works on completing the project. The necessary time is carved out of clinical duties such that the expectations of the project are met with sufficient time to complete the goals of the investigation. Optimally, during the PGYIV year the resident submits an abstract to our national meeting as well as submits a manuscript for publication. Residents are provided the time, resources, and mentorship needed for their research project.

Our Resident Research Day is an annual event during which residents and other trainees present there completed research projects.