Emergency Medicine

Message from the Chiefs

Congratulations on choosing a career in Emergency Medicine! This specialty will provide you with novel clinical challenges, a range of interesting pathology, and rewarding, fast-paced shifts. Importantly, a career in Emergency Medicine gives you plenty of time for a life outside of medicine.

To achieve this, you need a residency program that is academically strong, clinically diverse, and personally supportive. As you are considering a program to call home for the next three to four years, we want to share with you what makes the Medical College of Wisconsin a great destination for Emergency Medicine training.

Below we've compiled the top 10 reasons to train here in Milwaukee. Come visit us for a first-hand look at how happy we are with our residency experience. We look forward to meeting you on your visit!

#10 – Diverse Patient Population

Froedtert and Children's hospitals see a combined volume of more than 130,000 patients per year. Both are quaternary care centers which serve as major referral centers for patients across the country. The hospitals are located in a nearby suburb of Milwaukee drawing patients from the city as well as surrounding suburbs and rural areas. Additionally, our institution was previously the "county hospital" for Milwaukee County, so we care for a large underserved population. Our adult Emergency Department sees many sick patients, with a 30% admission rate. Additionally, our residents obtain community experience at the Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Center and Froedtert Menomonee Falls Hospital.

#9 – Research Opportunities

Our department is among one of the top 20 NIH funded Emergency Medicine departments in the country and is part of three major research networks: ROC, NETT, and PECARN. The Medical College of Wisconsin and Children's Hospital boast numerous NIH funded projects. Our Emergency Department faculty are leaders in the field of cardiac arrest, disaster medicine, and pediatric trauma. The opportunities for resident scholarly research are limitless. The required scholarly project ranges from a poster presentation, a published paper, to a presentation at a national conference.

#8 – Robust Ultrasound Curriculum

We have three Sonosite ultrasound machines in the department and two months of dedicated ultrasound didactics in our curriculum. There are also ultrasound machines at the VA, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, and Froedtert Menomonee Falls. Our faculty are credentialed in emergency ultrasound use, and we have three fellowship-trained attendings. There is now an ultrasound fellowship here at MCW, which will expand opportunities for ultrasound learning as a resident.

#7 – Strong Academic Foundation

Founded in 1978 we are one of the original Emergency Medicine residency programs and our program has an unbeatable 100% Emergency Medicine written boards pass rate thanks to our rigorous education curriculum, which includes:

  • Orientation Month – Interns are brought up to speed during their first month which is spent in procedure workshops, doing EMS ride-alongs, learning work-ups of common ED complaints, a few clinical shifts, and settling into our program and the great city of Milwaukee.
  • Department Conference – Each week we have five hours of high quality, high yield core Emergency Medicine content. These include adult and pediatric simulations, guest lecturers, panel discussions, small group discussions, and oral boards practice. There are several rotating didactic curriculums in the areas of trauma, pediatrics, wellness, US, palliative care, research, and patient safety to provide residents with both a diverse and comprehensive residency education.
  • Board Review Curriculum – We use Emergency Medicine Foundations, a longitudinal reading curriculum along with a subscription to EM Coach, an online board review question bank that also has short video lectures and online “textbook chapters”. These provide exposure to both bread and butter Emergency Medicine as well as rare pathology to provide a solid knowledge base for both clinical practice and the written board exam.
  • Mock Oral Boards – Oral boards are simulated on an annual basis, as well as frequently in our Department Conference. Frequent exposure to doing cases and watching your peers do cases ensures confidence when it comes time to become board-certified in Emergency Medicine.
  • Journal Club – held quarterly at a faculty member's house

#6 – Nationally Recognized EMS

Milwaukee's EMS system is consistently rated as one of the best in the nation thanks to ground-breaking research by our Emergency Medicine faculty sub-specialized in EMS. As second and third year residents, we serve as medical control for Milwaukee County EMS. These “Base Calls” are a fantastic opportunity for us that we have found makes us experts at ACLS and pre-hospital medicine. We offer an opportunity to be a full crew member and flight physician with “Flight For Life”, our regional air medical transport service. We also offer an EMS fellowship.

#5 – Children's Hospital of Wisconsin

Parents' Magazine ranked Children's Wisconsin the "4th Best Pediatric Hospital" and our Pediatric Emergency Department was ranked "3rd Best in the Nation" in 2013. The acuity is high and attendings are experts in their field. With over 65,000 annual ED visits, and multiple CW shifts each month, few residency programs will give you such a strong foundation in Pediatric Emergency Medicine.

#4 – Level 1 Trauma

Froedtert and Children's Wisconsin are Level 1 Trauma Centers and at Froedtert, our residents run (“Captain”) the traumas during their third year (alternating weekly with the trauma senior) and our second-year residents are responsible for all trauma airways. They also assess and primarily care for trauma patients as well. We have a great relationship with our trauma surgeons, some of whom literally wrote the book on ATLS.

#3 – Wellness Committee

Our residency program leadership recognize the stress, both professional and personal, that comes with a career in Emergency Medicine. We have a dedicated wellness committee that schedules rejuvenating retreats, fun resident activities outside the hospital, and helpful lectures that focus on thriving in our role as Emergency Physicians.

#2 – Milwaukee, the "Midwest's Best Kept Secret"

While smaller than Chicago, Milwaukee has many of the same amenities as any large city, such as an up-and-coming arts scene, one of the largest music festivals in the world (Summerfest), nationally renowned parks, miles of beautiful beaches on Lake Michigan, and professional sports teams (Brewers, Bucks, and the Packers up in Green Bay). Best of all, it has very little traffic, a great cost of living, diverse nightlife, and great bike trails. The Medical College of Wisconsin has one of the most generous stipends of any residency in the country, which, combined with a low cost of living, gives great flexibility with your finances.

#1 – The BEST People

The number one asset to our program is the people behind it. Our attendings are truly all amazing teachers and treat us like colleagues from day one. Our nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and Emergency Medicine-trained pharmacists are top notch. We guarantee you won't find a more caring and supportive staff anywhere in the country. When graduation nears, we have an expansive network of our graduates all over the country which makes landing your dream job easier, even in some of the most competitive markets.

Paul Benz, MD

Medical Student Education Programs and Evaluation

Sela Sherr, MD

Scheduling and Work Environment

Kristin Lipanot, MD

Wellness Chief

Thomas Johnson, DO

GME Education Programs and Evaluation