Emergency Medicine Residency: Rotation Schedule and Descriptions

PGY-1 Rotations
6 1/6 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
HCMC Emergency Medicine HCMC Emergency Medicine / Ultrasound NMMC Emergency Medicine Pediatrics MICU Surgery Toxicology, EMS and Specialty Clinics Cardiology OB/GYN
PGY-2 Rotations
7 1 1 2 1 1
HCMC Emergency Medicine NMMC
Emergency Medicine
Ortho / Resuscitation Neurosurgery Surgery MICU
PGY-3 Rotations
11 1/11 1 1
HCMC Emergency Medicine HCMC Emergency Medicine Pediatrics Cardiology Selectives

About Our Rotations

ED Staff at Computer Closeup Photo

Our residents take an early and active role in patient care and obtain decision-making roles quickly. Within the Emergency Department, residents direct the initial stabilization of all critical patients, including trauma cases, and oversee all critical care. Residents manage all airway interventions, procedural sedation, orthopedic reductions and stabilizations, and other key procedures.

Third year residents put their clinical training, communication skills and team leadership into practice with the year-long "Pit Boss" responsibilities. This invaluable opportunity allows PGY3's to direct patient care during actual Emergency Department operation.

Emergency Medicine Rotation Descriptions


PGY-1 residents provide primary care to all non-critical patients in the Emergency Department. Residents perform a physical examination, take a history, and formulate a treatment plan. PGY-1 residents present every patient to a senior resident or faculty. PGY-1 residents may transition to PGY-2 responsibilities in the last quarter of the academic year, as they demonstrate competency.

This is an inpatient service where residents will be responsible for the initial evaluation of patients admitted to cardiology.

General and Trauma Surgery
At HCMC, general surgery is trauma surgery. Residents take trauma call every fourth night with the surgical team. On the floors, residents care for trauma cases as well as emergent and elective surgery patients. There is ample opportunity for procedures.

EM Resident Rounds 2 Photo

During one of the most highly praised off-service rotations, residents will work on a team with a second year resident and critical care medicine staff. Call is every fourth night.

North Memorial Medical Center Emergency Department
North Memorial is a private, community based Level I Trauma Center in the Twin Cities. This experience provides exposure to a different patient population and system of operation.

On labor and delivery, residents are responsible for managing acute obstetrical concerns in patients greater than 20 weeks gestation, as well as patients in labor through delivery. In clinics, residents assess and treat patients with obstetric and gynecological problems. Residents work as primary caregivers, supervised by senior residents and OB/GYN faculty.

PGY-1 residents rotate for two weeks to pediatric service and two weeks in Team Center C, the pediatric area of the Emergency Department. While on pediatric service, residents manage hospitalized patients on the general pediatric floor, Intensive Care Unit, and evaluate patients in the pediatric clinic. Residents are primary caregivers, supervised by senior residents and pediatric faculty. In the Emergency Department, Emergency Medicine faculty supervise residents.

Toxicology, EMS, Specialty Clinics
This rotation begins with toxicology didactics from the Minnesota Poison Control staff and time spent in the Poison Control Center, both operated by HCMC and providing support for Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. This rotation also provides exposure to multiple aspects of the Hennepin EMS system. An ambulance ride-along is a required part of this rotation. Air medical experiences are available. The rotation also includes time for the completion of a Quality Improvement (QI) project of the resident's choice. The final week provides outpatient experience in several on-campus and specialty clinics.

Bedside ultrasound is a core component of HCMC’s curriculum, allowing residents to utilize the latest equipment and techniques in many situations. This is an emergency department rotation supplemented by a one-week experience working one-on-one with ultrasound faculty to refine scanning technique.


PGY-2 residents exercise more independence and are responsible for primary patient evaluation and managing non-critical and semi-critical patients. PGY-2 residents initiate evaluation and treatment independently, with oversight from senior residents and faculty. PGY-2 residents assist PGY-3 residents in managing critically ill or injured patients. PGY-2 residents perform procedures commensurate with their level of training, under close supervision by PGY-3 residents and faculty. PGY-2 residents may transition to PGY-3 responsibilities in critical cases in the last quarter of the academic year, as they demonstrate competency.

General and Trauma Surgery
Residents will be part of a team comprised of a chief surgical resident and two interns, handling all Emergency Department and hospital consults, as well as evaluating and admitting all trauma patients while on call, and managing SICU patients. Call is every fourth night.

Senior residents on a team will oversee care for critically ill patients, supervise an intern and usually a medical student. Call is every fourth night.

HCMC operates a Level I Trauma Center widely recognized for outstanding neurosurgical care. As a member of the neurosurgery team, residents consult, diagnose and treat neurosurgical emergencies from across the Twin Cities and the state. This experience provides ample opportunity to read spine films and head CT scans with neurosurgical staff. Critical care skills can be expected to grow tremendously.

North Memorial Medical Center Emergency Department
Residents broaden their experience with different patient populations and operating procedures during this rotation. This is a continuation of the first year rotation, with more opportunity to undertake procedures and manage critically ill patients.

Acting as primary emergency orthopedic consultant, residents consult and manage all patients with orthopedic issues, including fractures, disclocations, joint aspirations, tendon repairs, and other injuries. In addition, residents manage critical care patients in the stabilization room two days a week, including airway management. Residents attend a half-day sports medicine clinic experience after Thursday conference.


PGY-3 residents evaluate and manage all patients in their team center within the Emergency Department. PGY-3 residents supervise all patient care delivered by medical students, physician assistants, and junior residents, and provide care directly to a small number of patients. Supervision of care includes obtaining a history and physical examination from the patient, and being involved in all diagnostic and therapeutic management decisions made by junior residents and students. Faculty supervise PGY-3 residents. PGY-3 residents undertake a significant teaching and administrative role within the Emergency Department.  PGY-3 residents teach medical students and junior residents about the patients they manage. Administratively, PGY-3 residents handle the management, patient flow, and triage within the Emergency Department.

Residents act as cardiology consultants for the entire hospital during two weeks of this rotation, and work as cardiology senior residents during the other two weeks. Residents will also participate in an intensive EKG course.

Choose a selective in anesthesiology, community emergency medicine, critical care, EMS, radiology, research, toxicology or other pre-defined subject. Or, create your own selective with program director approval. Three international selectives are available annually, with resident salary and benefits included.