Surgical Critical Care Leave Policy

Policy governing leave during fellowship training for surgeons applying for initial board certification in surgical critical care.
This leave policy allows for flexible caregiver and parental leave, and is in accordance with the policy guidelines established by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS).

General Requirements

Applicants for surgical critical care certification must have acquired no fewer than 48 weeks of full-time clinical activity in the year (12 months) of surgical critical care training. The remaining four (4) weeks of the year are considered non-clinical time that may be used for any purpose, such as vacation, conferences, interviews, etc.

ABS Family Leave Policy

The ABS acknowledges the need to take time away from training for certain significant life events. Therefore, effective as of the 2022-2023 academic year and thereafter, as allowed by their programs, trainees may take up to an additional two (2) weeks of documented leave to care for a new child, whether for the birth, the adoption, or placement of a child in foster care; to care for a seriously ill family member (partner, child, or parent); to grieve the loss of a family member (partner, child, or parent); or to recover from the trainee’s own serious illness. This policy is not retroactive and does not apply to leave taken prior to the 2022-2023 academic year.

The ABS will accept 46 weeks of full-time clinical activity in the year of surgical critical care training while maintaining admissibility to the ABS initial certification examination process.

Note: This is an ABS policy only and should not be confused with family leave as permitted by the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). No approval is needed for this option if taken as outlined.

Arrangements beyond the standard leave described above require prior written approval from the ABS. Such requests may only be made by the program director.

Part-Time Option

At the discretion of the program director, ACGME-accredited surgical critical care training may be completed over two consecutive years on a part-time basis. The completed training must be equal to 48 weeks of full-time clinical activity.

Updated: June 2022

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