PGY1

We all know that intern year is one of the toughest years of residency with long hours on wards, all while trying to quell the panic of “I’m the one who actually signs the orders now.” Most FM programs do not have elective time during their intern year. This year is a great time to discover what abortion training opportunities exist. Ask your faculty, senior residents, and even reach out to alumni from your program. Find out how easy or hard it is to access this training, and that will give you a good baseline for where to start. 

 

Your PGY1 abortion training goals: 

  1. Ask faculty and senior residents about access to abortion training, identify allies and faculty mentors

  2. Meet with your program director about your intentions about accessing abortion training. Ask specifically about your program’s ability to do away rotations at a non-residency affiliated site, and what the process is to establish that affiliation. Those affiliations are legal agreements and can sometimes take months to go through, therefore it is best to know what you are working with from the beginning. Also, ask if the residency insurance covers procedures at an external site that does abortions and contraception. If the answer is no, do not fear! We will give you information about getting insurance coverage see Residency-Specific Logistics tab above. 

  3. If you have the ability to do so, request your PGY2 elective month in the second half of the year. that will give you more time to apply to different organizations for hands-on training.

  4. Complete self-learning modules on abortion care so that you are establishing a solid foundation for when you do your elective. Consider completing TEACH’s Early Abortion Training Curriculum or their Abortion Pill CME. You can also access a variety of modules and presentations at Innovating Education in Reproductive Health

  5. Log everything. IUDs insertions and removals, vaginal deliveries, postpartum hemorrhages, EMBs, Colposcopies, Implant insertions and removals, foley bulb placements, miscarriage management, D&Cs, etc. The more you can objectively show that you have the skills necessary to learn to provide abortions, the smoother the process will be for you. Your residency should already be using a tool to help you log procedures, so utilize that.

  6. Become an advocate: Join your local Reproductive Health Access Project Cluster, connect with other likeminded individuals, write Op-eds supporting abortion access and training for family medicine residents, and join the Reproductive Health Member Interest Group through the AAFP

PGY2 & PGY3

Depending on how your residency is structured, you may have the opportunity to do at least one if not multiple away electives. If your program or town does not already offer a high-volume abortion training experience, reach out to one of the following organizations to explore availability and apply for an away elective. All have various applications and availability - reach out as soon as possible as you become a PGY2 or PGY3 since availability is limited. 

 

Your PGY2 & PGY3 abortion training goals: 

  1. As soon as you decide you would like to do an abortion training specific elective, email the above programs to set up a meeting to discuss your application and goals. They will help you decide which program is the right fit for you.

  2. Apply to the program(s) of your choice, as soon as you can

  3. Once you’ve been accepted and have a clinic location, this is where the difficult logistical matters come into play. You will need to provide a number of documents to the clinic which vary by location and type of clinic. These documents may include: legal agreements between your residency program and the clinic, proof of malpractice insurance coverage (either covered by your residency or proof of purchase separately) and licensure. Let the clinics/programs guide you in this process, as they are the experts here. 

  4. Continue to log all applicable procedures including surgical and medical abortions, IUDs insertions and removals, vaginal deliveries, postpartum hemorrhages, EMBs, Colposcopies, Implant insertions and removals, foley bulb placements, miscarriage management, and D&Cs. 

  5. Continue to be an advocate: Join your local Reproductive Health Access Project Cluster, connect with other likeminded individuals, write Op-eds supporting abortion access and training for family medicine residents, and join the Reproductive Health Member Interest Group through the AAFP website.