Altru Family Medicine Residency


The 1999 ACGME Outcome Project introduced six domains on which residency programs would focus to improve education and assessment - Patient Care, Medical Knowledge, Professionalism, Systems-based Practice, Practice-based Learning and Improvement and Interpersonal and Communications Skills.  Objective assessments of the six core competency areas are mapped to the Family Medicine milestones provided by the ACGME, as a progressive assessment of resident performance.

Currently, each program is expected to demonstrate assessment tools providing valid evidence that its residents are achieving these competency-based objectives and that the program is effective in preparing residents for practice.

Competency Description

Patient Care  
Ability to provide compassionate, appropriate and effective patient care for promotion of health, prevention of illness, treatment of disease and end-of-life care.  Residents are expected to:

  • Communicate effectively and demonstrate caring and respectful behavior when interacting with patients and their families
  • Gather essential and accurate information about their patients
  • Make informed decisions about diagnostic and therapeutic interventions based on patient information and preferences, up-to-date scientific evidence and clinical judgment
  • Develop and carry out patient management plans
  • Counsel and educate patients and their families
  • Use information technology to support patient care decisions and patient education
  • Perform all medical and invasive procedures considered essential for the area of practice competently
  • Provide health care services aimed at maintaining health or preventing health problems
  • Work with health care professionals, including those from other disciplines, to provide patient-focused care 

Medical Knowledge  
Knowledge of established and evolving biomedical, clinical and social sciences, as well as application of this knowledge to patient care and education of others. Residents are expected to:

  • Demonstrate an investigatory and analytic approach to clinical situations
  • Know and apply the basic and clinical sciences appropriate to their discipline 

Practice-Based Learning and Improvement  
Ability to use scientific methods and evidence to investigate, evaluate and improve patient care practices. Residents are expected to:

  • Analyze practice experience and perform practice-based improvement activities using a systematic methodology
  • Locate, appraise and assimilate evidence from scientific studies related to their patients' health problems
  • Obtain and use information about their own population of patients and the larger population from which their patients are drawn
  • Apply knowledge of study designs and statistical methods to the appraisal of clinical studies and other information on diagnostic and therapeutic effectiveness
  • Use information technology to manage information, access online medical information and support their own education
  • Facilitate the learning of students and other health care professionals 

Interpersonal and Communication Skills  
Demonstration of interpersonal and communication skills that enable them to establish and maintain professional relationships with patients, families, and other members of health care teams. Residents are expected to:

  • Create and sustain a therapeutic and ethical relationship with patients
  • Use listening skills and elicit and provide information using nonverbal, explanatory, questioning and writing skills
  • Work effectively with others as a member or leader of a health care team or other professional group 

Residents must demonstrate behavior that reflects a commitment to continuous professional development, ethical practice, an understanding and sensitivity to diversity and a responsible attitude toward their patients, profession and society. Residents are expected to:

  • Demonstrate respect, compassion and integrity
  • Demonstrate a responsiveness to the needs of patients and society that supersedes self-interest; accountability to patients, society and the profession 
  • Demonstrate a commitment to excellence and ongoing professional development
  • Demonstrate a commitment to ethical principles pertaining to provision or withholding of care, confidentiality of patient information, informed consent and business practices
  • Demonstrate sensitivity and responsiveness to patients' culture, age, gender and disabilities

Systems-Based Practice  
Demonstration of an understanding of context and delivery systems in which health care is provided, and the ability to apply this to optimize health care. Residents are expected to:

  • Understand how their patient care and other professional practices affect other health care professionals, the health care organization and the larger society, as well as how these elements of the system affect their own practice
  • Know how types of medical practice and delivery systems differ, including methods of controlling health care costs and allocating resources
  • Practice cost-effective health care and resource allocation that does not compromise quality of care
  • Advocate for quality patient care and assist patients in dealing with system complexities
  • Know how to partner with health care managers and health care providers to assess, coordinate and improve health care and know how these activities can affect system performance