Pediatric resident training in telephone management: a survey of training programs in the United States.

P. R. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Although practicing pediatricians spend a major portion of each day in the management of acute illness via telephone, information concerning instructional programs in telephone management is scanty. A 34-item questionnaire was mailed to the 242 program directors of US training programs to obtain information on how telephone calls are handled in pediatric training programs and how pediatric house officers are trained in telephone management. Fifty-five percent of programs have a formalized system for handling telephone calls. One half of programs have a policy on who can answer telephone calls; 11% stated that only physicians are permitted to handle calls. Residents handle an average of 19 calls per day (39% of the total calls received). Only 51% of programs document any telephone calls and only 19% document all calls. Despite the volume of calls handled by pediatric residents, only 45% of training programs offer specific training in telephone management. The most common instructional method is lecturing. Less than one third of programs have a review system or periodically audit telephone calls. Programs that offer resident training in telephone management are significantly more likely to have a system for handling calls, to document calls, and to have a review system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)822-825
Number of pages4
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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