Transitional Year Residency Program - Iowa Methodist Medical Center
Message from the Program Director
Welcome to the Transitional Year Residency Program at Iowa Methodist Medical Center in Des Moines. The residency program was established in 1991 and over 120 residents have completed training in the program as of 2022.
The Transitional Year Residency Program is fully accredited with commendation, and we train four residents per year. Our residents have proceeded on to complete subsequent categorical residency training at top programs in specialties such as anesthesiology, dermatology, diagnostic radiology, ophthalmology, physical medicine and rehabilitation and radiation oncology.
Our program has developed a solid reputation for providing excellent teaching, superb clinical training, and superior resident achievement. Surveys of our graduates and of the categorical program directors who subsequently train our graduates confirm the outstanding training available here. We hope you find the many resources on this website helpful, but please don't hesitate to contact us with your questions or comments.
Patrick J. Shaeffer, MD
About Our Program
The Transitional Year Residency Program provides direct experience in a broad range of medical disciplines, designed to prepare you for your future categorical training or clarify long-term educational goals.
Our program is designed for residents who have chosen a career specialty for which the Transitional Year Residency fulfills a prerequisite.
Our fully accredited program accepts four residents per year. Established in 1991, over 110 residents have completed the program and universally passed their Step 3 examinations and have emerged well prepared to enter the categorical training program of their choice.
The year-long program provides excellent training experience in the diagnosis and treatment of common and unique medical disorders, building a solid foundation in the development of:
- Clinical judgment
- Clinical skills
- Humanistic qualities
- Professional attitudes
The level of patient care responsibility of the transitional year resident is equal to R-1s in our other programs, which include general surgery, pediatrics, internal medicine, family medicine and psychiatry.
Residents of the Transitional Year program attend a variety of conferences including:
- Check-in rounds
- Morning reports
- Daily noon conferences
- Morbidity and mortality conferences
- Weekly grand rounds
Transitional Year residents will enjoy a close working relationship with fellow residents, teaching faculty, the program director and attending physicians, who emphasize and value quality patient care and training and professional development.
The Iowa Methodist Medical Center Transitional Year Residency Program will provide high quality individualized clinical training with an emphasis on wellness and experiential learning in patient safety and quality improvement.
This training will provide a solid clinical foundation for our residents who subsequently enter a variety of specialty residency programs.
- Individualized Training / Curriculum Development
- Experiential Learning in Patient Safety and Quality Improvement
- Residents Learn to Practice High Value Care
- Graduates Well Prepared for Subsequent Categorical Training
- Residents Learn and Begin to Practice Personal Wellness Strategies
Blank Children's Hospital Pediatric Rotation Director
IMMC Surgery Rotation Director
VAMC Inpatient IM Rotation Director
Broadlawns Medical Center Inpatient IM Rotation Director
IMMC Adult ER Rotation Director
IMMC Ambulatory IM Rotation Director
IMMC Inpatient IM Rotation Director
Medical School: University of Iowa
After Residency: Dermatology – University of Iowa
Medical School: University of Iowa
After Residency: Dermatology – University of Iowa
Medical School: University of Iowa
After Residency: Dermatology – University of Missouri
Medical School: University of Iowa
After Residency: Radiation Oncology – Cleveland Clinic
The Transitional Year Residency Program provides an excellent combination of required experiences and elective rotations that allow residents to tailor the curriculum to meet their needs. All residents will develop the fundamental clinical skills that are the core of transitional year residency training.
Residents complete three inpatient general medicine rotations at Iowa Methodist medical center and our two affiliated teaching hospitals: Broadlawns Medical Center and the VA Medical Center. These experiences provide residents with an outstanding variety of patient pathology with excellent senior resident supervision and strong faculty teaching. Daily noon conferences, weekly grand rounds conferences, and monthly journal club and morbidity and mortality conferences assure excellent didactics during these experiences.
On call experience:
- Veterans Affairs Medical Center: 12-hour weekend day shift, three weekends during the block
- Broadlawns Medical Center: No nights but mixture of short and long (into evening) call days during the week round, one weekend day each weekend during block
- Iowa Methodist Medical Center: 12-hour weekend day shift each weekend during the block
Residents complete a surgery rotation at Iowa Methodist Medical Center, that includes both trauma and general surgery components. The general surgery component provides operative experience with an excellent variety of surgeries and surgical pathology available. The trauma surgery component provides an opportunity to evaluate, triage, stabilize and manage a wide variety of patients presenting after major trauma to Iowa Methodist's Level 1 Trauma Center.
On call experience: No overnight call. Rounds two weekends during the block.
Residents work in the Medical ICU at Iowa Methodist Medical Center, under the direction of a board-certified critical care teaching faculty. The team consists of a senior IM resident and a junior IM resident and one senior medical student. Extensive procedural experience is provided. A variety of patients with multisystem disorders and patients requiring mechanical ventilation and hemodynamic support will be encountered.
On call experience: No overnight call. Rounds one weekend day each weekend during the block.
TY Residents have a choice for one of their inpatient training blocks. They can choose from one of the four-week blocks described below:
- Inpatient Pediatrics
TY Residents will work on one of two inpatient teaching teams at Blank Children’s Hospital caring for patients with a wide variety of general and specialty pediatric concerns.
- Inpatient Pulmonary Medicine
TY residents will work on the inpatient pulmonary medicine teaching service directed by the Pulmonary-Critical Care faculty at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. Residents will care for patients with a wide variety of pulmonary concerns and there are often opportunities for procedures, like thoracentesis and chest tube placement.
- Inpatient General Medicine at Broadlawns Medical Center
TY residents can elect to complete another inpatient medicine rotation at Broadlawns working with a very diverse patient population. They will work on one of the two inpatient teams which are each led by one of the hospitalist internal medicine faculty members at Broadlawns.
- Inpatient General Medicine at Des Moines VA Medical Center
TY residents can elect to complete another inpatient medicine rotation at the VA caring for veterans. They will work on one of the three inpatient teams which are each led by one of the hospitalist internal medicine faculty members at the VA.
- ICU Medicine at Iowa Methodist Medical Center
TY residents can elect to complete another Medical ICU rotation at IMMC on a team led by one of the Pulmonary-Critical Care teaching faculty. Patients with a wide variety of critical care concerns are cared for on the service and there are opportunities to complete bedside ultrasound studies and a variety of invasive procedures.
- Colorectal Surgery at Iowa Methodist Medical Center
TY residents will work on the Colorectal Teaching Service at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. The service consists of a senior surgery resident and a surgery intern working with the four colorectal surgery teaching faculty. There will be extensive opportunities to participate in surgeries and to manage pre-operative evaluation and post-operative care of patients.
Residents work in the outpatient clinics with core ambulatory medicine faculty seeing a wide variety of patients. Patients presenting for health maintenance, minor acute concerns and more major acute problems will be seen during the month.
Residents work in the emergency room of the very busy Level 1 Trauma Center at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. Residents work 16 ten-hour shifts during this rotation and participate in the triage, evaluation and treatment of patients presenting with a variety of acute medical and surgical concerns. The rotation includes seeing patients with a wide variety of acute medical and surgical concerns, patients presenting after minor trauma (lacerations, strains, fractures, etc.) and patients suffering more serious trauma-related injuries.
Residents will work five nights per week during the night medicine rotation under the direct supervision of the hospitalist teaching faculty at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. Responsibilities include providing coverage for patients previously admitted to the inpatient medicine teaching services at Iowa Methodist while also evaluating and treating new patients requiring overnight admission to one of the three inpatient teaching services.
- Adolescent Medicine: Residents will participate in a variety of outpatient adolescent medicine clinic experiences, including Blank Children’s Hospital adolescent clinic, Spectrum outpatient clinic, Polk County Public Health Department and other community-based programs including school-based clinics and Planned Parenthood clinics.
- Ambulatory Pediatrics: Residents will participate in outpatient pediatric clinics in the Blank Children’s Clinic area, seeing patients with a wide variety of concerns. There will be opportunities to complete well child exams and school physical exams in addition to seeing patients presenting with a variety of acute concerns.
Rotation Directors: Eric Haugen, MD and Andrew Sims, DO
- Anesthesiology: Residents will participate in a wide variety of operative cases. Residents may choose to participate in pediatric cases, general surgery cases, or a variety of specialty surgery cases including cardiac, vascular, thoracic, orthopedic, urologic and neurosurgical cases. There will definitely be opportunities to perform common procedures such as endotracheal intubations, central line placements and arterial line placements.
Rotation Director: Devin Lindstrom, MD
- Anesthesia Pain Management:
Residents will work in a busy outpatient pain management center directed by anesthesiologists board-certified in pain management. Residents will see patients with a wide variety of pain syndromes of different types, locations and etiologies. Residents will learn about medical pain management options and about the many types of interventions available to treat patients with chronic pain syndromes. These interventions include local and regional nerve blocks, epidural injections, joint and soft tissues injections, trigger point injections, and even spinal cord stimulator implantation.
Rotation Director: Alison Weisheipl, MD
Residents can work with Iowa Clinic Heart & Vascular Care cardiologists participating in a variety of patient care activities including office evaluations, hospital admissions and consultations, and review of non-invasive cardiac studies including EKGs, Holter monitor studies, nuclear cardiology studies and echocardiograms.
Rotation Director: Luke Groben, DO
- Clinical Pharmacology:Residents work with the internal medicine hospital-based PharmD educator seeing patients referred for consultation for complicated medication management issues, both inpatients and outpatients. Extensive review of medication selection, proper dosing/monitoring, and pharmacology/mechanisms of action will be provided.
Rotation Director: Geoff Wall, PharmD
- Dermatology: Residents can work with Drs. Wilson and Rovner in a variety of activities. This includes evaluation of new patients seeking dermatology consultation, seeing patients returning for follow up care of chronic dermatology concerns, and participating in a variety of dermatologic surgical procedures. There is also an opportunity to participate in review of dermatopathology studies during surgical procedures like Mohs surgeries.
Rotation Directors: Josh Wilson, MD & Rebecca Rovner, MD
- Dermatopatholgy: Residents can work with four board-certified dermatopathologists who are members of the Iowa Pathology Associates, PC group that is located on the IMMC campus. The experience will involve review of large numbers of specimens submitted for analysis by dermatologists and other physicians from across central Iowa. This will include the opportunity to review skin cancer excisions during Mohs surgical procedures.
Rotation Director: Tiffani Milless, MD
- Gastroenterology: Residents can work with The Iowa Clinic gastroenterologists in the clinic and/or on a busy hospital consultation service at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. There is an opportunity to see a wide variety of patients with gastrointestinal, hepatobiliary and pancreatic concerns. Patients will be seen and then staffed with a member of the group so there is extensive one-on-one teaching provided, including an opportunity to review multiple radiology studies and to participate in diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopy procedures.
Rotation Director: Jonathan Fahler, DO
- Hematology-Oncology: Residents will work one-on-one with one of the staff physicians at the John Stoddard Cancer Center on the campus of IMMC. There will be an opportunity to see patients with both hematology concerns and patients presenting with a wide variety of cancers. Patients will mostly be seen in the outpatient clinic setting but there will also be an opportunity to see new hospitalized patients referred for hematology-oncology consultation.
Rotation Director: Brian Freeman, MD
- Hospice/Palliative Care: Residents will work with Dr. Lachenmaier and other members of the palliative care team at Iowa Methodist Medical Center and the affiliated Taylor Hospice House. Residents can also elect to work with Thomas Mouser, MD at EveryStep Hospice providing palliative care and hospice consultations to patients in the home and in the EveryStep hospice facilities. There will be opportunities to assist in evaluation and care of both patients referred for palliative care consultation and patients referred for hospice care. Residents will be provided readings on important end-of-life care topics and on hospice eligibility and benefits concerns to review during the rotation.
Rotation Director: Rebecca Lachenmaier, MD and Thomas Mouser, MD
- ICU Medicine, IMMC: Residents can choose to participate in an additional elective experience in critical care medicine at IMMC. Residents will see and care for a wide variety of critical care patient problems. They can gain additional experience in performing endotracheal intubations, managing ventilators, and completing a wide variety of invasive procedures during this rotation. There are no additional call responsibilities for residents choosing to complete an additional elective experience.
Rotation Director: Matt Trump, DO
- Infectious Disease: Residents can participate on the Infectious Disease Consult Service at IMMC and will get an opportunity to work one-on-one with the Hospital ID Service Consult Staff Physician for the month. They will see a large number of hospitalized patients presenting with a vast array of ID concerns. There will also be an opportunity to participate in some outpatient clinics that allow for exposure to chronic ID concerns like patients with HIV infection and follow up of patients seen in the hospital who return for post-hospital care.
Rotation Director: Lisa Veach, MD
- Neonatal ICU: Residents will learn to care for critically ill newborns, increase their skill in ventilation, and learn application of physiologic principles in critical care. They will be responsible for the care of selected critically ill neonates under the supervision of senior pediatric residents & staff neonatologists. Residents will also participate in twice-weekly morning report, daily noon conference, and weekly Grand Rounds conferences.
Rotation Director: Samir Alabasi, MD
Residents can participate on the Nephrology Consult Service at IMMC and will get an opportunity to work one-on-one with the Nephrology Service Consult Staff Physician for the month. They will see a large number of hospitalized patients presenting with a great array of renal concerns. There will also be an opportunity to participate in some outpatient clinics that allow for exposure to proper diagnosis and treatment of common acute and chronic nephrology concerns.
Rotation Director: Mark Belz, MD
- Neurology: Residents will primarily see patients hospitalized at IMMC needing neurologic consultation. Residents may also elect to work in Neurology Clinic seeing patients with both new concerns and follow up of known neurology problems. There will be extensive opportunities to review neuroimaging studies and, if requested, an opportunity to review other neurologic diagnostic studies such as EEG and EMG-NCV studies.
Rotation Directors: Lynn Rankin, MD and Shivakrishna Kovi, MD
- Ophthalmology: Residents can work in a large regional ophthalmology diagnostic and surgical center employing over 20 ophthalmologists covering all of the subspecialty areas of ophthalmology. The experience can be tailored to the needs of the resident.
Rotation Directors: Kyle Alliman, MD & Reid Turner, MD (Wolfe Clinic)
- Orthopedics: Residents will primarily see patients hospitalized at IMMC needing neurologic consultation. Residents may also elect to work in Neurology Clinic seeing patients with both new concerns and follow up of known neurology problems. There will be extensive opportunities to review neuroimaging studies and, if requested, an opportunity to review other neurologic diagnostic studies such as EEG and EMG-NCV studies.
Rotation Director: Nick Honkamp, MD
- Pathology: During this rotation residents will mostly review surgical pathology studies but can also work in several different areas of their choice. Reviewing hematology studies (peripheral blood smears, bone marrow results, etc.), participating in anatomic pathology studies, and working in different areas of the clinical laboratory are all possible.
Rotation Directors: Kathleen Hansen, MD and Larry Anderson, MD
- Pediatric Emergency Room, Blank Children’s Hospital: During this rotation residents will work in a very busy pediatric emergency room seeing patients presenting with a wide variety of medical and surgical concerns. Residents will work 20 ten-hour shifts during the four-week rotation (with the majority of shifts scheduled during the evenings when volume is highest). Residents are scheduled for some 4 p.m. - 2 a.m. shifts and are scheduled to work two weekends. Residents may request time off for up to 3 days during the rotation.
Rotation Directors: Scott Davison, MD and Erik Adair, DO
- Pediatric Orthopedics: Residents will work with Dr. O’Brien in the Orthopedic Clinic at Blank Children’s Hospital and will see patients presenting with a variety of acute musculoskeletal injuries. In addition to clinic work, there will be an opportunity for residents to work with Dr. O’Brien in the OR. This rotation involves extensive review of radiology studies and can be a great benefit to radiology and PMR-bound TY residents.
Rotation Director: Shannon O’Brien, MD
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation - General: During this rotation residents will work with Dr. Shaeffer & Dr. Matt Edel and will work in both the hospital and outpatient clinic settings. Residents will work with Dr. Edel on inpatient rehabilitation at Younker Rehabilitation and perform inpatient consultations on patients at Iowa Methodist, which is a Level I Trauma Center and a Stroke Hospital of Distinction. Residents will work with Dr. Shaeffer in the outpatient setting at the VA, focusing on MSK and spasticity complaints and will be able to participate in a variety of procedures including EMG/NCS, Botox injections, and ultrasound-guided joint and soft tissue injections.
Rotation Directors: P.J. Shaeffer, MD and Matt Edel, MD
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation - Musculoskeletal During this rotation residents will work with Dr. Fox at the Des Moines Orthopedic Surgeons clinic site in West Des Moines. Dr. Fox is a physiatrist with fellowship training in sports medicine. He sees patients with a variety of MSK complaints in conjunction with orthopedists to help determine the best operative and non-operative approaches to managing these concerns.
Rotation Director: Mark Fox, MD
- Plastic Surgery: During this rotation residents will work with Drs. Yen and Billue and their colleagues in The Iowa Clinic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery group. There will be an opportunity to see and evaluate patients in clinic and to participate in both cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries in the outpatient clinic and OR settings.
Rotation Directors: Lester Yen, MD and Katherine Billue, MD
- Pulmonary Diagnostics: Residents will work with Dr. McCann at the VA seeing patients with a variety of pulmonary concerns in both the outpatient clinic and a few hospital consultations. There will be opportunities to participate in and review a wide variety of pulmonary diagnostic tests including bronchoscopies, sleep studies, pulmonary function tests and interpretation of arterial blood gases.
Rotation Director: Dustin McCann, DO (VA Medical Center)
- Pulmonary Medicine: Residents will work with pulmonologists from the The Iowa Clinic Lung Center on a busy hospital specialty service at Iowa Methodist Medical Center. There is a great variety of patients with varied pathology on the service. Supervision and teaching will be provided by one member of the group and there is extensive one-on-one teaching provided. There will be opportunities to review multiple radiology studies, review pulmonary function test results, and participate in diagnostic and therapeutic bronchoscopy procedures.
Rotation Director: James Mallen, DO
- Radiation Oncology: Residents will work with radiation oncology staff physicians at the John Stoddard Cancer Center on the campus of IMMC. There will be an opportunity to see patients presenting for radiation treatment for a wide variety of different cancers. Patients will mostly be seen in the outpatient clinic setting but there will also be an opportunity to see new hospitalized patients referred for consultation. Residents will also participate in the weekly multi-disciplinary Tumor Board Conferences held at IMMC.
Rotation Director: Arshin Sheybani, MD
- Radiology (Diagnostic): Residents can choose to concentrate on one area or may choose to complete blocks in several different areas including interventional radiology, body CT/ultrasound, neuroradiology, musculoskeletal radiology, nuclear medicine, and pediatric radiology. Residents will meet with Dr. Stradling prior to the start of the rotation to plan their schedule for the month.
Rotation Director: Ben Stradling, DO
- Research: Transitional Year residents may elect to work on an approved research project that they have identified, or one developed in conjunction with local faculty. Projects may include basic science or clinical research. Dr. Hayden Smith will provide direction and support and can assist the resident in accessing appropriate resources needed to assure a successful experience. If the research project involves collaboration with individuals at another institution, a formal affiliation agreement with the other institution may be needed. If an agreement is needed, it is imperative that the agreement is established and signed by all parties prior to the start of the scheduled rotation.
Rotation Director: Hayden Smith, PhD, MPH
- Rheumatology: Residents will work in an outpatient clinic setting seeing a great variety of patients presenting with a vast array of rheumatologic concerns. There will be opportunities to learn about diagnosis and treatment of these concerns, including the review of a great variety of musculoskeletal imaging studies and review of proper laboratory testing of these patients. Residents will also learn more about the proper role of PT & OT modalities and infusion therapies used in the care of these patients.
Rotation Director: Steven M. Craig, MD
- Vascular Surgery: Residents will work with vascular surgery faculty in the evaluation and treatment of patients presenting with a wide variety of acute and chronic vascular concerns. Experience will be provided in the outpatient clinic, vascular laboratory, interventional radiology suite and operating room areas of Iowa Methodist Medical Center. The focus can be on operative repair of vascular lesions or on interventional procedures to treat vascular lesions.
Rotation Director: Eric Scott, MD
Stipend & Benefits
The annual stipend for a first-year resident (Effective Academic Year 2023-2024): $65,985
$750 relocation allowance is provided to all incoming residents.
Residents may choose from two health insurance plans that best suit their individual needs. An annual health insurance bonus that partially funds the cost of a single-coverage health and dental insurance premium is given to each resident.
The program provides group life insurance equal to the resident's annual stipend at no charge to the resident.
Resident Liability Coverage
General and professional liability coverage is provided for residents enrolled in the residency program through a combination of commercial insurance and self-insured retention. Coverages are no less than $1,000,000 per occurrence and $5,000,000 aggregate per policy year.
Short & Long-Term Disability Coverage
Short and long-term disability coverage is provided to residents. Short-term disability coverage (STD) is used when the resident is away from work for at least seven (7) days due to a non-work-related illness or injury. STD pays 60% of weekly earnings for a maximum of 26 weeks with no waiting period. Long-term disability insurance coverage ensures that residents will receive a minimum of 70% of their monthly salary if they are disabled due to illness or accident, on or off the job, following a 90-day qualifying period.
All residents receive travel insurance coverage while traveling on medical center business.
Paid Time Off
All residents receive 20 days of paid time off per year.
Residents are allocated $800 per year that can be used to purchase textbooks, educational software or to attend approved medical meetings.
- Free Covered Parking: All residents may park in a reserved area of the hospital parking ramp facility at no charge.
- Monthly Meal Allowance is provided to residents in the medical center cafeteria.
- Paid Licensure: Fees for all licenses required by the residency program are paid by the program.
- Lab Coats: Free lab coats are provided to all residents.
- Fitness Center on Campus (free to residents)
- Excellent Health Sciences Library on Campus (24/7 access)
- Outstanding Electronic Library Resources (accessible from anywhere)
- Free Personal and Family Counseling Services
- Day Care Services on Premises
Testimonials and Resident Life
Graduating Transitional Year residents leave with a wonderful sense of accomplishment, and personal and professional growth.
|2023||Radiology||Vanderbilt University – Nashville|
|2023||PM&R||Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center – Spokane|
|2023||PM&R||University of Wisconsin – Madison|
|2023||Radiation Oncology||Johns Hopkins University – Baltimore|
|2022||Dermatology||Medical College of Wisconsin|
|2022||Dermatology||University of Michigan – Ann Arbor|
|2022||Dermatology||University of Iowa|
|2022||Radiology||Washington University – St. Louis|
|2021||Diagnostic Radiology||Indiana University|
|2021||Diagnostic Radiology||Brigham and Women's Hospital|
|2020||Dermatology||University of Missouri|
|2020||Radiology||Washington University – St. Louis|
|2020||Radiology||University of Iowa|
|2020||Radiology||University of California – San Franscisco|
|2019||PM&R||Medical College of Wisconsin|
|2019||Radiology||Washington University – St. Louis|
|2019||Radiology||Mayo Clinic – Arizona|
Our selection process involves reviewing multiple items, including general academic performance, clinical performance, board scores, letters of recommendation, personal qualities and other achievements. Evidence of strong communication and team member skills and evidence of prior service work, especially in underserved and disadvantaged communities, is also sought.
- Applications processed through ERAS
- Medical Student Performance Evaluation Letter (formerly Dean's letter)
- A minimum of three letters of recommendation
- Medical School Transcript
- Personal Statement addressing why you would be a good candidate for the Transitional Year Residency Program at Iowa Methodist Medical Center
- Passing scores on USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 or COMLEX Step 1 and Step 2