General Surgery Research

The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has received international recognition for producing ground-breaking clinical and basic science research. The National Institute of Health has awarded Mount Sinai more than $311 million in grants, ranking the institution #18 among the nation’s accredited medical schools. Consistent with the institutional mission to advance medical science, The Mount Sinai Department of Surgery fosters academic excellence and advancement by continually pursuing a variety of research projects. Surgical residents are very productive and prolific in their research efforts, publishing papers in peer-reviewed journals across multiple disciplines and presenting their work at numerous national meetings.

In conjunction with the institute’s strong commitment to clinical research, a brand new addition to the medical center has recently opened.  The Center for Science and Medicine (CSM) adds half a million additional square feet of designated research and clinical facilities to the existing campus, including six floors of laboratory space and two floors of outpatient clinical space, housing the majority of the institution’s cancer-related research and patient clinics, as well as a multitude of advanced imaging technologies, including the Translational Molecular Imaging Institute.

Residents who want to participate in research projects must request faculty approval. If accepted, they can take up to a two-year hiatus for research. Interested residents should contact Dr. Celia M. Divino, Director of the General Surgery Residency Program

Surgical Research Forum

All surgical residents have a research requirement during their clinical years. The goal of this initiative is to equip the resident with basic research and investigative skills to carry out a research project from inception to publication. This includes the selection of a topic, experimental design, statistical analysis of data, and eventual publication in a high-impact surgical journal. The requirement is a minimum of one retrospective or prospective study published in an appropriate peer-reviewed journal. This excludes case reports or chapters. The infrastructure available for residents includes several local and national databases as well as assistance from research coordinators on the IRB process. This research forum is chaired by Dr. Divino who conducts a research meeting weekly composed of both medical students and residents.

Surgical Outcomes Research & Quality Improvement Initiatives

The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Department of Surgery's Office of Surgical Outcomes and Quality Improvement (SOQI) is committed to improving the quality of surgical care and provides a unique opportunity for residents. Our residency program strives to educate residents in quality improvement initiatives by involving them in research projects using outcomes data. Our residents are involved in monitoring the outcomes data on a regular basis, to help identify where we can improve and enhance the delivery of surgical care. Through a combination of interactive online tools, data analysis, research, and physician feedback, SOQI allows residents and the Department of Surgery to accurately assess future trends and outcomes in patient care. The information obtained from the database is used in conjunction with the data collected through the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP), which allows for comprehensive data capture. The benefit of two complementary databases and arenas for data analysis allows residents in the Department of Surgery to address issues and maintain high standards of care for patients.

The Quality In-Training Initiative (QITI)

The Quality In-Training Initiative is a national collaborative of academic hospitals working together to teach “applied” quality improvement to surgical house staff and encourage resident involvement in quality improvement. The QITI is sponsored by the ACS NSQIP.

The initiative has three main goals:

  1. To enable easy manipulation of complex data to provide standardized resident report(s).
  2. To develop a quality improvement (QI) curriculum that integrates into the surgical curriculum and addresses real issues in surgical care.
  3. To develop a new culture by training residents to be surgeons who are well-versed in quality science through collaboration among academic hospitals.

One part of the initiative is the delivery of resident-specific outcomes reports. These reports include 30-day outcomes reports that will provide individual residents with longitudinal information on their patients, along with comparisons to residents of the same post-graduate year across institutions. Team reports with comparison data for the same team in the same program across time are also provided. The reports are a great way to start talking about quality of care.