Elective Community Rotation AP

Goals and Objectives

Level: PGY-3, PGY-4 and PGY-5

This rotation provides exposure to a different caseload, members of staff and institution. This rotation helps the resident understand the role of an Anatomic Pathologist in Community Hospital. During this rotation, the resident should acquire the following:

Medical Expert

  • If available, be involved in the handling of frozen sections (under staff supervision) including obtaining relevant information from clinician, gross examination of specimen, selection of tissue block, interpretation of sections, advice to clinician and preparation of tissue for relevant special techniques (e.g., immunohistochemistry, etc.) (EPA: C#13).
  • Demonstrate skill in the gross dissection of commonly encountered surgical pathology specimens in a community hospital (EPAs: C#2, C#3).
  • Demonstrate proficiency in the interpretation of common biopsy and resection specimens encountered in the community setting (EPAs: C#4, C#5).
  • Demonstrate proficiency in the interpretation of common cytopathology specimens (EPAs: C#11, C#12)


  • Obtain a relevant clinical history, including relevant laboratory and imaging results and interpreting this information in light of the clinical information and providing a summary to the supervising staff pathologist (EPA: TTD#2)
  • Participate in the preparation of surgical and/or cytopathology and/or autopsy reports as they are to be signed by a staff pathologist (EPAs: C#2, C#3, C#4, C#5, C#6, C#11, C#12).
  • Demonstrate the ability to function at a junior staff pathologist level in a community pathology setting through informed consultation with clinicians and pathologist in reference to issues of patient care, medical education and research (EPAs: C#14, C#18, TTP#1, TTP#5, TTP#6)


  • Establish effective relationships with pathologists, clinicians and technical staff (EPA: TTP#5, TTP#6).


  • Utilize resources effectively to balance patient care, learning needs, and outside activities (EPA: C#17, TTP#4).
  • Utilize the resources of the anatomical pathology laboratory to make an accurate and timely diagnosis (EPAs: C#1, C#9, C#10 C#18, TTP#5)
  • Work effectively and efficiently in a health care organization (EPAs: C#14, C#18, TTP#1, TTP#5, TTP#6).

Health Advocate

  • Identify the important determinants of health affecting patients including screening (ie. Cervical cancer screening, breast cancer screening, etc) as it applies to the control of disease (EPAs: C#4, C#5, TTP#1).
  • Identify factors that may need to be relayed for discussion to the consultants in regard to modifiable risk factors for the patient and their family (EPAs: C#14, C#18, TTP#1, TTP#5, TTP#6).
  • As members of an interdisciplinary team of professionals responsible for individual and population in health care, the surgical pathologist will endeavour to ensure that laboratory practices are regularly evaluated to determine that they meet the community needs (EPAs: C#14, C#18, TTP#1, TTP#5, TTP#6).


  • Develop, implement and monitor a personal continuing education strategy for continuing medical education in community pathology setting (EPA: C#17, TTP#4).
  • Critically appraise sources of medical information (EPAs: C#9, C#10, C#15, C#16, TTP#4)


  • Demonstrate a professional attitude to colleagues, as well as to other laboratory staff (EPAs: TTP#2, TTP#6).
  • Have an appreciation of the crucial role of the community-based anatomical pathologist in providing quality patient care. This will include knowledge of individual professional limitations and the necessity of seeking appropriate second opinions (EPAs: C#5, TTP#1 TTP#6)
  • Demonstrate an increasing ability to handle more of the clinical workload of the community pathologist.  It is expected that PGY4 and PGY5 residents are able to handle the full clinical workload of the community pathologist each day on service (EPAs: TTP#1, TTP#5, TTP#6)

The residents continue a high standard of laboratory medical practice, appreciating personal limitations in diagnostic skill, which will require referral of particular types of case in the best interests of patient care.

The residents will demonstrate integrity, honesty and compassion in all aspects of the practice of laboratory medicine as well as personal and interpersonal professional behaviors of a high ethical standard. These behaviors will include those relating to confidentiality, respect for others, conflict of interest, codes of conduct, personal and professional boundaries and consent.


Updated April, 2022

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