Stanford/Kaiser EM Residency

Welcome to the Stanford/Kaiser Emergency Medicine Residency

Thank you for your interest in our residency. I hope that you will take a few minutes to read about some very exciting changes planned for our program.

Our program is about to enter its 25th year. After a quarter century of training outstanding emergency physicians and leaders in emergency medicine, we are very excited to announce some monumental changes to the Stanford/Kaiser Emergency Medicine Residency Program! We have for many years prided ourselves on our 3-year program, graduating many successful physicians who are leaders in our field. However, we also constantly strive to improve our program and to provide the best training possible for our residents. After much thought, feedback from our applicants, residents and our hospital we have decided to transition to a 4-year program to answer both the educational and professional needs of our residents.

By way of history, our program was born in 1991, when we accepted our first 8 residents. The residency was conceived as a combined program with the academic center of Stanford University and its medical center; Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Santa Clara, a community-based teaching hospital; and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, the second busiest county hospital ED in the state. This combination of work environments has proven successful at preparing physicians to work in any emergency department environment, as well as allowing residents to experience diverse environments to find a place in which they would like to pursue their careers. Over the past 25 years our patient volumes have almost doubled at these three institutions. Residents now have access to over 250,000 patients per year, and our two level-1 trauma centers (Stanford Hospital and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center) have over 5,000 trauma activations each year.

We have put much thought into designing our 4-year curriculum. We made sure every aspect of the additional time is truly special, enhancing our residents’ clinical abilities, giving them time to discover their niche within EM, while still having time to pursue scholarly activities. A 4-year curriculum at the Stanford/Kaiser program gives you time to pursue all the amazing opportunities that we have to offer. 


Look at what the transition means for our residency:

1. Improved didactics

    • More hands-on labs (eg. ultrasound, wound care, airway labs).
    • More simulation.
    • More career development workshops to prepare residents for post-graduation practice.

2. Professional development

    • Residents will be enrolled in the ACCEL (Advanced Clinical & Career Enrichment Line) Program. These are resident-chosen, longitudinal scholarly tracks (areas of distinction) that are integrated throughout the 4 years focusing on your professional development.
    • The ACCEL program allows residents to explore different niches in EM, gives them more elective time for academic pursuits and pairs them with mentors in their field of choice. The product will be meaningful, longitudinal collaboration with others in their niche.
    • Tracks include areas of distinction such as medical education, social EM and population health, ED administration, ultrasound, wilderness medicine, global health, and disaster response, among others.

3. More clinical opportunities

    • We have added multiple new clinical experiences, including more senior critical care time, that will provide residents with a greater knowledge base and comfort level in specialties important to the practice of EM.
    • More elective time to explore academic and clinical pursuits.

4. Graduated responsibility

    • Residents will take near-attending responsibilities in their fourth year, teaching and supervising interns and junior residents.
    • Fourth year residents will learn how to manage a department, working with the charge nurse/attending to make important patient flow decisions.

5. Time for scholarly pursuits

    • More integrated research, teaching, and exploration time in the curriculum.
    • Expanded faculty mentorship within the ACCEL program, to enhance research opportunities and help with preparation of a publishable manuscript.

6. Wellness

    • Another goal of this expanded program is to provide a better work-life balance for our residents. By decompressing the schedule, there will be more time for house staff to not only explore these exciting professional opportunities, but also take necessary time for personal wellness.


Our transition to a 4-year program is not simply an extra year of training, but much more; we have worked hard to ensure that it is not just “more of the third year.” We are not just taking our current number of residents and spread them over 4 years; we will be adding a complete 4th year class of 15, for a total of 60 residents. Benefits include more time for professional development and early exposure to different niches in EM through our longitudinal ACCEL program. We provide more enhanced clinical training, making you the best clinician you can be and increasing your marketability. You also receive more opportunities to supervise in a pre-attending role and manage an Emergency Department.

Our 4-year program gives you time to do more, at a pace that promotes wellness and professional growth. We aspire to continue to redefine ourselves in order to provide our residents the best tools possible for a successful and long career in EM.

Sarah R. Williams, M.D.

Director, Stanford/Kaiser Emergency Medicine Residency Program

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