Getting Connected: Incoming Residents Experience Smooth IT Onboarding Process

For many of the 111 residents who arrived last week, it was the first time they set foot on campus. The pandemic prevented tours and in-person interviews from taking place, making the residency application process challenging for some. But thanks to the dedication and hard work of Information Technology (IT), Graduate Medical Education (GME), Faculty Practice, Health Information Management and Help Desk and End Use support staff, their two-day IT onboarding process went much more smoothly.

“Welcome! This should be the best day of your residency,” proclaimed Jack Bastow, DPM, MBA, Medical Informatics, to an Albany Medical College first-year medical resident strolling through the B Building atrium. Behind him, an impressive assembly line of computer monitors and IT and GME staff patiently guided other residents through the credentialing process for a host of health information technological platforms vital for the next phase of their medical education.

The residents successfully completed the process enabling them to access all the apps, clinical systems, electronic health records and medical dictation platforms necessary to immediately begin delivering patient care. Each resident received a dedicated ‘burner’ phone that will store the tools in their medical arsenal.

Catie Riddle, director of GME, said the IT onboarding sessions went very well from her perspective. “The IT team did an outstanding job preparing for and delivering a seamless process for credentialing our new medical residents,” she said. “We’re grateful to our IT colleagues for their support in helping ensure our residents had a stress-free introduction to the teamwork, professionalism and dedication to quality that makes Albany Med so special.”

In years past, residents would spend weeks wandering the College corridors acquiring all the necessary authorizations, said Dr. Bastow. Through months of careful planning, this year marked the second time the IT and GME staffs offered the IT onboarding session in one central location -- but the first time with this setup in the B Building atrium. Over the course of approximately an hour, residents visited seven stations, registering on the various medical platforms and verifying passwords.

Nadezda Mamedova, MD, earned her medical degree from Oklahoma University and was accepted into the preliminary internal medicine residency program following a 15-minute virtual interview. “The campus is gorgeous,” said the Oklahoma native, noting the abundance of trees in upstate New York and beautiful nearby Washington Park. She said she found the IT onboarding session “so refreshing” and “absolutely brilliant.” Admittedly terrified about starting her program, Dr. Mamedova felt much better afterward. “This puts a lot of questions, a lot of hesitation at ease,” she said.

First-year internal medicine resident Madeline Cleary, DO, is much more familiar with the Capital Region, having ‘couples matched’ with her fiancé and Albany native James Puleo, DO, a first-year orthopedic surgery resident. Admittedly sad that she couldn’t tour residency programs in person during the pandemic, the Buffalo native said “it was overall great experience and I think that everyone worked together to make the best of it.”

During her IT onboarding session, she appreciated the staff’s ability to anticipate her questions and make the process flow smoothly. “I made it through each IT station seamlessly with no glitches,” she said. “Everyone was incredibly helpful and easy to work with. I felt as if I were to have a technology issue down the line it would not be a problem.”