McCoy

DESCRIBE A TYPICAL DAY AS A RESIDENT

A day as an anesthesia resident starts EARLY! We set up our assigned operating room prior to 6 a.m. lecture then start our cases around 7 a.m. Most days, residents are relieved by the call team or late-stay CRNAs at 3 p.m., which is a huge bonus of training at UAB. After 3 p.m., we are typically able to take moonlighting call, study, exercise, or spend time with family and friends. Every evening we call the attending to establish a plan for the following day’s cases. The days are long but fun and full of learning from patients, attendings, and upper-level residents.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE ANESTHESIOLOGY AS YOUR SPECIALTY?

Choosing anesthesia was actually a career change for me. I completed a pediatric residency first, then realized I wanted to do something in the acute care realm without doing ICU. I decided to look into completing another residency in anesthesia with the goal of a career in pediatric anesthesia. This specialty fits me well because it is a highly procedural, team-based field where the daily responsibilities change constantly.

WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES YOU FACE IN RESIDENCY?

The biggest challenge for me is balancing work and home life. I have a 4-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter who keep me busy! I also have an incredibly supportive husband who provides continual support and motivation but also works full time. I always wish there more hours in the day to work, play, study, spend time with my kids and husband, and sleep.

WHAT DO YOU DO FOR FUN?

I love to cook and try new restaurants here in Birmingham. I enjoy photography, especially taking pictures of my kids, and am exploring how to use my camera and Photoshop to enhance the (million) photographs I take. When I have time, I love to sew and have continued to make fun things for my kids.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE UAB FOR ANESTHESIA RESIDENCY?

I chose UAB for many reasons! I loved the vibe I got from the residents when I interviewed — everyone seemed to genuinely love what they were doing. And the time at work vs. personal time seemed ideal. I also thought Birmingham was a vibrant city where I would love to raise my children.

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS AFTER FINISHING YOUR RESIDENCY?

After residency, I will be fulfilling my career goal of a Pediatric Anesthesia Fellowship at Mayo (Wolfsons Children’s Hospital) in Jacksonville, Florida.

WHAT’S THE ONE THING YOU WISH SOMEONE HAD TOLD YOU TO BETTER PREPARE YOU TO BE A CHIEF RESIDENT?

We make A LOT of schedules using Excel; I wish I had better skills in using it when I started. But I've learned many tricks along the way.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE THE QUALITIES OR CHARACTERISTICS OF A GOOD ANESTHESIOLOGIST?

A good anesthesiologist has to be quick thinking and steadfast under pressure. We have to stay calm and work with various team members to achieve a common outcome, sometimes under the most high-pressure situations. Additionally, anesthesiologists have to have exceptional procedural skills, as we are sometimes looked to as the experts in certain fields (intubation, central-line placement, and regional anesthesia procedures).