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Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program at UPMC Hamot

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A message from the program director, Sean Carroll, DO.

Sean Carroll, DO

Welcome to the UPMC Hamot Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Residency!
The UPMC Hamot Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program is a five year, ACGME-accredited program offering comprehensive clinical training that prepares physicians for autonomous practice or entrance into a specialty fellowship. As a tertiary hub and the area’s only Level II Trauma Center, UPMC Hamot treats a high volume of patients with a wide variety of conditions.

While the program is based at UPMC Hamot, the otolaryngology service is responsible for all of the otolaryngologic care for the city of Erie and the surrounding region. Therefore, residents and attendings work at three local hospitals, three ambulatory surgery centers, and a state-of-the-art outpatient otolaryngology physician practice. This exposure to the entire otolaryngologic patient population of Erie and the surrounding area allows residents to gain experience with vast pathologies and provides ample operating opportunities. At the end of the training program, residents have typically logged over 3,000 cases. 

The UPMC Hamot Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program accepts one resident per year and has seven otolaryngology attendings. There are no fellowships associated with the program. Thus, residents enjoy high surgical volume, one-on-one teaching, hands-on experience, and the camaraderie typical of a smaller residency program with an excellent resident-to-faculty ratio.

The Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program at UPMC Hamot aims:

  • To train exceptional residents in the specialty of otolaryngology - head and neck surgery so each is fully prepared for board certification and independent practice in a community or academic setting
  • To foster subspecialty interest, where possible, and prepare residents for fellowship training
  • To fortify residents’ commitment to providing safe, high-quality, and fiscally-responsible care to all patients
  • To cultivate a supportive and team-based working and learning environment that promotes residents’ well-being, personal and professional growth, and lifelong learning proclivity

The PGY1 year offers a range of clinical experiences, including six months on the otolaryngology service. During this time, the PGY1 is invited to participate in shadow call with a senior-level resident, who provides education and preparation for PGY2. During the remaining six months of the year, the PGY1 has rotations that include two months of trauma and acute care surgery, and one month each of plastic surgery, intensive care, anesthesia and neurosurgery. 

During the next four years, residents become an integral part of the otolaryngology service. The PGY2-4 residents spend only three months off-service yearly to complete the plastic surgery (2 months) and research rotation (1 month). Residents have the option of taking an elective in PGY3. Residents are given increased responsibility and autonomy as they progress through the program, culminating in their final chief resident year, during which they complete a neurotology rotation in Pittsburgh, where the trainee works on skull base approaches, complex mastoids, and cochlear implants. 

At the outpatient physician office, ENT Specialists of Northwest PA , residents receive a well-rounded clinical and operational education that includes principles of office management, coding, and billing. This practice is a state-of-the-art facility with 18,000 square feet and 22 exam rooms. The unique scribe system allows residents and faculty to see more than 50 patients a day with live scribe documentation. As the only otolaryngologists in the city, the practice sees more than 33,000 patient visits annually, and there are approximately 7,000 in-office surgical procedures every year. 

The program also offers a variety of didactic opportunities, including morbidity and mortality conferences, grand rounds, tumor boards, research education, resident lectures/board prep, journal clubs, cadaver labs, PSQI meetings, and multidisciplinary lectures from anesthesia, radiology, and pathology. so  

Thank you for considering UPMC Hamot for your residency! If any of your questions are not answered by this website, please contact Annmarie Kutz, GME department manager, at 814-877-4180 or at