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Teach, listen, love: a personalised approach to supervising doctors in training
  1. Karen Quillen
  1. Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Karen Quillen, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA; kq{at}

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Whitfield and colleagues in a recent letter in this journal used survey and focus group data from internal medicine trainees to get their input into how supervision could be most helpful; they highlight the value of supervisors being approachable, maintaining regular contact with trainees to develop a more rounded view of the trainee, knowing more than just their names and avoiding a ‘tick box’ approach to supervision.1 In another study among internal medicine and emergency medicine resident physicians, supportive factors within the domain of interaction with attending physicians accounted for half of the modifiable items in the work environment felt to be most important to reduce burn-out.2

A s a haematologist assuming a transfusion medicine position within the pathology department 17 years ago, I had barely interacted with pathology trainees in my training and working experience to date, let alone supervised any. Teaching the residents was mentioned as an afterthought by the pathology chairman during the interview, …

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