As surgeons, we’re always gratified to hear from patients who’ve had great recoveries from serious injuries or diseases. Treating those conditions and helping people down the road to recovery are the reasons my colleagues and I became neurosurgeons. And those outcomes are a big part of what makes the med center a special place. But it’s more than a hospital; it’s more than a medical school. It’s where the areas of patient care and education come together that really sets this center apart.
A great example of this is the UNMC Neurosurgery Training Program. A few weeks ago, it wrapped up its 21st year. Lyal Leibrock, MD and Leslie Hellbusch, MD started the program back in 1993 with the goal of developing the neurosurgical expertise available in Omaha and throughout the region. The program’s first resident, John Treves, MD, graduated in 1998 and true to the program’s original goal, Dr. Treves still practices at Midwest Neurosurgery and is a key faculty member for the training program here at the med center.
The quality of the training program has increased over the years. It’s intensive training which lasts six to seven years. As you can imagine, it’s highly sought-after training for residents. They do rotations at The Nebraska Medical Center, the state’s largest hospital, as well as Children’s Hospital and Medical Center and Nebraska Methodist Hospital. Those who are accepted are some of the most bright and talented medical students from their respective schools. The reputation and success of the training program can be traced back directly to the culture set forth 21 years ago by Drs. Leibrock and Hellbusch; and continued on by my colleagues and partners who have continued to lead the program in the years since.
As a proud graduate of the program myself, I’d like to congratulate this year’s residents: Joe Cheatle, MD and Kyle Nelson, MD. Joe and his family will be relocating to South Carolina for practice and Kyle and his family will return to their home state of Minnesota.
Including Dr. Treves, many of the program’s graduates continue to practice neurosurgery in the region. These include: Mark Puccioni, MD, Brad Bowdino, MD, Guy Music, MD, Dan Tomes, MD, Scott Boswell, MD and myself.
The Nebraska Medical Center’s neurology/neurosurgery program was ranked 31st nationally on US News and World Report’s list of America’s Best Hospitals.