The University of Kentucky General Surgery Resident Wellness Program was implemented in 2020 to address the well-being of our surgical trainees. To navigate the program, a committee was formed which includes both surgical trainees and faculty. This diverse group ensures the unique, fluid needs and interests of the current trainees are reflected in the activities supported by the program. 

The overarching goal of the program and related committee is to support trainees holistically during their educational experience at our institution, while also providing them with a wellness skillset that can be used for the remainder of their professional careers.  We envision that this wellness program will improve the overall health and morale of our surgical trainees as well as improve the camaraderie within our department as a whole.

Modeled after similar national programs, wellness efforts focus on four core areas of well-being: mental, physical, professional, and social.  The focus on resident well-being is borne out of multiple studies that have shown that burnout remains high, particularly among U.S. general surgery residents.  Surgical residents work up to 80 hours and 6 days per week, often in high acuity and stressful environments. Providing a well-being curriculum with multiple support initiatives strives to decrease resident burnout and simultaneously foster an inclusive environment that supports their educational and surgical competencies.


Core Initiatives


PGY-level specific mentorship program
Funding to attend conferences/meetings
Access to career development resources
Global Surgery opportunities


Access to healthy food and snacks in the resident work room
UK GME-provided meal stipends

Care packages for sick residents/families

Intramural sports (ex. flag football, kickball) 


Routine psychology sessions for resident classes or individual residents
Creative outlets (e.g., ArtsCAFE, Barn Rounds, etc.)
Family well-being resources and connections

Access to confidential wellness resources via UK GME 


Monthly social rounds
Department picnic
Resident/faculty retreats
Support for life events (e.g., birthdays, weddings, births, etc.)

Surgery Wellness Committee Contacts

Eric D. Endean, MD, FACS

Positions Held:
  • Chair of Wellness, University of Kentucky Department of Surgery

Sara Brown, MA, C-TAGME

Positions Held:
  • Coordinator Support, Surgery Wellness Committee