Applicants for the UNM residency program have one of two options. An applicant may apply for a spot in our categorical program where the incoming resident will complete the transitional year as well as their three advanced years at UNM, or they may apply for an advanced spot where only the latter three advanced years will be completed at UNM. In the latter option, residents must have completed an internship or transitional year elsewhere.

After finishing the internship year, the Clinical Anesthesia (CA) years will begin. Residents will begin with a one month orientation that will include closely supervised time in the OR, combined with multiple days of simulator practice.

CA-1 residents take few calls for the first month of their CA-1 year. After the first month, residents begin taking calls in regular rotation with other residents approximately 4-5, typically with one or two weekend calls per month. Most residents have 2-3 weekends off per month, unless they participate in the in-house or paid call. With paid call, residents may do a 12 or 24 hour shift, at approximately $40/hr.

OR days are divided into regular hospital days, late days, and call days. In the first year of anesthesiology training, the resident will be incrementally exposed to challenging surgical anesthetics. The first month is a 1:1 orientation period with close supervision and additional specialized daily didactic sessions. Human simulation is introduced to aid in their professional training. The majority of the first year is spent in the main operating room of the University Hospital. However, resident will also rotate through obstetrics and the Outpatient Center. Additional subspecialty months during the CA1 year include airway, neuroanesthesia and acute pain service.

In the second year of anesthesiology training, the resident will be required to complete his or her subspecialty rotations. Typically, a resident will gain knowledge and experience in pediatric anesthesia, regional anesthesia, cardiothoracic anesthesia, neuroanesthesia, and postoperative care units, critical care, advanced airway management, and pain management.

The CA3 year is designed to allow the resident to practice in a more independent fashion, to experience more complicated and advanced cases, to hone in on areas of importance or weakness, to participate in research, and to deepen knowledge through special projects and advanced didactics. The CA3 resident can choose from various rotations during the senior year, depending on individual goals. Most subspecialty rotations are available, in addition to the advanced clinical track and the clinical scientist track. These are arranged in conjunction with the program director in the spring of the CA2 year. The CA3 resident is also expected to complete an academic project during the senior year. The choices include grand rounds presentations, scholarly works, and traditional research.

Resident Benefits

Salaries are set by the Graduate Medical Education Office. Please see this link for the current academic year salaries by PGY level. Other benefits to you as a house staff officer are also described on the GME web site.

Residents are covered by malpractice insurance for those activities officially sanctioned by the Department. Disability and health insurance are provided as part of your employment.

Residents are eligible for 15 working days of vacation per year. Additionally, 5 days of educational leave are provided. The Department of Anesthesiology provides a stipend ($2,000 per year) for each resident to cover expenses for anesthesiology meetings and/or textbooks. Maternity/Paternity leave policies can be found at the GME web site. Residents with unique leave requests may discuss their concerns with the residency director.

Scrub wear, lab coats, ID badges, meal allowance and beepers are provided by the hospital. The University of New Mexico Main Campus offers a variety of facilities available for resident use. An anesthesiology library and lounge equipped with computers and Internet access is located adjacent to the operating rooms.

Residency Benefits


For all rotators within the department, the following didactic schedule if offered.

Friday Morning Departmental Conferences: 06:30-8:00 with breakfast provided.

Visiting Professors: Leading physicians from other departments within the institution or from other institutions around the country are brought to UNM monthly to present topics of interest providing a diverse educational experience.

Grand Rounds: These alternative Friday morning conferences are used for CA3 resident academic project presentations and for presentations of pertinent topics of interest by members of the anesthesiology faculty.

Morbidity and Mortality Conferences: Involves the presentation of interesting cases with significant morbidity or mortality related to anesthetic management. Both resident and faculty participation is encouraged in these conferences.

Case Conferences: Occasional case conferences are presented to discuss and focus on specific topics such as regional anesthesia.

Resident Lecture Series: From 8:00-9:30am every Friday, all senior residents are excused from clinical duties to attend and participate in the resident lecture series. This curriculum is a 2 year structured lecture series that is comprehensive in nature. Each session is a team effort between one resident and one attending.  The first Friday of the month, all interns and residents attend the chief meeting, board exam preparation and TEE training.

Pediatric Lecture Series: This lecture series is given by the pediatric faculty, fellows, and rotating residents on the pediatric rotation. It takes place Mondays from 03:30-4:30. These lectures cover many topics of pediatric anesthesiology.

Mock Oral Sessions: Regularly through the year members of the faculty with board examination skills conduct mock oral sessions to aid the residents in their board examination preparation.

Journal Club: Each CA1 resident is required to host a journal club with faculty member oversight. These  sessions emphasize current controversial topics with the information presented from recent anesthesiology journals.


University Hospital Main Operating Rooms: In the main operating room suite that consists of 16 operating rooms and various mobile anesthetic sites, the resident will be exposed to a wide variety of trauma, orthopedic, gynecologic, ENT, general surgical, and urologic procedures.

Obstetric Anesthesia: Over 3500 obstetrical deliveries are performed per annum. New Mexico arguably has a high rate of Pregnancy Induced Hypertension and complicated deliveries. Under the guidance of the rotation director, Dr. Eva Szabo, our residents receive excellent training in epidural anesthesia, continuous spinal anesthesia, combined spinal-epidural anesthesia and general anesthesia for cesarean section. An active (maternal/fetal medicine) service provides exposure to maternal-fetal transfusions in utero and other specialized procedures.

Pediatric Anesthesia: A thriving pediatric surgical caseload and exceptional pediatric anesthesiology faculty provide for an outstanding experience on this rotation. The resident will take care of pediatric patients ranging in age from neonates to teenagers. A significant amount of pediatric regional anesthesia techniques are utilized. Drs. Falcon and Soneru head this rotation.

OSIS: This outpatient surgical center provides an excellent opportunity for the resident to learn a wide variety of regional anesthesia techniques under the tutelage of the rotation director Dr. Firoz Vagh. This rotation has arguably one of the best experiences in regional anesthesia in the country. Ultrasound guided techniques are utilized in addition to traditional anatomic approaches.

Airway Management: Drs. Saul Wiesel and Frank Jaime lead this rotation in which the resident masters advanced airway techniques including fiber optic intubation, Bullard laryngoscope, light wands, Shakani intubating stylet, bougies, intubating and Proseal LMAs, airway blocks, and conditions that affect airway management.

Cardiothoracic Rotation: This rotation provides experience in thoracic anesthesia, including the appropriate use of double lumen endotracheal tubes, univent tubes, bronchoscopy, and thoracic analgesic techniques. Cardiac anesthesia for off-pump and on-pump coronary artery revascularization and valve replacements will be administered. The resident is expected to develop basic skills of transesophogeal echocardiography. Major vascular surgery may also be done during this rotation. Dr. Neal Gerstein heads this rotation.

Neuroanesthesia: A strong neurosurgical department offers a full range of neurosurgical cases including vascular and nonvascular craniotomies as well as radiologic interventional neurosurgical procedures. Dr. Arpad Zolyomi heads this rotation.

Trauma Surgical Intensive Care Unit (TSI): Being the only Level One trauma center in the state of New Mexico, our institution sees critically injured patients from not only the state but also the southwest region. Our residents receive an excellent exposure to ICU management, invasive procedures, and trauma.

VA: This rotation provides additional experience in cardiac, thoracic and major vascular anesthesia. Dr. James Scott is the rotation director. Typically, our CA-2 residents rotate here at least once during the year. Some CA-3 residents do electives here.

Post Anesthesia Recovery Unit: This rotation exposes the resident to the variety of problems that develop immediately after surgery. Didactic and practical management of hemodynamic instability, airway problems, pain management and nausea and vomiting are encountered. Dr. Alex Kim is the rotation director.

Chronic Pain: Dr. Nels Dahlgren provides a diverse experience to interventional pain management techniques. This rotation exposes the resident to acute and chronic pain problems and offers a variety of medical and surgical techniques for treating pain.  This rotation takes place at both the VA and University hospitals.

Acute Pain: The acute pain service rotation was started in 2007 and educates the residents in acute perioperative pain management. Techniques such as epidural analgesia and peripheral nerve blockade are now commonly employed at our institution. Dr. Brian Starr leads this rotation.

Methodist Hospital: Since 2006, our CA-3 residents have the opportunity to spend a month or more at the Methodist Hospital in Houston, TX. This rotation provides additional experience and advanced training in cardiac anesthesia at the Methodist DeBakey Heart Center, one of the leading cardiothoracic institutions in the country. Dr. Joseph Naples heads the rotation in affiliation with our department.

Information about Methodist Hospital can be found at:

University of California – San Diego:This month-long rotation elective was established in 2012, offering an additional opportunity to gain experience and advanced training in cardiac anesthesia. Dr. Dalia Banks is the rotation director.