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Invited Commentary
October 14, 2020

Surgical Coaching—It’s All About the Relationship

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Surgery, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
JAMA Surg. Published online October 14, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2020.4587

During surgical training, there is nonstop instruction and performance feedback, which ultimately shapes our technical and nontechnical skills. Once training has been completed, there is an abrupt transition, after which most surgeons get little direct feedback. Regardless of experience level, there is always room for improvement. Peer coaching programs have been developed as one such form of ongoing professional development. Although coaching is widely accepted within the business community, its use in the medical field remains sporadic and uncertain.1,2 Surgical coaching has been shown to improve surgeons’ skills and attitudes, and although coaching programs have been developed, widespread implementation and acceptance remains elusive.2-5

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