Welcome to the TAMC Otolaryngology--Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program. Our mission is to provide the best medical and surgical care to patients from the Pacific Region with disorders of the head and neck and to train confident, compassionate, exceptional Otolaryngologists. Residents in our program will experience a rich training environment covering the breadth of our field. Graduates will leave the program with excellent skills, personal growth, and be able to practice at the highest levels of Otolaryngology.
The program is 5 years in duration. There is a centralized match through the military GME system whereby accepted applicants complete all 5 years of training in succession.
The program accepts two military residents per year. While the majority of clinical training is performed at Tripler, rotations are also performed at The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu, especially at the Head and Neck Institute.
The faculty consists of seven full-time, board-certified Otolaryngologists. Staff fellowship training includes the following: Head and Neck Oncologic Surgery and Microvascular Surgery, Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Pediatric Otolaryngology, Sleep Surgery, and Otology/Neuro-otology. All faculty are clinically active and pursue research in their respective fields of interest. The faculty at The Queen’s Medical Center Head and Neck Institute include Drs. Christopher Klem and Daniel Alam.
- Volume: Tripler AMC has the busiest surgical and outpatient ENT workload in the Army.
- Academic performance: Tripler ENT has distinguished itself by consistently scoring in the top 10th percentile of programs in the country on the annual otolaryngology in-service examination. Tripler residents typically are selected to present at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery.
- Educational emphasis: Program curriculum is focused to develop early responsibility and autonomy. Our faculty are dedicated educators who believe in fostering personal and professional growth. Our program dynamic leads to a strong sense of pride and teamwork within the department.
- Cultural and Surgical Case Diversity: Patient referral area for Tripler covers half the earth's surface and includes active duty military, family members, VA patients, and civilians from around the Pacific Rim.
- The Pacific Island Health Care Project: This federally funded grant brings advanced head and neck cancer cases and a large number of patients with chronic ear disease to Tripler that are not seen in many academic institutions.
- Fellowship opportunities: Approximately 50% of our residents have successfully pursued fellowship training in the subspecialty areas of their choice. Over the last twenty years, graduates have gone on to the following fellowship training programs:
- Otology/Neurotology- Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (Harvard Medical School)
- Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - UC Irvine
- Otology/Neurotology - Northwestern University
- Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - University of Washington
- Clinical Investigation – SAMMC
- Head and Neck Surgery – UT Southwestern
- Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - SUNY Upstate
- Microvascular and Reconstructive Surgery – OHSU
- Head and Neck Surgery – Vanderbilt University
- Pediatric Otolaryngology - Nemours Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children
- Head and Neck Surgery – Stanford University
- Otology/Neurotology – University of Virginia
- Otology/Neurotology – UT Southwestern
- Laryngology - Massachusetts Ear and Eye Infirmary (Harvard Medical School)
- Training in humanitarian relief: Chief Residents participate on annual missions in the Pacific and Southeast Asia. Past sites have included Palau, Marshall Islands, Vietnam, Mongolia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Nepal.
- Research opportunities: The resident physicians publish frequently in the basic and clinical sciences. The Department of Clinical Investigation, adjacent to the hospital, affords staff and residents the opportunity to participate in basic science projects and animal research in a state-of-the-art facility.
- Surgical experience: Residents graduate with extensive experience as primary surgeon including a broad mix of facial plastic, neuro-otology, pediatric, and head & neck oncology cases.
Established in 1907, Tripler Army Medical Center is located atop Moanalua Ridge with commanding views of Honolulu and the Pacific Ocean. Tripler is a 206-bed hospital offering state-of-the-art patient care with an 800,000 active duty, family members, and retiree population of all four armed services. The Spark M. Matsunaga Veterans Affairs Medical & Regional Office Center opened in 2000 on the Tripler campus and uses Tripler as its tertiary referral center. The program also benefits from caring for a diverse patient population from various islands in the Pacific Basin who are funded by the Pacific Island Health Care Program.
The attack on Pearl Harbor led to the construction of Tripler Army Medical Center. For four years following the 1941 attack, the patient population at Tripler General Hospital at Fort Shafter remained at approximately 2,000. Today, Tripler Army Medical Center is the only federal tertiary care hospital in the Pacific Basin. It supports 264,000 local active duty and retired military personnel, their families, and veteran beneficiaries. In addition, the referral population includes 171,000 military personnel, family members, veteran beneficiaries, residents of nine U.S. affiliated jurisdictions (American Samoa, Guam, and the former Trust Territories), and forward-deployed forces in more than 40 countries throughout the Pacific.
Conferences held monthly or quarterly:
- Neuro-Radiology Conference
- Morbidity and Mortality Conference
- Head and Neck Tumor Board
- Endocrine Surgery Conference
- Trauma Video Teleconference
- Academic Journal Club
- Craniofacial Conference
Conferences residents attend annually or biannually:
- Pacific Rim Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Update in coordination with the University of California, San Francisco
- American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery Annual Meeting (if selected to present)
- Combined Otolaryngology Spring Meeting (COSM) (if selected to present)
Residents also attend the following courses:
- AAOA Basic Allergy Course
- Iowa Basic Science Anatomy Course
The following courses are held at Tripler annually or biannually:
- Audiology/Speech Pathology Basic Science Course
- Otolaryngology Updates for the Primary Care Provider
- Cadaver Anatomy Labs
- Microvascular Labs
- Temporal Bone Dissection Labs
- Simulated Oral Exams
Rotations are highly encouraged for anyone interested in pursuing a career in Otolaryngology or those who wish to broaden their knowledge in the specialty. They are assigned ward, clinic, and operating room duties, and will be exposed to all facets of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery.
For students interested in the residency, rotations early in the academic year provide the best opportunities for evaluation prior to the October application deadline and match held in December.
Medical student rotations/clerkships are coordinated through Tripler's Graduate Medical Education (GME) Office. For additional details, please visit the following link:
To arrange and apply for an Educational Rotation in Otolaryngology, go to this page and click on OTOLARYNGOLOGY:
For questions other than setting up a rotation, please contact either our program coordinator or program director at the information below:
LTC Eric Wirtz, MD
Otolaryngology Residency Program Director
Ms. Lei Colon-Yoshimoto
Otolaryngology Residency Program Coordinator
COMM: (808) 433-3169