The Early Days
I think the first residency program blog was Bedside.org launched by a faculty member at the University of Cincinnati in March 2003. It looks like Dr. Carl Gandola is still the sole contributor to the website.
For the Residents, By the Residents
My former residency program at Case Western Reserve University (St Vincent/St Luke) followed in 2004, and as far as I know, that was the first blog created for the residents by the residents (correct me if I am wrong). Actually, the website was not a blog in the exact sense of the word but it just used the newly redesigned (at that time) Blogger.com to make a regular website supported by the residents who contributed clinical cases, EKGs, CXRs and medical procedures info. This website grew quite popular within the residency program and spun off several projects, including the blog you are currently reading.
One thing that is very important for any website is to have a prominent "About Us" page which shows who is responsible for the writing. We had this from the beginning. How can you trust the content if you do not know who wrote it?
New Players Joining the Crowd
VCU MCV Hospitals Emergency Department Residency blog, started in January 2006, is the newest residency program blog I am aware of. It features interesting patient cases and other information. The "About Us" page is not complete but otherwise the blog is certainly worth-checking out.
Osler.wordpress.com seems to be the first blog by a residency program director. David Theige, MD is the program director of the University of North Dakota Internal Medicine Residency Program. Somehow, I think that we should not name our blogs Osler, Hippocrates or Cushing... but who am I to judge others?
Harbor-UCLA Family Medicine Residency Blog is a group effort -- several residents and faculty members at an LA county hospital and clinic write posts.
Clinical Correlations, an NYU Department of Medicine educational web site, hosted by the Internal Medicine Residency Program.
Ground Rules: HIPAA and Blog Guidelines
Medical blogging is a great educational endeavor, especially for residents, but certain rules have to be observed:
- Strict protection of patient confidentiality as detailed by HIPAA
- Compliance with institutional blogging guidelines, if available
Whatever you write, remember that your patients, your boss and Big Brother May Be Reading Your Blog (Businessweek.com).
Blog away and enjoy the two-way street that the Web 2.0 is all about: Read <----> Write.
Simply Fired - How NOT to Blog About Your Job. Especially If You Are a Doctor
Case Reports and HIPAA Rules
Do's and don'ts of corporate blogging. CNN Money, Fortune.com.
Wikis, blogs and podcasts: a new generation of web-based tools for virtual collaborative clinical practice and education. Boulos MNK, Maramba I, Wheeler S. BMC Med Educ 2006;6:41.
Feature: 5 Reasons to Use WordPress as CMS. BloggingPro, 2007.
Image source: VCU MCV Hospitals Emergency Department Residency blog