2024 SAEMF Education Research Training Grant - $100,000

"The Resident Unionization Study: A Qualitative Analysis of Drivers and Outcomes"

Resident physician burnout has reached epidemic proportions over the last decade in U.S. medical education with a prevalence near or exceeding 50%, and emergency medicine ranks highest in physician burnout amongst all medical specialties. Simultaneously, we are witnessing residents organizing through labor unions at an unprecedented rate, with membership nearly doubling in the past two years. The underlying reasons for this trend are unclear, however, popular media hypothesizes that this is in response to rising physician burnout and its collateral effects. This project will be the first study to examine the underlying motivations and drivers of resident unionization, and has the potential to provide new insights regarding resident burnout. It can also help identify discordance between residents and leadership perspectives, elucidating new targets for collaboration towards better systems-level interventions to improve U.S. medical training and reduce resident burnout, which threatens the health of our specialty and profession at large.


  • Vytas P. Karalius, MD, MPH, MA

    Stanford University

    "The Resident Unionization Study: A Qualitative Analysis of Drivers and Outcomes"

    Dr. Karalius is a medical education scholarship fellow at Stanford University. He graduated medical school from the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine and completed his emergency medicine residency at Northwestern University. Prior to medical school, he received his master's degree in public health and master's degree in medical sciences from Loyola University Chicago.