Vasectomy Training in Family Medicine Residency Programs: A National Survey of Residency Program Directors

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Family medicine








BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Vasectomy is considered a permanent contraceptive method with fewer associated harms than bilateral tubal ligation. However, the number of vasectomy-trained providers may not be meeting the demand for vasectomy in the United States. We describe the vasectomy training landscape in family medicine residencies and factors related to increased procedural training. METHODS: Program-specific data were collected from the Council of Academic Family Medicine Educational Research Alliance (CERA) national survey of family medicine program directors in 2019. Program characteristics, vasectomy training (eg, time spent, procedural numbers), as well as direct and specific faculty support are described, with bivariate analyses for factors related to procedural competency, defined as more than five vasectomy procedures per resident. RESULTS: We received responses from 250 program directors (response rate=39.8%), with representation across all US regions, and program types. Nearly half (47.5%) offered less than 1 day of vasectomy didactics and/or procedural training; 38.9% of programs reported having a family medicine faculty champion for vasectomy. Only 16 programs (6.8%) reported that their average graduating residents performed more than five vasectomies. Programs with a faculty champion (OR 28.1, CI 3.6-216.4) or family medicine faculty as primary trainer (OR 17.6, CI 2.2-138.2) were more likely to graduate residents who had performed more than five vasectomies. CONCLUSIONS: Fewer than 10% of surveyed family medicine residency programs offer adequate vasectomy procedural training. Family medicine faculty who serve as primary trainers and act as faculty champions can increase vasectomy training opportunities for residents, and thereby increase the supply of vasectomy providers in the United States.


School of Medicine and Health Sciences Resident Works