Vacation and Leave Policy

University Standard Vacation Guidelines

Residents are given 20 weekdays of vacation (as stated in the policy by Graduate Medical Education Committee of the University of the Nebraska Medical Center) in four blocks of one week at a time. Vacations are scheduled in weekly blocks in the spring of the preceding year.  Scheduling preferences are given in descending order beginning with HO V, HO IV, HO III, HO II and HO I. 

Submitting Vacation Requests

American Board of Surgery: 

Applicants for general surgery certification must acquire no fewer than 48 weeks of full-time experience in each residency year. This is required regardless of the amount of operative experience obtained. All vacation and leave time taken during residency must be accounted for on the application for certification, including time taken for interviews, visa issues, early departures for fellowships, and time taken to attend meetings/conferences requiring  greater than 48 hours of  absence from clinical duties.(written clarification as per American Board of Surgery) . 

Residents should plan on applying for vacation at the appropriate time of the year to maximize the potential to attend interviews. As stated above, all such days cannot affect the 48 weeks of full-time training per year that is mandatory. 

Any change requests to the vacation schedule must be approved by the Program Director.

Absence for Health Reasons Policy

ACGME Common Program Requirements:

VI.C.1.d.(1): Resident must be given the opportunity to attend medical, mental health, and dental  care appointments, including those scheduled during their working hours (Core)

VI.C.2: There are circumstances in which residents may be unable to attend work, including but not limited to fatigue, illness, and family emergencies. Each program must have policies and procedures in place that ensure coverage of patient care in the event that a resident may be unable to perform their patient care responsibilities. These policies must be implemented without fear of negative consequences for the resident who is unable to provide the clinical work (Core)



Absence for Health Reasons Policy

 Family Medical Leave- FMLA

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) entitles each eligible employee to a maximum of 12 weeks of unpaid leave for certain family and medical reasons in a 12-month period. UNMC complies with this act and expands its coverage to include all regular employees with an FTE of 0.50 or greater. Other employees, including temporary employees and graduate students, are covered with at least 1,250 hours of service for the year preceding the leave.

The expressed intent of the Board of Regents is that employees have a right to family/medical leaves of absence. Timing or other considerations surrounding a family/medical leave will be the issues negotiated with the employee by the immediate supervisor, dean, director, or Human Resources-Employee Relations.


UNMC will grant up to twelve weeks of unpaid family/medical leave for any of the following reasons:

FMLA - Request for Family Medical Leave Form

FMLA - Certification of Health Care Provider for Employees Serious Health Condition

FMLA - Certification for Health Care Provider for Family Members Serious Health Condition


If a resident is nursing, we ask that they discuss this with Program Director who will contact the rotation director on their behalf to ensure that appropriate accommodations are made.

Break Time for Nursing Mothers under the FLSA UNMC is required to provide “reasonable break time for an employee to express milk for her nursing child for 1 year after the child’s birth each time such employee has need to express the milk”. UNMC is also required to provide “a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public, which may be used by an employee to express milk”.

Time and Location of Breaks UNMC is required to provide “a reasonable amount of break time to express milk as frequently as needed by the nursing mother. The frequency of breaks needed to express milk as well as the duration of each break will likely vary”. UNMC and Nebraska Medicine join together in providing facilities and assistance for nursing mothers. Certified lactation consultants can be contacted through Nebraska Medicine at 402.559.6363.