Medical Residency

Top 10 Medical Residency Programs in the U.S.

Doximity released a survey to thousands of doctors to compile research on the best medical residency programs in the nation. We took those results and elaborated a bit.

It was the first large-scale survey done to rank medical residency programs in the United States. The residencies were mostly for internal medicine and the top four programs made every doctor’s list. We’ve decided to take these numbers and compare the programs to compile our list of top medical residency programs. We considered hospital prestige, competition, and the residency’s mission.

The Top Medical Residency Programs Include:

10. McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University, Chicago

McGaw Northwestern - Medical Residency

Number 10 on our list of best medical residency programs is the McGaw Medical Center. This institution has a great range of clinical and research opportunities for students. The program offers a rich diversity of settings, patients, and care opportunities.

The program takes three years, is fully accredited, and leaves doctors with the skills to excel in patient care, research and leadership roles.

There are 24 medical residency programs with their internal medicine program being one of their highest esteemed residencies.  The curriculum allows students to become skilled doctors who deliver the best patient care. It is a well-balanced program that prepares residents for board certification in internal medicine.

They have spent the past few years updating their program and improving areas of focus and training. McGaw is doing a great job of being one of the top residencies in the country.

Examples of their revamped curriculum:

  • A team-oriented approach to patient care with interdisciplinary rounds, bedside teaching, and conferences
  • An outpatient program that gives residents the opportunity to work with great mentors. Also a discharge clinic for patients without a primary care doctor but in need of urgent follow-up.
  • State of the art information technology that foreshadows the future of medicine and medical technologies.
  • Numerous opportunities for quality improvement, patient safety, and research with in-depth exposure to medical specialties

9. University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

University of Pennsylvania - Perelman - medical residency

The University of Penn’s medical residency program provides a curriculum designed to promote basic clinical knowledge in internal medicine. The program is designed to develop clinical skills, teaching skills, to promote research, and to develop autonomous clinicians.

The unique blend of intelligent residents and well-developed clinical and research programs creates an environment that fosters an exciting learning experience and helps mold great doctors.

Penn’s medical program is constantly trying to innovate their programs and improve education. What makes them unique is they offer a diverse choice of programs and electives to match many career goals. They also are forward thinking and develop programs to meet the future need.

Some of their unique training opportunities are:

  • Healthcare Quality and Leadership Track
  • Global Health Track
  • Intern Wellness Program
  • Mentoring
  • Patient safety and quality curriculum
  • Use of simulation
  • Procedure and resuscitation service
  • Health policy elective
  • Medical education focus

8. Washington University/Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis, Mo.

barnes jewish hospital - medical residency

This is another great medical residency program on our list. The Barnes-Jewish Hospital is a teaching hospital that has a faculty of attending physicians who work with the residents through a 4-year program. They are constantly trying to curate an advanced curriculum to produce doctors that excel in patient care.

Their esteemed Emergency Medicine Residency Program leads to board certification in emergency medicine. They also have a number of other specialties residents can focus in. Some of their most prominent are:

  • Critical Care– which focuses on the nuances of critical care medicine, providing a clinical based Trauma Critical Care (TCC) unit in our Emergency Department.
  • EMS– Washington University EMS is Missouri’s first and only physician-based, licensed Emergency Medical Response Agency (EMRA).
  • Pediatric– This is one of only two fellowships in Pediatric Emergency Medicine to be supported by an NIH training grant. There is also a new Fellowship Program in Child Abuse Pediatrics.
  • Simulations– For most residents the simulation training is their first time taking care of a “patient” with no attending supervision or other residents to lean on. It provides a great experience and helps bridge the gap to real patients.
  • Toxicology–They provide up-to-date training in the management of poisoning and overdoses. The residents are available for bedside consults for all toxicological emergencies and staff each patient with the on-call attending.
  • Ultrasound– They emphasize a curriculum that demands all residents become proficient in ultrasound guided venous cannulation, eFAST, AAA, pregnant female patient, and cardiac.

7. New York Presbyterian Hospital (Columbia Campus), New York

new york presbyterian - medical residency

The Internal Medicine Residency Program at Columbia University Medical Center provides one of the best resident training experiences in the country. Their program excels in research, education, and clinical care. Due to an agreement between the Department of Medicine and medical staff, doctors hold positions in the hospital to teach and mentor prospective doctors.

The training program takes 3 years and it combines an extensive inpatient and outpatient training experience, research opportunities, peer teaching, and career development. Graduates become great doctors, community leaders, and published researchers.

Residents in all specialties engage in a similar base experience. During their first year, there is a strong inpatient focus, with about 5-6 months spent on ward services and 2-3 months in various ICUs. Residents learn to find ailments, manage sick and critically ill patients, perform invasive procedures, and to act as the primary care providers for their patients in an outpatient clinic.

The next two years are spent developing the following:

  • Time management and supervisory skills
  • Making primary management decisions
  • Refining and synthesizing their skills
  • Teaching students, interns, and residents
  • Preparing for life after learning

6. Duke University Hospital, Durham, N.C.

Duke University - medical residency

Duke’s Department of Medicine has a long-standing commitment to the recruitment, retention, and development of a diverse group of faculty and trainees, which is why their residency program one of the best in the country. Polled residents say they love Duke’s residency program because of the autonomy, camaraderie, and staff.

Duke’s faculty pride themselves on challenging and preparing residents to be the best clinicians they can be. They prepare their students to make tough calls and be fully autonomous. The faculty works with residents to develop individual learning plans and help residents grow.

The 3-year program provides clinical training that emphasizes the fundamentals of patient care. It is designed to ensure core clinical skills, confidence, independence, and professionalism required for delivering the highest quality of medical care to patients with diverse types of acute or chronic diseases.

After completion of the program, the new doctors will have the ability to diagnose and manage clinical problems, be effective teachers of medicine, deliver compassionate care, and further scientific research.

5. University of California, San Francisco

UCSF School of Medicine - medical residency

UCSF’s Internal Medicine Residency Primary Care Program is unique because they focus on training physicians to become leaders in care for the underserved. They emphasize their training to meet the needs of poor and vulnerable patients while developing methods of primary care that are effective, efficient and accessible.

Their program produces leaders in academic medicine, public health, and clinical practice. The program gives residents a mastery of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to excel in patient care. They encourage residents to customize their education so they can advance their careers and focus on specialty areas of interest.

The first year is spent doing clinical rotations and learning how to diagnose and treat a variety of illnesses. Residents will get their feet wet and experience what it’s like to work with patients. The next two years will be spent sharpening their skills and becoming leaders. Residents are able to pick a specialty and spend months focusing in that area and tailor their education to their professional interests. They will gain autonomy through supervised training until they become ready to step out into the professional world.

4. Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston

brigham womens hospital - medical residency

Brigham and Women’s Hospital provides outstanding clinical training, individualized career mentoring, and a great academic environment to produce excellent doctors. They support personal training and development to help their residents customize training to focus on areas of interest.

The Department offers a number of training tracks to prepare physicians in many career pathways. The program is characterized by a high level of responsibility and engagement in patient care, great teachers, innovative curriculum, excellent leadership, and patient diversity.

In the first year, residents take responsibility for patient care and learn how to diagnose and treat illness. After this, residents take on the role of teachers and team managers and oversee other interns and residents to ensure proper patient care. In the third year, senior residents take on many more leadership roles and supervise projects. They also complete research and focus on their personal career path.

Most residents take part in intensive research projects and go on to launch careers as physician-scientists or another investigative career. This is the program you want to go in if you’re interested in research and becoming a physician-scientist or geneticist.

3. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.

Mayo Clinic - medical residency

The Mayo Clinic is a leader in healthcare and it also produces some of the finest doctors. It was the first integrated, multi-specialty group practice in the world and constantly lands on the list of best hospitals in the US. It’s no surprise that the Mayo Clinic lands at the top of the list for best medical residencies.

Residents train in a highly supportive and collaborative environment that teaches them the highest standard of medical care. Their 3-year program constantly churns out great doctors, educators, and scientists.

They have one of the best Medical Board Pass rates at 98% and 94% make it into their top-three fellowship programs. Their curriculum focuses on clinical care, longitudinal care, and tertiary care; being at Mayo allows them to give care for over 140,000 people who come into the hospital each year.

It’s a great choice if you have the grades and the skills to get into this highly competitive resident program

2. Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston

Massachusetts General Hospital - medical residency

Mass General’s resident programs provide intensive training in internal medicine and prepare graduates for a variety of careers in medicine.

Their three-year program provides core clinical training in internal medicine and prepares residents to pass the American Board of Internal Medicine exam. Residents can gain clinical experience in inpatient and ambulatory settings where they learn the ropes and become experts in their field. Research is also big at Mass General and residents can develop skills to curate long-term career goals.

One of the best things about this medical residency program is the amount of time devoted to direct patient care. They train their residents to give responsible care under supervision, until the time where they can act independently.

During their rotations, residents alternate through two general medicine services, intensive care units, the Emergency Department and consultation services. They complement their patient care with daily and weekly lectures and interactive discussions. They can use their time to pursue other areas of interests, research, and self-designed rotations.

1. Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore

Johns Hopkins - medical residency

Johns Hopkins is one of the best hospitals in the country. They also have one of the best residency training programs. In our opinion, it’s the best. The program has a great board pass rate of 94% and is one of the most competitive and thorough programs. They have great specialty areas and they focus on innovation and a commitment to excellence.

They train residents to become life-long contributors to medicine and be leaders in the community. They believe that “medicine is a public trust” and that it should be the main focus in their training. Their program trains leaders and healers who are masters of examination skills and evidence-based medicine.

Another aspect that makes their residency program great is that they create a learning environment that celebrates the physician spirit and encourages its growth. They focus on innovation and knowing each patient on a personal level to offer the best quality care.

They offer two training programs. One is a primary care/ general internal medicine track and the other is their categorical or traditional track. The first year is the same in both; residents work on rotations and take over patient care. They learn the ins-and-outs of diagnosing and treating ailments. In the second year, they either go into ambulatory experience and curriculum, or tailor electives to focus in medical subspecialties. In the third year, residents rotate through clinics in cardiology, pulmonary medicine, hematology / oncology, endocrinology, nephrology, gastroenterology, rheumatology, and geriatrics.

They try to teach residents lost aspects of subspecialties that aren’t prominent anymore in the inpatient setting. Johns Hopkins strives to produce the most well-rounded doctors who are excellent diagnosticians and caregivers.

Getting into any medical residency program is impressive. These are just some of the best that we’ve decided based on a survey and our own findings. Every program has something special to offer and great doctors come from everywhere. No matter where you complete your residency, know that being the best doctor you can be is the only thing that matters.

Tell us what you think below. Which residency program did you complete?

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