Physicians Name Top Internal Medicine Residency Programs


Which are the best internal medicine residency programs in the U.S.? Now prospective hospitalists—about a third of whom will complete their residency training in internal medicine—have an answer.

Although a formal ranking system for postgraduate medical training programs doesn't exist, a new survey commissioned by U.S. News & World Report gives some idea about what programs are most popular among physicians.

The survey asked physicians who completed their internal medicine residency in the U.S. to name up to five programs they believe offer the best clinical training.

Four programs: Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and the University of California San Francisco Medical Center (UCSF) each received almost twice as many nominations as any other program.

Out of more than 9,000 submitted nominations, the top three hospital-based apprenticeship programs each received at least 600 nods: Massachusetts General Hospital (732), Johns Hopkins (696), and Brigham and Women’s (600). UCSF received 579 nominations. Likewise, 20 other internal medicine programs each received between 100 to 300 nominations.

In a separate analysis that looked at the survey responses of general internists as a subgroup—as opposed to subspecialists who completed an internal medicine residency—UCSF received the most nominations (201) of any program.

Harry Hollander, MD, director of UCSF’s internal medicine residency program, says the positive feedback likely “reflects the strong tradition of general internal medicine training here, the prominence of both outstanding ambulatory internists and hospitalists on our faculty, and the accomplishments and reputation of our graduates who have pursued either generalist or subspecialty careers in internal medicine.”

Dr. Hollander noted that the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education plans to introduce a new accreditation system that would, in theory, make the comparison of residency program metrics more transparent.

“However, no matter how much objective data exist, gut feeling and intuition about the place, the people, and the culture will always remain a key part of students choosing the right residency program for them,” he says.

Doximity, an online social network for physicians, conducted the survey through a combination of web notifications and emails sent to 18,695 members. A total of 3,410 physicians responded to the survey, which ran from last December through February 10.

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