"For me, the team room became a safe space filled with light, stories, laughter, and food. There, my residents helped me read CT scans, interpret CBCs, come up with the differential for bradycardia, and organize my oral presentations. My residents gifted me confidence, advice on the third year and specialty selection, ...

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Over 100,000 medical and surgical resident physicians and fellows (combined, "house staff”) are the first-line physicians for most patients in the nation’s 1,100+ teaching hospitals. Maximum weekly work hours regulated by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) are colloquially cited to be 80 per week. Notably, however, they are 80 hours averaged over 4 weeks (88 with “sound educational rationale”), ...

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Of all the unsung heroes of this plague-time, perhaps those who have endured the most are resident physicians. After graduation from medical school, resident doctors spend three to seven years in intensive specialty training before they can practice independently. Residency is a vestige of apprenticeships from a bleaker past. It is chapter in life when one’s time and energy are mostly spent in hospitals or clinics, when 80-hour ...

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"As soon as I realized we had so few Black residents, I began to ask around to find out if there were reasons why. One person brought up the fact that we happen to be the smaller institution between 3 other larger universities within an hour away and even bigger world-class ...

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Ours is a medium-sized pediatrics residency program. Each year, we receive hundreds of applications. Less than a quarter of the applicants are chosen to interview. Less than two percent of the applicants will be chosen to be our new interns. It is not just up to the program leadership to choose who our new interns will be. It is also up to the applicants to choose which programs they most want ...

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For applicants seeking to match into a competitive specialty, it can be challenging.  In fact, it's not uncommon for programs to receive over 100 applications for a single residency position.  To sort through that many applications, many programs use filters. One type of filter is a USMLE "cut-off" score:  applicants who don't score above a certain minimum won't be considered further. That's why, for applicants with lower-than-average USMLE scores, my advice ...

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"Ultimately, our job is a difficult one. It’s hard to take usual comfort in heartwarming statistics or hollow promises of prosperity when you find yourself loving and grieving your patients. I have found there is comfort and an impenetrable hope that comes from this; this is the life-hack for training: Seek ...

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"In medicine, the guise of 'professionalism' is an example of how an oppressive system has led us to believe that we ought not to advocate for our rights. It would be 'unprofessional' to organize for a better health care system for both patients and workers. To work towards personal liberation, Boal ...

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For students studying at Caribbean medical schools, success in the residency match is a major concern. And it should be, because Caribbean medical students have unique challenges. At the same time, strategizing early in your medical school career can significantly impact your ultimate success. Here are five rules that are critical in residency match success: 1. Yes, your exam score matters. The reality of the current day residency match is that programs ...

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The transition from resident to doctor is overwhelming and can impact your personal life deeply, particularly within the context of your relationship. It is important to sit down and discuss with your partner or spouse and discuss your excitement and fear during this odd phase of life. Although the transition can make or break a relationship, if both you and your partner put forth the effort, you will surely be ...

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For a bunch of folks striving to stomp out malignant processes in our patients, we sure tolerate a fair amount of destructive behavior among training programs.

I’ll be the first to say I’m not the most delicate flower in the garden. Before pursuing medicine, I was a college athlete. I’m no stranger to long hours, harsh coaches, or repeated failures.

Medical students get their first bitter taste of malignant ...

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I’ve done a lot of interviews on my road to becoming a cardiology fellow. Here are a few topics that people don’t talk about enough. Speed dating I think of interviews like speed dating. Everyone puts on their “first date.” Everyone behaves their best; therefore, you can’t trust everything people say. Your job is to really listen to what people are saying, how they’re saying it, when they pause, when they fish ...

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If I had $100 for every time I walked into a patient’s room, introduced myself as the doctor, and was immediately asked, “Hey, how old are you?” I might be able to retire right now — at the age of 28. Of course, I am exaggerating, and yet this question echoes for my baby-faced colleagues and me constantly. Whether it’s simple curiosity or blatant reverse-ageism, I find this question erodes trust ...

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Residency and fellowships are tough. While most trainees come in and expect medicine to be the most challenging thing they have to deal with, what makes a training program challenging to navigate seems to be entirely something else. Having trained in programs in both the U.S. and Canada, there are some trends that I felt had to be addressed. I want to take a deep-dive into some of ...

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Twenty-five years have passed since I finished my residency, and a lot has changed. Back then, we hand wrote all our notes, and the only time we looked at a computer screen was to obtain laboratory results. Now, residents spend more time in front of a computer screen than at the bedside. I contend that electronic health records (EHR) are an obstacle to learning the art and practice of medicine during ...

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Like everything in life, applying for residency this year is going to be radically different. There won't be any long cross-country plane flights, no driving across state lines, no crashing at friend's places to save money on hotel nights. Residency interviews are going virtual. Medical students that need help with the residency applications virtually, can use this helpful tool to make better decisions. For some students, this ...

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More than six months into the COVID-19 pandemic and with social distancing measures in full swing, virtually every facet of life in America has been affected, with medical education being no exception. Medical students have been forced to reschedule USMLE/COMLEX board exams and cancel entire rotations. Residents have been re-deployed to work in COVID-19 ICUs. And of course, the annual residency application and recruitment season have ...

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It is time we stopped framing resident burnout in a certain way. Let’s be honest, the current descriptions give us nothing to build on. How is burnout currently framed?  In a strict academic sense, we are guided by clear, globally accepted definitions. We are familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, depersonalization, emotional exhaustion, and reduced personal accomplishment, as well as the various questionnaires and indexes. However, in the real world, in the hospital and clinics, ...

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Congratulations on becoming PGY-1s! Truthfully, most memories of the times around my internship at Rush Medical College in 1991 are a blur. For example, I cannot recall the popular songs, who won the Super Bowl, or even the model of car I drove. However, as clear and crisp as if it was yesterday, I remember the faces and stories of many of the patients and families for whom I cared. 1991 ...

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The interview season has again arrived.  The circle of life repeats, the wheel of time rolls on as the new residents who were interviewees last year meet the next group of interviewees, and our senior residents again themselves become interviewees in their quest for jobs and fellowships.  However, something is different this time.  The presence of a life-changing global pandemic second only in impact to the zombie apocalypse yet to ...

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