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Primary Care Track

For medical residents who are interested in a career in primary care, our program offers the Primary Care Track, which provides exciting and innovative opportunities for clinical experience and training in outpatient medicine. Its centerpiece is the ambulatory long block, which is a six month intensive experience during PGY2 and PGY3 years consisting of continuity clinic, ambulatory electives, and an enhanced curriculum.

Mission

The mission of our newly designed Primary Care Track is to train outstanding general internists who focus on primary care and will provide leadership as clinicians, educators, practice and quality innovators, and/or researchers.

What Makes Our Program Distinctive

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center recently received two substantial grants that will support innovation and leadership training: 

  • $2 million from the Center for Primary Care at Harvard Medical School through their Academic Innovations Collaborative to transform our ambulatory teaching practice into a patient-centered medical home
  • $8 million from the Linde Family Foundation to teach primary care leadership and management skills to medical residents and fellows

Through these grants, Primary Care Track residents will have the opportunity to become integral members of the team involved in practice redesign and to participate in seminars and mentored projects to enhance their leadership and management skills.

Primary Training Site

Healthcare Associates, our hospital-based teaching practice, is located in the Shapiro Clinical Center on the BIDMC East Campus. It is currently being transformed into a patient-centered medical home, and Primary Care Track residents will participate in the design and rollout of our new practice. Over 50 clinician educator faculty practice alongside residents and serve as their preceptors. Our faculty have expertise in chronic disease management, geriatrics, women’s health, minority health, student health, HIV medicine, addiction medicine, and preventive medicine. Physicians work closely with nurse practitioners, nurses, mental health therapists, and community resource specialists to provide multidisciplinary care.

Curriculum

Primary Care Track residents will receive training in the management of common outpatient medical problems.  They will also be provided with case-based discussions and lectures on periodic health exam, medication adherence, immunizations and travel, occupational health, and disability issues, behavioral medicine, palliative care issues, special populations (e.g., adolescents, geriatrics), complementary/alternative medicine, and perioperative medical evaluation.  In addition, they will receive training on quality improvement (QI), business of medicine/practice redesign, electronic medical record, telemedicine, and interviewing/communication skills. 

Overview of Our Program

Our primary care program, which started in 1973, was one of the first in the country. Over the past decade, we have graduated 120 primary care residents, many of whom have become clinical, educational, and research leaders in the field.

Pimary Care Track residents will spend extended periods of time in ambulatory practice while still receiving rigorous training in inpatient medicine. They will be responsible for providing primary care for a substantial number of outpatients in collaboration with other team members.

The basic structure of our program is as follows:

Year 1

Four week orientation to ambulatory care in HCA

Three 2-3 week ambulatory blocks spread throughout the rest of year

Once weekly HCA continuity clinic

Introduction of primary care curriculum


Year 2

Six month ambulatory long block (see below for sample schedule)

Once weekly HCA continuity clinic

Second clinic or clinical experience at another site

Practice week during non-call block rotations

Continuation of primary care curriculum


Year 3

Six month ambulatory long block (see below for sample schedule)

Weekly HCA continuity clinic

Second clinic or clinical experience at another site

Practice week during non-call block rotations

Continuation of primary care curriculum


Other Distinguishing Features


Participation in primary care innovation and leadership initiatives

Incorporation of global health experience

Bimonthly primary care seminars

Quarterly primary care interest group/social events

Society of General Internal Medicine annual meeting participation

Mentorship and career counseling

Development of scholarly project


Overview of the Ambulatory Long Block


Two 6-month blocks during PGY2 and PGY3 years

Three half-day continuity clinics at HCA per week

Second clinic or clinical experience at another site for one half-day per week

Active participation in patient-centered medical home

Standard Elective


  • Three half-day clinics per week
  • Examples include dermatology, endocrinology, and orthopedics

Longitudinal Elective


  • Weekly half-day clinic lasting 3 months
  • Examples include chronic renal disease, congestive heart failure, and hepatitis

Procedure clinic once per month

Home visits once per month

Participation in a longitudinal QI project within HCA

Primary care curriculum two half-days per week

Panel management two half-days per week

Above is an example schedule for two weeks during the long block.

Our newly designed program offers the following benefits:

  • Additional ambulatory and continuity clinic time during residency training
  • Priority access for electives focused on primary care medicine  (Ambulatory Electives)
  • Participation in Primary Care Reform Elective
  • Participation in Primary Care Seminar, Interest Groups, and Events  (Special Events and Support)
  • Participation in quality improvement (QI) projects through the Stoneman Center
  • Support to present at the national Society of General Internal Medicine meeting  (Special Events and Support)
  • Participation in global health rotation in the BIDMC Botswana Program  (Global Health Program) Involvement in planning as our teaching practice is redesigned into a patient-centered medical home
  • Involvement in planning for the establishment of leadership curriculum in residency training
  • Enhanced mentorship and career counseling throughout residency training
  • Practicing with and learning from an established group of highly regarded primary care clinician educators (Division of General Medicine and Primary Care)

How to Apply

We have established a separate match number for this program and will recruit 4 interns each year. Applicants interested in the Primary Care Track should specify this program but may also apply for the categorical program. Applicants who are interviewed will meet with our primary care faculty and have the opportunity to participate in a half-day introduction to the program. (Frequently Asked Questions)

For More Information

Please contact Dr. Howard Libman, Director of Ambulatory Residency Training, by e-mail at hlibman@bidmc.harvard.edu or call him at 617-667-3001.  

Contact Information

Residency Training Program
Internal Medicine
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
West Campus, Deaconess Building, Suite 306
One Deaconess Road
Boston, MA 02215
617-632-8273
617-632-8261
primarycare@bidmc.harvard.edu