The Internal Medicine-Pediatrics (Med-Peds) Residency Program at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, in collaboration with at Case Western Reserve University, is an academic program with large and well-known internal medicine and pediatric programs consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report in both internal medicine and pediatrics subspecialties. Learn more about the program through the following FAQs:
- What are the unique aspects of the Med-Peds Residency Program at UH?
The strength of our program is ultimately found in the close-knit community of residents and faculty who support one another and learn from each other. We foster this community with a variety of events, regular gatherings, and peer mentorship networks, and we seek to recruit residents who value teamwork and community.
The pediatric and adult hospitals are in separate, functionally free-standing but adjoined buildings, allowing us to experience full tertiary/quaternary care pediatric and adult hospitals with independent and separate facilities without ever having to step outside. The close geographic proximity enhances our ability to gather together regularly and helps keep our med-peds group close. Our med-peds residents are well-recognized and respected by the pediatric and medicine faculty and are well-integrated within each department. Most importantly, we have continued to recruit a hard-working and fun-loving, cohesive group of med-peds residents who support one another and socialize both inside and outside of the hospital.
We offer many unique opportunities, including tracks focused on global health, advocacy, mental health, research, medical education, and a med-peds consult service focused on young adults in the adult hospital.
We also participate in an innovative 6+2 curriculum, synced with both the Internal Medicine and Pediatrics residencies, in which our primary care clinics are grouped with other ambulatory experiences in didactics into 2-week blocks occurring every 2 months. We have found that this structure improves resident education, ambulatory education and clinical experience, as well as improving resident wellness.
- How many residents do you accept each year?
We offer four resident positions each year.
- Where do most of your residents hail from?
For information on our current residents, visit our resident section.
- How will applications and interviews in academic year 2021-2022 be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
In keeping with the recommendations of COPA, AAIM, and the APPD, we will be conducting all residency interviews virtually. In order to ensure fairness, even applicants who live in Cleveland will be offered virtual interviews only. We will work hard to ensure that your virtual interview experience provides you with the information, time interacting with residents, and other meaningful experience that you will need in order to make a well-informed decision about your residency training.
For general questions regarding the Case Western Reserve University/University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center Internal Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program or any questions related to interviews or the application process, please contact our coordinator Regina Steffen.
- For applications, how many letters of recommendation do you require?
We require at least three letters of recommendation. Ideally, we like to see letters from both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics reflecting your clinical work in those departments. Often this takes the form of a "Chair Letter" or “Department Letter” which can be written by the program director, clerkship director, or other educational leader. The most helpful department letters describe your clinical performance on clerkship and/or acting internships in the department.
We recognize that having department letters may not be possible for all students, particularly due to rotation limitations during the pandemic, and this is not a requirement.
We do not require any letters written specifically by Med-Peds physicians.
- What about Step I/II and acting internships?
We will accept either USMLE or COMLEX exams. We do not require Step II at the time of application in order to grant interviews, but do prefer to see Step II results by the end of January when ranking decisions are made. Step I and II scores are a very small component of overall evaluations.
While we recommend acting internships in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, we realize this may not always be feasible for every applicant. We do not require that both are completed at the time of application in order to offer interviews.
- How are applications evaluated?
We are committed to ensuring an equitable and fair recruitment process. We use a holistic review that draws on many aspects of applicants’ applications and experiences, and uses specific criteria based on our program’s mission, vision, and values statements.
- What do your residents do after graduating?
Our residents have pursued a variety of careers including fellowship training in pediatrics, adult or a combined fellowship, primary care, and academic med-peds hospitalist careers. We are situated in a large academic institution with a strong presence of both subspecialized and general practitioners, and our residents make important contributions in a variety of Med-Peds career paths be they subspecialty, general, academic or private practice. View a list of our recent grads' career choices.
- Where do Med-Peds residents rotate?
Residents do Internal Medicine training across University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center including University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, and the Louis Stokes Wade Park VA, just down the street. Pediatrics training occurs at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital. UH and Rainbow are connected at the main academic center adjacent to Case Western Reserve University, and all attendings at UH, Rainbow, and the Louis Stokes VA are CWRU faculty. All of our hospitals are located within University Circle, a unique neighborhood that houses the following:
- Graduate schools
- Museum of Contemporary Art
- Museum of Natural History
- Severance Hall, the home of the Cleveland Orchestra
- The Cleveland Museum of Art
- The Case Western Reserve University undergraduate campus
- How integrated are Med-Peds residents with Categorical residents?
Extremely well integrated. Our residents are treated as categorical residents on each side, which allows them to hone their skills as both pediatricians and internists. The Med-Peds residents are very well-respected by both departments, and their knowledge base as dual-trained physicians is often utilized by their categorical colleagues.
- How are your continuity clinics structured?
Our clinics are separate medicine and pediatric clinics, maintaining an even exposure to primary care medicine and pediatrics. Our pediatric clinic is at the new state-of-the-art UH Rainbow Center for Women & Children in Midtown Cleveland, an exciting initiative on the part of the hospital to make vital primary care services more accessible to our underserved patients. For medicine, residents choose from among several options:
- Private suburban practices associated with University Hospitals
- The resident-run internal medicine clinic at University Hospitals which cares for an underserved and medically complex population.
- The Special Immunology Unit, a continuity clinic that providing provides comprehensive primary care for patients with HIV
- How often do residents switch between Medicine and Pediatrics rotations and how do you account for seasonal variation on Pediatrics?
We switch every three blocks. We have 13 four-week blocks per year, and adhere to a 3-3-3-3 schedule with 4 weeks of vacation (which can be taken flexibly throughout the year.) This results in residents: (A) having an equal 6 month/6 month split of pediatrics and adult experience every year, and (B) residents will experience full seasonal variation on both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics during the course of residency, as you can see in the sample schedule. Ambulatory blocks occur at regular intervals and incorporate both pediatric and adult experiences including continuity clinic. Intern rotations occur only during the first 12 months of training.
- How does the call schedule work?
On pediatrics wards services, interns work on day team or night team and sign-out to each other at the same time each morning and evening. A recent innovation to our Pediatrics program was diversifying Night Team intern duties: some nights are spent covering admitted patients overnight, others in admitting new patients to a variety of teams with close support from seniors-and others are off, as a break in the action. Pediatrics utilizes rotating overnight 24 hour call in the PICU and a unique junior hospitalist team, which are the only rotations in our residency in which residents take 24 hour call.
On internal medicine, interns rotate long, medium, short and no call days, based on the number of admissions each day, before signing out to night team in the evenings. There is no overnight 24 hour call in the Internal Medicine program.
- How do days off work?
Scheduled days off vary based on the rotation. Every resident is guaranteed four days off in a four-week period per Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) requirements. We work hard to accommodate individual schedule requests and take into account individual needs based on religious observances, family obligations and personal preferences.
- How do you handle vacation time?
Each resident has four weeks of vacation divided into two two-week blocks. Vacation requests are taken before the start of each academic year and most requests are fulfilled, especially for significant life events (weddings, family vacations, etc.) Every intern starts their academic year during the last week of June, as such when the new intern class arrives the following year the graduating interns have an additional week off (five weeks total). During this last week of vacation many classes take a vacation together as a group to one of many tropical destinations (e.g., Florida, Dominican Republic, Cancun).
- Do you have a research requirement?
All residents complete a scholarly activity, including research as part of their residency. Our residents regularly present their work at regional and national meetings. At our institution there are a multitude of resources for research and great enthusiasm on the part of faculty for providing residents with meaningful research projects and support. Elective time may be dedicated to pursuing research interests.
- Do you have a quality curriculum?
Quality improvement (QI) and patient safety are both heavily emphasized at University Hospitals and UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital. Using an innovative med-peds quality improvement curriculum, residents learn the basic principles of the model for improvement and how to design a QI project during the first two years of residency so as to prepare them to complete a QI project by the end of their residency. This project may also serve as a scholarly activity. Additional rotations or elective in QI and safety can be pursued and are encouraged.
- Do you have an advocacy curriculum?
We believe that child advocacy is integral to being a med-peds physician. Advocacy is incorporated into the regular resident curriculum, and all residents participate in additional educational activities centered around advocacy, which can include participation in the following:
- Advocacy projects
- Attending meetings
- Community organizations
- Lobbying the state house
- Teaching opportunities
UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital offers an additional longitudinal advocacy track in which Med-Peds residents may participate.
- Do you offer combined electives?
Residents can participate in combined electives which offer both pediatric and adult experiences, in areas such as pulmonology, endocrinology, infectious diseases, genetics and others. A number of planned Med-Peds electives include a transition elective, AYA oncology, and community Med-Peds. Residents also complete elective experiences in nonclinical areas such as teaching and research electives. We work to develop new combined experiences for Med-Peds electives to accommodate our residents' interests.
- What is the Med-Peds Consult Service?
In recent years, the hospital has looked to our med-peds program to take the lead in enhancing the transition process for children with chronic illnesses. We have developed an inpatient consult service for complex young adults admitted to both the pediatric and adult hospitals. The service is headed by our Program Director, Nathan Stehouwer, MD, and all med-peds residents may participate through an elective on the service or see patients at other times when they do not have conflicting clinical duties. The goal of the consult services is to assist in the medical care, provide support and plan for families around the time of transition.
- Are there any global health opportunities at University Hospitals and UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital?
Both the Pediatrics and Internal Medicine departments have a multitude of global health opportunities, in clinical medicine or research. We fully support the use of elective time to participate in global health programs. Funding for clinical electives abroad can be obtained by participating in the certificate in Global Child Health program through UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital. Research funding to travel abroad can also be utilized and several current and recent residents have made use of this to participate in global health research projects. Our current residents and recent grads have done clinical rotations in Laos, Haiti, Uganda and India, among others. We have also worked on research projects and public health interventions treating and preventing rheumatic heart disease in Uganda, where University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University have been heavily involved for several decades.
- Do you have a Med-Peds Retreat?
You better believe it! We have an annual Med-Peds retreat in the spring, staying together in a beautiful historic farmhouse in Cuyahoga National Park. This is a great time to spend reflecting on the year, getting advice from senior classes on what to expect in the next year, planning about how to improve and grow as a program, and just spending fun time together.
- In addition to the Categorical Conferences, do you offer designated Med-Peds Conferences?
Yes. Every Thursday we have a designated Med-Peds noon conference. Lunch is provided. Each week we cover a different agenda, including:
- Career planning for combined careers
- Case presentations
- Journal Club
- Reviews of current guidelines
We also hold a monthly Med-Peds Grand Rounds, which both categorical programs attend.
- Where do most residents live?
Many of our residents live in University Circle or in the Cleveland Heights, University Heights and Shaker Heights neighborhoods, which are about a 10-minute drive from the hospital and have many great restaurants and bars. Others prefer to live downtown, about a 15- to 20-minute drive. There are also options to live on the west side of the city, which have fun, vibrant neighborhoods and are a little further away from the hospital.
Learn more at our Life in Cleveland section.
- What do your residents do for fun?
Many resident activities involve gathering at someone's house or out at a local bar or restaurant after work. There are also numerous festivals and activities residents attend, such as:
- Bike rides through the national park
- Cleveland Museum of Art's first Friday of the month mixer
- Baseball games (Go Guardians!)
- Larchmere Porch Festival
- Outdoor watch parties during the playoffs
- Taste of Tremont
- Trips to the lake
There are also tons of great concerts both downtown and at Blossom, a beautiful outdoor concert venue. Our current residents Keith Torrey, MD, and Jake Aaron, MD, share their favorite activities and spots around Cleveland in their interviews.
Learn more at our Life in Cleveland section.
- Are there social Med-Peds gatherings outside of work?
Yes! We love getting together, and frequently organize happy hours or dinners with the whole group. There are frequent gatherings that our informally designated social chair will organize. Game nights are a popular occurrence. We also have an annual med-peds picnic and a switch party.