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"MGH Radiology has a long tradition of educational excellence with a strong commitment to training the next generation of radiologists. Our faculty members work tirelessly to make the resident experience among the best in the world, and we take great pride in the individual accomplishments of our trainees.”James A. Brink, MDRadiologist-in-Chief
The Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Radiology residency program currently has a total of 42 residents. Eight diagnostic radiology appointments will be made for each July 1, renewable at yearly intervals for four years. Appointments begin after the completion of at least one year of postgraduate training in a clinical internship. Training in all subspecialty areas and modalities of radiology is offered, including a comprehensive experience with interventional techniques. We have received accreditation for the combined Interventional Radiology/Diagnostic Radiology (IR/DR) residency program and are accepting applications.
The Department of Radiology is dedicated to training top-notch clinical radiologists who will practice in a variety of academic and private settings. One of our goals is to train the next generation of academic radiologists, who will continue to contribute to the specialty and expand the frontiers of medical imaging. Opportunities for resident participation in basic and clinical research are provided. Greater than 90% of our residents pursue subspecialty training, both through the focused year during the residency and additional fellowship training. Many of our residents elect to stay at Mass General for their fellowship training through one of several ACGME-certified and other fellowship programs.
Residents are evaluated after the completion of each rotation by a report submitted to the Program Director by division members. These reports are reviewed with the resident by the Program Director in semiannual meetings or more frequently as necessary. Residents are also encouraged to provide feedback on each rotation, and these recommendations are often quickly incorporated to further improve the program.
Trainees are assured opportunities to acquire a broad range of diagnostic skills, as well as to participate in vascular embolization, percutaneous biopsies, abscess drainage, and other interventional procedures. Residents also receive advanced training in cutting edge technologies including MRI, and have the opportunity to spend time during the third year at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging as part of an Advanced MRI rotation.
Residents actively participate in the Harvard Medical School clinical clerkships in radiology at Mass General, serving as teachers, tutors, and mentors to students enrolled in the clerkship and introducing medical students to the practice of radiology. Residents are also given appointments as clinical fellows at Harvard Medical School, which allows them access to the Harvard library system, athletic facilities, and Harvard bookstore discounts.
Second and third year residents serve as radiologic discussants at the Pathology department’s weekly autopsy conference. The in-training examination prepared by the American College of Radiology is administered during the first, second and third years of residency. The results provide a self-evaluation of both the department's and the resident's accomplishments. Courses in both basic and advanced life saving (BLS and ACLS) are offered within the department periodically.
The Mass General Department of Radiology is uniquely positioned to provide exposure to a wide variety of disease states, a critical component of radiology training:
The Department of Radiology has long been dedicated to the training of future radiologists. It was the first in the country to establish a residency training program. Resident education is given a high priority by the staff, which consists of approximately 120 radiologists. The formal training program is closely integrated with the latest advances occurring in the radiologic care of patients.
The department is physically and administratively divided into divisions, largely according to organ system. The resident rotations correspond to these divisions. The organization of the department by organ system permits our radiologists to serve as an important part of the subspecialty care team, developing important relationships with referring physicians and building clinical understanding that transcends a particular modality.
The Department of Radiology at Mass General is a dynamic area with ever-improving facilities. Some highlights include:
The department performs more than 650,000 examinations annually. The high volume of cases facilitates teaching and clinical investigations. For example, the department census for 2013 included:
Residents receive a $700 fund that is renewed each academic year, which they can apply toward textbooks or other educational materials. Residents also receive annual subscriptions to RadPrimer and RadIQ for use during residency and subscriptions to services including StatDx and E-anatomy.
Residents are reimbursed in full for their annual registration fees to the American Board of Radiology.
Mass General, and the entire Partners healthcare system, use an-Epic-based electronic medical record system, facilitating access to clinical information across a variety of institutions.
Residents are provided a stipend for a new laptop computer at the beginning of the first year for their exclusive use, allowing creation of a teaching file, preparation of presentations, and easy access to the Internet. An internal, resident-maintained website known as Reshub is an invaluable resource for sharing information within the department.
There are extensive IT resources in the Department of Radiology, some of which have been developed by residents. For example, QPID is an internal web-based program that provides the ability to search a patient’s electronic medical record for any disease, operations, or abnormal studies that may aid in the interpretation of an imaging study. Residents also have access to Render, a web-based tool that searchers prior radiology reports. This tool is often used for retrospective research projects as well as allowing residents to compile a list of all studies they have read.
American Institute for Radiologic Pathology (AIRP)
Residents spend four weeks away from their clinical rotations to attend the AIRP course in Washington, DC. The department covers the costs of registration and tuition. The department also provides a generous stipend that can be applied to living expenses and housing.
Residents who have an abstract accepted for presentation at a nationally or internationally recognized radiology conference are given a generous stipend to defray the costs of lodging, transportation, and food in order to attend, with the approval of the program director. In addition, all residents are funded to attend one major conference (typically the RSNA in the third year).
The department sponsors memberships for all residents in the New England Roentgen Ray Society, a local radiologic educational society that coordinates monthly afternoon seminars in Boston, and provides clinical coverage for them to attend. Residents have found this exposure to various current topics in radiology very worthwhile and are encouraged to attend when possible. Residents are also enrolled in other associations that offer free memberships to trainees, including the Massachusetts Medical Society, American Roentgen Ray Society (ARRS), and the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).
Residents who obtain full Massachusetts licenses (the costs of which are reimbursed by the department) and are ACLS certified are eligible to participate in moonlighting opportunities within the Department of Radiology, providing physician coverage of contrast injections in outpatient imaging centers in Waltham, Chelsea and Danvers. This important opportunity can be pursued as a PGY-3 as per hospital insurance regulations soon after starting the residency. Moonlighting opportunities outside of the hospital (such as providing coverage for private practice groups in the area) can also be pursued, in compliance with the policies of Mass General, Partners and the malpractice insurance carrier. These outside opportunities are ordinarily limited to third and fourth year residents, and approval by the program director is required.
The department has a current library of radiology textbooks and CD-based learning resources that are reserved exclusively for the use of residents. Residents can check these materials out for self-study during each subspecialty rotation.
Salary and Benefits
As an employee of Partners Health System, residents are paid according to a standardized scale that is applied to all residents working at Massachusetts General Hospital. The annual salary for a PGY-2 resident starting the residency in July 2016 was $63,240. In addition, Partners offers a range of health insurance plans, dental insurance plans, and life, disability, and accident insurance. Residents can also participate in tax-deferred dependent and healthcare reimbursement accounts as well as tax-sheltered annuities through one of several investment firms.
Residents are typically assigned in two- to four-week blocks to one of the following subspecialty areas of radiology:
From the beginning, residents are expected to read assigned material, to be involved in the performance and interpretation of patient examinations, and to participate in discussions concerning diagnostic problems. Basic principles of radiology are stressed as the physical and procedural foundations of diagnostic imaging are laid. Residents are encouraged to work toward increasing levels of responsibility, particularly in the emergency radiology rotation, usually completed between the middle of second year and the beginning of third year.
In general, the subspecialty divisions are organized by body system, each encompassing a variety of appropriate modalities to allow residents to become familiar with pathology and pathophysiology and to promote critical selection of appropriate tests. Our radiologists serve as valuable members of the patient care team.
A resident may elect to spend a maximum of three months of rotations at the Brigham and Women's Hospital with approval of both program directors, and there is a two-week elective rotation in Interventional Radiology at the Mount Auburn Hospital, a Harvard teaching hospital in Cambridge, MA.
The focused year represents an important and valuable opportunity to pursue a year of subspecialty training in the fourth year of residency. During the focused year, the resident is given experience comparable to a clinical fellow in the subspecialty, with equal exposure to the variety of modalities and procedures. During the focused year, residents take call only in the subspecialty area(s) they have chosen for the focused year.
In addition to daily teaching that occurs during the department's clinical activities, residents are provided a high-quality, organized curriculum of "hot seat" case discussion conferences, lectures, and subspecialty conferences that provide a broad exposure to the many facets of radiology.
Morning case conference
(Daily, 7:30am - 8:15am): This 45-minute case conference trains residents to identify pertinent findings, correlate images with the clinical presentation, and construct a concise but complete differential diagnosis. Most importantly, the comfortable and congenial atmosphere of the residency pervades this conference, creating an excellent opportunity for learning. The variety of cases is drawn from the huge breadth of pathology encountered every day at Mass General. These conferences are conducted by faculty members with particular interest and expertise in teaching.
(Daily, 12:15 - 1:15pm): Daily didactic sessions constitute the fundamental core of the teaching program. These lectures are organized into numerous subspecialty "minicourses," each of which is coordinated by a senior staff member who is responsible for developing a curriculum for the block that covers the fundamental topics of each subspecialty. This organized approach ensures that the resident is given a broad exposure to each area.
Radiology pathology correlation
Tuesday conferences are devoted to radiology pathology correlation. Each resident is assigned one to two conferences per semester, in which cases with pathologic correlation are presented as unknowns to be discussed by a fellow resident. Attendings from each subspecialty are present as additional discussants to discuss the radiologic approach to differential diagnosis, and a member of the Pathology department is present to discuss the pathologic evaluation.
Radiology Grand Rounds
On Wednesdays during the academic year, prominent radiologists from around the country are invited to Mass General. The topics of these sessions typically focus on the latest information and concepts in radiology and are presented in conjunction with the ongoing Minicourse.
Summer teaching conferences
The summer daily didactic sessions are directed at the incoming first-year residents, providing a basic core curriculum that serves as an introduction to radiology. Special focus is given to radiologic physics and MR physics.
Beyond interpretation sessions
Several weeks during the year are devoted to teaching of the non-interpretive skills required of the radiologist. These sessions stress the skills and concepts that are highlighted by the American Board of Radiology and required by the ACGME. These sessions include topics such as statistics, critical and analysis skills, professionalism, and ethics, and heath care policy.
Each subspecialty area convenes conferences that provide additional educational opportunities for the resident. Residents working within a particular subspecialty are expected to attend, and all residents are welcome. These conferences take on a variety of forms, including a review of interesting cases, "hot seat" case conferences, and didactic sessions with attendings. The current schedule includes:
American Institute of Radiologic Pathology (AIRP) Course in Radiologic Pathology
During the third year of residency, the department provides tuition and releases the resident from clinical duties in order to attend the four-week course in Washington, DC.
New England Roentgen Ray Society (NERRS)
All residents are provided membership in the NERRS, which sponsors a course in the physics of radiology on a citywide basis as well as monthly meetings focusing on each subspecialty. Residents are excused from clinical responsibilities to attend the monthly meetings.
The Holmes Library is located centrally within the department and includes a collection of historical resources, current journals, and a large library of textbooks for the exclusive use of residents. These materials can be checked out for use during each subspecialty rotation. A complete library of CD-based computer resources, including the ACR Teaching Files, is also available for use by the residents.
The Department of Radiology participates in multiple conferences that involve a number of specialties at Massachusetts General Hospital. The most notable of these is the Clinical Pathologic Conference, which is regularly published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Residents find many of these meetings to be of considerable educational value, allowing residents to correlate imaging findings within the latest information in treatment and management.
The Department of Radiology at Mass General is a busy clinical department that offers 24 hour a day, 7 day a week service to our patients and referring physicians. This necessitates resident call to provide care during off hours—for inpatients, outpatients in offices and satellite urgent care clinics, one of the busiest emergency department in New England and a level 1 trauma center.
Our call schedule is carefully designed to provide this coverage while also providing an important educational setting for residents, helping to build confidence and experience. These experiences build up to coverage of the emergency department in a one-month night float experience that takes place in the middle or second half of the second year of residency.
Call schedule is divided among different call "pools" that are assigned to each class of residents in turn.
The Mass General Department of Radiology is a world-renowned center for research in radiology, including basic, applied, and clinical research. The department received the most NIH funding of any radiology department in the country last year. Although not required, many residents elect to pursue one or more research projects during their residency. Residents can apply for dedicated research time during the residency in blocks of one or more weeks in order to focus full-time on an ongoing project. In addition, residents are sponsored to attend major radiology conferences at which a scientific abstract has been accepted for presentation. Time may be devoted to basic research during the focused year. The ACGME requires all residents to complete a scholarly project during their residency.
Basic research is largely performed in an easily accessible, off-campus facility in Charlestown, which is equipped with all state-of the-art imaging technologies that are exclusively dedicated to research. Areas of particularly intense research interest include contrast agents, functional neuroimaging, teleradiology, and molecular imaging.
Clinical and health services research as well as quality improvement research is also an important component of the department's activities. Numerous projects are ongoing in all divisions, and residents can quickly become involved in research by developing a project with a faculty mentor.
More detailed information about ongoing work in the department can be accessed at the following sites:
Mass General Imaging's Global Health Programs are dedicated to addressing unmet medical imaging needs and healthcare disparities for vulnerable and crisis-affected populations. We have programs that focus on education/training, technology transfer, research, clinical service, and institutional development.
Because radiology is a busy clinical service, residents are busy during the workday: interpreting studies, interacting with patients and referring physicians, planning and protocoling upcoming studies, and participating in the educational activities of the department. Although there is no typical daily schedule because of the variety of clinical rotations, a typical schedule might include:
The Department of Radiology at Mass General offers many resources to help streamline the resident's daily work.
Newly updated, next-generation voice recognition software allows residents to efficiently dictate, edit, and sign off on each report instantly, making the reports instantly available and relieving the resident of the requirement to edit transcribed reports many hours or days later.
Ultrasound technologists are in the hospital 24 hours a day to complete emergency and portable cases; the resident can then focus mainly on the tasks of image interpretation. Each resident is also fully trained in the techniques of scanning in order that he or she can check and troubleshoot particularly difficult cases. We are fortunate to have many well trained fellows who serve as an additional source of interesting cases and in-person teaching and function in parallel to the residents.
Importantly, our residents enjoy socializing outside of the hospital. Residents frequently meet after work for drinks at The Hill or Harvard Gardens, across the street from the hospital on Cambridge Street, or at one of the bars at the unique new Liberty Hotel in the renovated Suffolk County jail next-door to Mass General. Wine and Cheese parties, pot luck dinners, and poker nights have become frequent events. Several residents have taken sailing lessons at the public Community Boating, located right across the street from the hospital. This congenial atmosphere pervades the residency as well, creating a fun and comfortable place to work.
Boston's reputation as a center for medicine, scientific research, and education is world-renowned. The city itself, with its unique blend of cosmopolitan beauty and quaint, historical charm, offers an exciting diversity of cultural attractions. For the outdoor enthusiasts, Boston is conveniently accessible to both the mountains and the seashore, and most residents enjoy the area during their training years. The New England fall foliage is an annual worldwide attraction, and residents frequently take advantage of the locale to ski, hike, and sail.
In addition, Boston boasts the advantages of a world famous city. Boston's restaurants are among the most celebrated in the world, with a diverse selection of restaurants featuring both well established and rising young chefs and a variety of cuisines. We are home to the New England Patriots as well as the Boston Red Sox, Boston Celtics, and Boston Bruins. The Museum of Fine Arts heads a list of notable museums, and the Boston Symphony and Boston Ballet are among the most famous offerings in the performing arts.
Massachusetts General Hospital is located on the edge of Beacon Hill, one of Boston's most famous and historic neighborhoods, which is home to the Massachusetts State House and the historic Charles Street shopping area. The hospital is located just steps away from Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market, the Boston Common and Public Gardens, the Back Bay with the Newbury Street Area, and the North End, Boston's traditionally Italian neighborhood. Mass General is also located just steps across the Charles River from Cambridge, home to the main Harvard University and MIT campuses as well as a host of biotechnology firms.
Because Mass General is accessible by car, public transportation (the MBTA), and the commuter rail, there are numerous housing options that are appropriate for residents with different personal and family needs. Many residents choose to live in close proximity to the hospital, either on Beacon Hill or the nearby Charles River Park apartment and condominium complex. An equal number of residents live outside of the city in the suburbs, choosing instead to commute to work. After you have matched in the program, we can help you locate resources to aid in your housing search.
Please visit the website of the MGH Radiological Society for information on alumni activities.
Applications to the Program in Diagnostic Radiology are made through the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP) in the fall of the fourth year of medical school, approximately 20 months before the starting date on July 1.
Applications must be submitted before November 1 of the corresponding match year. No applications will be considered if submitted after November 1.
On the basis of the submitted application, approximately 100 candidates are selected for personal interviews. Each completed application is carefully reviewed. Applicants will be notified as soon as possible by e-mail for an interview date in December or January. For a variety of reasons, occasionally applicants may be asked to arrange travel plans on short notice.
Residents are chosen on the basis of their medical training, general achievements, and personal qualities. No preference is given to any particular medical school or geographic area, nor is race, sex, or national origin a consideration.
The Department participates in the AAMC Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS). The following components of the application should be submitted through ERAS and are essential in order to complete the application:
International medical graduates are made aware of the restrictive provisions of Public Law 94-484, the Health Professions Education Assistance Act. The following conditions must be met:
If a request for an interview has not been received from us by Thanksgiving (the fourth Thursday in November), it is very unlikely that an applicant will be interviewed. Our program coordinator, Melanie Miller, can be contacted at 617-724-4255 in the event that personal circumstances demand direct information.
For further information, please contact the residency director:
Of the applications received, approximately 100 candidates are selected for personal interviews, which are an important part of the evaluation process for potential applicants. Although we wish we could meet all of our applicants, logistical and time constraints allow us to meet only a small number of applicants for an interview. Applicants selected for an interview will be contacted directly by email in order to select from one of several dates in December and January.
The interview provides an opportunity for interviewers to meet each applicant in order to assess the personal qualities that are required of a successful radiology resident. The half-day session also provides us an opportunity to share our excitement about the department with each applicant, by familiarizing candidates with our residents and staff, the residency structure, our physical plant and facilities, and research endeavors. Applicants will have an informational session with Dr. McLoud, a tour of the department, and four personal interviews. Applicants are also invited to attend our midday didactic conference and meet with current residents.
All interviewees are also welcomed to join other interviewees and a group of residents for dinner at a restaurant in Boston or Cambridge on the night before the interview. This provides a more informal setting to meet residents one-on-one and learn about the residency. Details about this dinner will be provided to interviewees as the interview day approaches. Although we hope that travel plans will allow applicants to attend the dinner, we understand that the interview season is difficult to coordinate and stress that this is a purely optional component of the interview experience.
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