Explore the Primary Care Residency



Jessica Zeidman, MD
Jessica Zeidman, MD

The Massachusetts General Hospital Primary Care Program aims to train excellent primary care doctors who will dedicate their careers to improving health equity in the Unites States through a diversity of careers as clinicians, advocates, educators, researchers and health systems leaders. We emphasize robust clinical training, exposure to systems innovating to improve the health of vulnerable populations, and building skills to be an agent of change in the health system. Coupled with individualized mentorship, leadership training and coaching, residents acquire the skills to succeed in the career path of their choice.

We hope you will consider us for your primary care residency training.



Jessica Zeidman, MD
Director, Primary Care Program
Internal Medicine Residency Program

Program Structure

Over the three years of training, primary care residents have up to 16.5 months of ambulatory rotations. Primary care residents spend half of their PGY2 and PGY3 years in an ambulatory setting. Each year, primary care residents have several core ambulatory rotations where they have additional time in their continuity clinic. In addition, primary care residents have additional elective time to dedicate to ambulatory learning, and beginning in PGY2 have special Primary Care Designer Blocks to pursue unique pathways in primary care careers.

  Ambulatory Core Rotations Ambulatory Elective Primary Care Designer Rotations
PGY1 10 weeks 8 weeks  
PGY2 6 weeks 14 weeks 4 weeks
PGY3 6 weeks 14 weeks 4 weeks

For more details about inpatient rotations, please see the Categorical Program page.

Your primary care continuity practice

The cornerstone of your primary care training is your primary care continuity practice. Primary care residents select a location on the Mass General main campus or at a Mass General community health center. Applicants who match to the Mass General Primary Care Program submit practice site preferences before they arrive and are encouraged to talk or visit with residents and staff at the practice sites before internship begins. Continuity clinics are assigned to primary care residents first, to ensure best fit of practice site and preceptor based on the resident's career and clinical interests.

Your community of primary care residents

Mass General Primary Care residents are grouped together as a class through 12 weeks of ambulatory rotations in the PGY1 and PGY2 years. A sense of community develops each time a class returns to ambulatory as a group and is immersed into their continuity panel and ambulatory learning. The bi-annual primary care program retreats bring the whole program together across all three years. In addition, each year we have a two-week “Bonanza Block” where all three classes are on an ambulatory rotation. Bonanza Block and the retreats enhance learning opportunities and allows for special primary care-focused activities such as special learning symposia, team building and social events. More details about the PC classes can be found here.

Enhanced primary care curriculum

In addition to the Internal Medicine Residency core curriculum in ambulatory medicine, primary care residents have enhanced primary care learning opportunities through:


Twice a year, the primary care program retreats provide a unique space for residents to build primary care-focused and advocacy skills, reflect on their past experiences and come together as a community. Often these retreats include skills-based programs, such as IUD/Nexplanon placement, or motivational interviewing. In addition, national leaders in primary care research, advocacy and innovation participate in round tables or lead workshops for residents.

Primary Care Special Programming Half-days

During cohort ambulatory blocks, primary care residents participate in Special Programming Half-days covering a wide range of topics from clinical care to career exploration. 

Designer Blocks

This time is completely unscheduled with the exception of the continuity clinic, and residents are free to explore learning opportunities that expose them to new mentors or skills, complete an academic project or better prepare themselves for the careers that lay ahead.

Longitudinal Second Site

Primary care residents can opt to engage in a longitudinal second site during their ambulatory blocks in each academic year. Examples of longitudinal second sites include Women’s Health Procedures Clinic, Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine and the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program.

Balint Groups

Residents come together throughout the first and second years to process the emotions around practicing as a physician and harness the therapeutic potential of the doctor-patient relationship.

Mission to Promote Health Equity

To prepare residents for careers improving health equity, we focus on exposing residents to innovative systems at Mass General caring for vulnerable populations, enabling residents to engage in that work and ground that in a curriculum designed to give each primary care resident a tool kit for advocacy to use throughout your career.

Systems that primary care residents have the opportunity to be exposed to include those that focus on:

  • Addiction medicine
  • Immigrant health and performing asylum evaluations at the MGH Asylum Clinic
  • Transgender health
  • Homeless health through our partnership with Boston Healthcare for the Homeless
  • Indigenous health through our partnership with the Rosebud Sioux Tribe in Rosebud, South Dakota
  • Medical-legal partnerships
  • Multi-disciplinary community meetings

Residents can seek more in-depth experiences in these sites if they wish.

These experiences are grounded in a longitudinal three-year curriculum. The curriculum begins with a one month dedicated Global Medicine Curriculum in intern year, which examines the full arc of global health delivery, from governmental policy and planning to local communities, with a focus on health equity. This is built upon throughout all three years during the primary care program retreats, which include special sessions on racial justice in health care and trauma-informed care, as well as advocacy skill development workshops. Skills developed during this three-year curriculum include legislative advocacy, narrative leadership, public speaking and op-ed writing.

Career Development and Mentorship

Mass General Primary Care Program graduates have become leaders in academic general internal medicine as well as in public service and advocacy. They pursue careers in clinical practice combined with medical education, research, health care administration, social justice, practice innovation and community leadership roles. The Mass General Primary Care Program has no one "model" for a successful career in general internal medicine. While many graduates go on to obtain additional training for example in health services research, addiction medicine, geriatrics and health care management, others continue directly into primary care practice.

Each resident is matched with a mentor based on their career goals and preferences at the start of residency, as well as a coach outside of their field to foster professional and personal development throughout their residency. Career sessions during the primary care Special Programming Half Days connect people with additional mentors and spark interest in career pathways one may not have considered. In addition, residents can apply to Mass General Centers of Excellence series in health policy if they are interested for further career development opportunities.

Primary care junior residents receive funding and clinical coverage to attend the national Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) meeting. This is an unparalleled opportunity to meet leaders and valuable mentors in general medicine, gain exposure to outstanding research and become involved in national and local committees.

Application Process

All applications for the Categorical Program are processed through the Electronic Residency Application Services (ERAS). All interested applicants should select the Mass General Primary Care Program (NRMP #1261140M0) on their ERAS application. The deadline for applications is October 20, 2020 midnight EST. All invitations to interview will be granted no later than November 30, 2020. 

With multiple tracks available within the Internal Medicine Residency program, we encourage applicants to explore the different opportunities available and apply to the program(s) that best match your interests. Applicants interested in the Primary Care program can simultaneously apply for the Categorical program. Your application will be reviewed by screeners in each program you have selected. 

Full application details can be found here.

Faculty & Staff

Jessica Zeidman, MD
Primary Care Program Manager

Radhika Jain, MD
Ambulatory Chief Resident

Laura Ricci
Primary Care Program Coordinator

Diane Ford
Ambulatory Program Manager