Explore This Rotation

About the Program

The Mass General Palliative Care Service offers an elective rotation for visiting medical residents from September through June. This is an inpatient-focused, month-long palliative care rotation in which residents care for patients with serious and life-threatening illnesses. Residents often spend two weeks at Mass General and two weeks at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, especially if they are interested in applying to our fellowship program. At Mass General, residents serve as integral members of our palliative care team, made up of attending physicians, advanced practice nurses, social workers, and a chaplain. Residents round with the team daily, perform new consultations under the supervision of the attending physician, and follow patients throughout their hospital stays. While the elective is structured to provide exposure mainly to palliative care in the acute, inpatient setting, residents may have the opportunity to visit patients at home or in a nursing home once they are discharged. Residents participate in the weekly interdisciplinary team meeting, weekly Palliative Care Grand Rounds, weekly Thursday morning didactics, and monthly Harvard-wide, case-based palliative care seminars. In addition, residents attend Friday lunchtime didactics with the Harvard Palliative Medicine fellows. Residents may be asked to give a presentation to the team at the end of their four-week rotation.

For questions about the elective, please contact Jim Fitzgerald at 617-724-9509 or email jffitzgerald@partners.org. Please keep in mind that it takes up to three months to complete the Mass General credentialing process, which must be finished prior to starting the rotation. Also, please note that applications received by the end of March for the subsequent year’s rotations will be given priority.

How to Apply

To apply for this elective, please submit the following:

  • Current CV or resume
  • Letter of Interest which addresses the following:
    What interests you about palliative care and why would you like to do this rotation?
    b. What are your goals when you are here?
    c. Are you interested in a palliative care fellowship (not required to be considered for an elective)?

Once we have reviewed your CV/resume and letter of Interest, we may schedule a time for you to talk with Dr. Chittenden. At that point, we will also ask for:

  • Letter from your Program Director stating that you are in good standing in your program, that you will be covered by your institution’s malpractice insurance while at Mass General and recommending you for our elective.
  • The names of two additional faculty whom we may contact for references.

Please send the above information electronically to jffitzgerald@partners.org or send by mail to:

Eva Chittenden MD
Director of Educational Programs
C/O Jim Fitzgerald
MGH Palliative Care Service
55 Fruit St., Austen 600
Boston, MA 02115