Explore This Fellowship

About the Fellowship

Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) have integrated their infectious disease fellowship programs to offer unparalleled opportunities for clinical and research training in infectious diseases at Harvard Medical School (HMS).

The central mission of the program is trainee career development. The joint faculties are committed to providing each trainee with the educational opportunities, mentoring support and resources necessary for the trainee's objectives in infectious disease clinical care, teaching and research in clinical and laboratory settings. We view the training of future teachers and investigators as our most enduring contribution to medical science. We are eager to assist in the training of women and minority candidates.

Fellows usually come for between two and four years of training, depending on background and career interest. Occasionally, fellows come for one year of training as part of a training plan involving other institutions. Most fellows spend the first year in clinical training and subsequent years in further preparation for a career as a clinician teacher, clinical investigator or laboratory investigator.

Clinical Experience

Each fellow has a home base either at BWH or Mass General. During the clinical training year, fellows spend slightly more time at the home institution than at the other institution, but fellows participate in all available rotations at both hospitals over the course of the year. Extensive and intensive interactions between each fellow and the faculty of both institutions are the cornerstone of the program. Fellows arrange their program so that it meets the requirements of the Subspecialty Certifying Examination in Infectious Diseases of the American Board of Internal Medicine. Foreign certification board requirements can also be met frequently.

About the Hospitals

Mass General and BWH are acute care general hospitals with large outpatient clinics, affiliated primary care providers and active emergency rooms. Both hospitals have 898 and 730 beds, respectively, devoted to primary, secondary and tertiary inpatient care. Inpatients include those on the following:

  • General medical
  • General surgical
  • Medical subspecialty
  • Neurological/neurosurgical
  • Obstetrical or gynecological
  • Pediatric services
  • Surgical subspecialty

Mass General and BWH have several intensive care units, bone marrow and organ transplantation, oncology and AIDS treatment populations. The clinical activities of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) are now fully integrated with the BWH and Mass General. Mass General has a pediatric service and a large burn unit and ophthalmology and otolaryngology services are provided at the nearby Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (MEEI). Both Mass General and BWH have a full range of outstanding expertise in:

  • Gynecological
  • Medical
  • Neurological
  • Obstetrical
  • Pathological
  • Radiological expertise
  • Surgical


Infectious disease consultations are important in the operations of all services at these hospitals. Rotations also occur at the affiliated Boston Children's Hospital.

A typical clinical training year includes:

  • Inpatient consultations
  • Outpatient consultations
  • Primary care of patients with HIV infection
  • Rotation in the Clinical Microbiology Laboratory
  • Rotation in Pediatric Infectious Diseases
  • Ambulatory block rotation focused on sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
  • Travel medicine
  • Tropical medicine
  • Mycobacterial diseases
  • Teaching Conferences

Additionally, specific experience is provided in:

  • Care of patients with HIV infection and malignancies
  • Epidemiology
  • Hospital Infection Control
  • Transplantation Infectious Disease

Inpatient consultations are rendered daily by a consult team consisting of an attending physician, one or two fellows, medical residents and medical students. Generally, one to three new patients are seen by each fellow every day. Each patient's problems are an opportunity for exemplary consultative care and for the dissemination of information among the members of the consult team and to other services. Fellows have a half-day outpatient clinic with the same attending physician every week at their home-base hospital for two years.

Additional Learning Opportunities

Clinical conferences are important learning and teaching experiences. Weekly lectures at the beginning of the year provide a core of infectious disease knowledge and approaches. Weekly management conferences at each institution are an opportunity to gain the views of the entire faculty about the previous week's cases. A joint weekly conference brings the entire group of infectious disease faculties from BWH, Mass General, DFCI and the other Harvard-affiliated hospitals together for case-oriented, in-depth discussions and for research presentations by senior fellows or faculty. A weekly conference on HIV includes management, relevant research and a journal club. MGH and BWH also have medical Grand Rounds as well as morbidity and mortality conferences, which are core activities of the medical services.