Massachusetts General Hospital | Department of Medicine
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In addition to traditional elective offerings by individual divisions – cardiology, hematology-oncology, palliative care, gastroenterology, hepatology, infectious diseases, pulmonology, nephrology - the program offers a diversity of added electives driven by residents’ interests. Some have been entirely designed and implemented by residents. If a particular interest is not represented by the elective offerings, a self-design block is also available.

Advanced Palliative Care

In the advanced palliative care rotation, residents have the opportunity to work in a variety of settings tailored to their interests. For example, a resident interested in oncology could consult on oncology patients in the inpatient and outpatient setting with the palliative care team; attend psycho-oncology and survivorship clinics; visit cancer support groups and financial planning sessions; attend social work and chaplaincy visits. A resident interested in cardiology could consult on CHF and transplant patients in the inpatient and outpatient setting with the palliative care team; partipate in social work and chaplaincy visits focused on cardiology patients, etc. Residents attend Palliative Care team meetings on Tuesday mornings and Palliative Care Grand Rounds on Wednesdays and other educational activities of the service.

Hospital Administration

The hospital administration elective provides residents with the opportunity to accompany hospital administrators including MGH president, Dr. Peter Slavin, to administrative meetings and events.

Inpatient Clinician Educatory Service

The rotation is intended for MGH house staff with general interest in clinical education to develop new didactic skills and evaluate their current teaching techniques. Over the span of two weeks, the resident will have an opportunity to observe and participate on daily teaching. Each resident will be assigned to a primary supervising faculty who will serve as mentor to the resident during the rotation. Daily feedback sessions and evaluation will be arranged with the supervisor in order to assess progress and areas in need of attention. The resident will be expected to appraise his/her own performance as well as give feedback on the teaching techniques observed during clinical rounds.

Interventional Pulmonology

The interventional pulmonology elective provides additional exposure to residents interested in procedural pulmonology. Residents accompany the interventional pulmonology staff and further develop mastery in performing thoracenteses while observing bronchoscopy and other advanced diagnostic and therapeutic techniques in patients with cancer, airway disorders, and pleural disease.

Medical Writing

This elective offers the opportunity to research and write a guideline on a topic of interest to the resident, edit it with the editorial team, and then present it to the Board for approval before it is posted on the primary care intranet.

Massachusetts General Physicians Organization (MGPO)

This would be a rotation focused on QI, performance measurements and how the MGPO is run, from the inside-out. Scheduled activities would include attending hospital QI meetings, and meeting with medical directors and performance analysts to develop a quality improvement project.


Residents will work with the psychiatric consultation service at MGH seeing consults and participating in twice-weekly service rounds. They will work closely with an attending and the chief resident to focus on learning the skills of psychiatric assessment in a medical setting (including performance of a mental status examination) and the management of common psychiatric problems. There will be an opportunity to present and to discuss cases during service rounds as well as to hear other cases presented.

Quality Improvement

This rotation combines many experiences, including individualized meetings with key faculty and mentor, attending relevant meetings in the hospital, independent reading of care reading materials, preparation of mini M&M case, and working on an independent quality improvement project.


The purpose of the research elective is to allow residents time to develop, pursue, or complete a research project. For example, goals could be researching a topic in depth, developing a hypothesis and designing methods for a study, completing work on an ongoing project, or some combination as appropriate. In addition to working with a mentor and independently, residents attend a research round table to informally discuss their work and build upon the input of their colleagues.


The self-design elective provides residents the opportunity to explore an area of medicine of interest to them with the goal of building medical knowledge and contributing to their growth as a physician. A clinical component is encouraged (to differentiate it from the research elective). If research is involved in the self-design elective, then the resident is expected to attend the Research Round Table (please see the elective research section for more information).


The simulation elective aims to develop a residents facility with using simulation as a means of education. Residents lead simulation sessions and receive feedback from peers, faculty, and participants on the effectiveness of their didactic sessions. Additionally, residents are expected to participate in the design and implementation of additional simulation sessions.

Residents Interested in Medical Education (RIME)

A resident designed elective that draws upon the skills of accomplished MGH and Harvard educators to introduce residents to the formal pedagogical theory of adult learning while also facilitating the development of a variety of teaching methods that can then be employed in clinical and academic settings.

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Categorical NRMP Number: 1261140C0
Preliminary NRMP Number: 1261140P0
Primary Care NRMP Number: 1261140M0
Global Primary Care NRMP Number: 1261140M1
Neuro Prelim NRMP Number: 1261140P1