Program Description

residents examining patient
Resident - Student mentorship

Why Our Program?

The UTRGV DHR Internal Medicine Residency Program strives to provide comprehensive medical care and seeks to promote the development of academic medicine within the community we serve. Our mission is to empower our residents to cultivate a foundation of evidence based medical knowledge and become the healthcare scholars, innovators, and leaders of tomorrow.

The internal medicine residents will also benefit from near-peer educator opportunities with medical students at the UTRGV School of Medicine.

Our clinical site, DHR, is also committed to serving our community and advancing the education and research of our graduate medical students including fellows. In 2019, we initiated the geographic location rounding system which has been shown to improve efficiency and care coordination while also promoting multidisciplinary team communication thereby improving overall quality of patient care. In 2019, our department also welcomed the initiation of 3 fellowships: cardiovascular disease, gastroenterology, and hospice and palliative medicine.


Block Schedule

Rotations are based on a 4+1 model, with 4 weeks of a block and 1 week of continuity clinic.

Sample PGY-1 Resident Block Schedule:

Block Schedule
July Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.
Wards 1 Endocrinology Wards B Gastroenterology Wards 2 Night Float/Pulm
Jan. Feb. March April May June
ICU 1 Nephrology Wards 3 Cardiology ICU 2 Elective

Rotation Goals

Community Medicine

Our residents are primary care physicians in our continuity clinic at DHR Internal Medicine Center, building their panel over all three years. One of our exciting new additions in 2019 was that of a rotation at the Hope Family Health center, a non-profit clinic serving some of the individuals with the highest poverty levels in the state. They develop and refine the necessary knowledge base, medical interviewing, examination skills, procedural skills, and clinical acumen to diagnose and manage acute, chronic and preventive health needs.


Inpatient Medicine (Wards Teams 1-3)

Residents will develop and refine the necessary knowledge base, medical interviewing skills, and clinical acumen to diagnose and manage patients requiring admission to an inpatient medicine service. We also have a rotation of Admission Officer of the Day (AOD) during which residents practice hospitalists skills in communication with the ER, bedboard and admitting teams.


Critical Care (ICU 1/ICU 2)

Residents will develop and refine the necessary knowledge base, medical interviewing skills, and clinical acumen to diagnose and manage patients with conditions that fall within the scope of a board certified internal medicine physician referred for admission or transfer to a medical intensive care unit.


Quality Improvement/Patient Safety

Quality improvement/patient safety initiatives are a continuous part of residency. Residents will have dedicated time during their continuity clinic week to design and implement a group QI project each academic year with a faculty mentor.


Research

Residents will develop a project for scholarly activity. They will meet with faculty to discuss their research goals for residency. For some, this rotation will be used to form the basis of a longitudinal research endeavor that spans their residency while other residents with a primarily clinical focus may choose a more limited project such as presenting a case report at a conference. Rotations are available each year.


Obesity Medicine

Within our culture as well as medical community, there can be a bias against obesity. On one hand, providers may be concerned for their patients’ well-being. They should discuss obesity and its detrimental effects on health. On the other hand, providers’ attitudes toward obesity may be counterproductive in addressing the patients’ needs. Obese patients may have additional barriers in seeking and utilizing health care and maintaining healthy lifestyles. Residents are encouraged to become more cognizant of their own strengths and biases and reflect on how their attitudes may be affecting how they interact with patients.

Residents will understand the indications and contraindications for different medical and surgical weight loss options as well as learn about the pre- and postoperative care, and expectations and complications of surgical weight loss. They will also become familiar with medical management of bariatric surgery patients; recognize the barriers to care, associated comorbidities and underlying psychosocial factors that affect weight maintenance. They will become cognizant of stereotypes and biases regarding obesity within the medical community and identify medical comorbidities associated with long-term obesity. They will familiarize oneself with opportunities in the community for medical professionals to address obesity while applying motivational interviewing techniques.


Electives

Residents have a variety of four-week, elective rotation experiences to select from: endocrinology, gastroenterology, nephrology, rheumatology, hematology/oncology, cardiology, hospital medicine, orthopedic sports medicine, and office ophthalmology.