Primary Care Training Program

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  • Primary Care residents during retreat

Welcome to the Primary Care Training Program at BUMC!

Our program is driven by compassionate and motivated trainees and faculty who are committed to providing exceptional care for all patients in our community. From practicing primary care in a variety of Boston’s neighborhood health centers to advocating for the rights of immigrants and refugees, our residents receive a collaborative and rewarding training experience unlike many others. Together with our faculty, trainees and community members, the PCTP is a family within the larger residency program and we are proud to welcome you to explore our program.

Catherine Rich, MD
Director, Primary Care Training Program


How We are Different:

Our program has a mission to train future physician leaders in Primary Care who are deeply committed to the care of the urban underserved. We accomplish this in a collegial learning environment with an emphasis on clinical excellence, evidence-based practice and a heightened understanding of psychosocial factors and structural determinants of health. We seek to inspire our individual trainees to meet their greatest potential and to nurture them forward in their own unique career paths.

At the heart of our program is our wonderful patient population. Our residents take pride in being the primary provider for their patients, who hail from all around the world and from Boston’s neighborhoods. Our patients represent a diversity of socioeconomic backgrounds, cultures, and languages. The global nature of our patient population enables our residents to gain a particularly wide array of clinical experiences that prepare them for independent practice anywhere. In addition, our faculty provide strong mentorship and share a wealth of expertise in areas pertinent to our patients including refugee health, women’s health, addiction medicine, geriatrics and healthcare for the homeless.


Outpatient Clinical Setting:

Our residents practice primary care in a variety of clinical settings throughout Boston:


After Graduation Plans

The vast majority of our graduates go on to practice primary care in a variety of settings: academic, community health, private practice. Examples of recent post-graduate plans: Chief Residency, Community Health Center Primary Care, Clinician Educator, Geriatrics fellow, Addiction Medicine fellow, Women’s Health fellow, GIM fellow, private practice, Indian Health Service. Click below for graduates for the past 5 years.



How We Spend Our Time: Primary Care Seminar Blocks

The backbone of our program are the month-long Primary Care Seminar Blocks which provide an integrated clinical and didactic primary care experience three times a year (twice for interns). Including the primary care blocks, primary care residents will spend 40% of their residency time in ambulatory training.

Primary care blocks were great-dedicated time to focus on clinical outpatient medicine as well as nonclinical topics. Having our small cohort as a support group during residency and after was also helpful. – Quote from our alum

Sample PC Block Schedule

ELECTIVE WEEK Healthcare for the Homeless Intern Immersion Primary Care BBQ
ELECTIVE WEEK TB Clinic Balint Group SGIM Regional Meeting
DIDACTIC WEEK Joint Injections & Resiliency Addiction 101 Mentoring Potluck
Advocacy 101
ELECTIVE WEEK Sports Medicine
ELECTIVE WEEK Geriatrics Home Visits
DIDACTIC WEEK Behavioral Med & Women’s Health Skills Night Potluck
CLINIC WEEK Second Continuity Clinic
ELECTIVE WEEK Addiction Medicine Intern Immersion Career Development Day
ELECTIVE WEEK Palliative Care SGIM National Meeting
DIDACTIC WEEK Advocacy Week ENT and Derm for the Internist Scholarship 101 Primary Care Retreat
Balint Group Primary Care Graduation
CLINIC WEEK Second Continuity Clinic
*Interns on the wards during Winter Block, but may join for evening social events

*Click here to view a sample didactic week schedule.


Community Building

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We pride ourselves on creating a supportive and nurturing community for our trainees. The PCTP hosts a number of social and professional development events outside the hospital which offer the opportunity for residents to engage together and with our wonderful faculty. In addition to events in the homes of our primary care faculty, the PCTP attends an annual retreat on Thompson Island that features guest speakers, workshops and networking.


Residents in Action

Annual Primary Care Advocacy Projects

I loved the aspects of advocacy the most – while practicing primary care post-residency, it inspired me to constantly consider the social determinants of health for my patients and to go the extra mile in advocating for their needs.  – Quote from our alum

In addition to their clinical practice, our Primary Care Residents are extremely active in advocacy and scholarship. The primary care program hosts an annual Advocacy Project, during which the residents work with community partners to develop a variety of skills to advocate on behalf of patients. Recent projects have addressed immigrant rights and de-stigmatizing treatment for opioid use disorder.


Our residents are active in regional and national medical associations. Every year, our primary care residents present research, medical education innovations and clinical vignettes at national and regional Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) meetings.