What Are the Best Medical Residency Programs?

Residency programs are the next professional development step after earning your Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree. You'll receive paid specialty training after successfully participating in the National Residency Match Program. Following are descriptions of some of the best residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). Read on to see what makes these programs stand out. Schools offering Health Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Are Characteristics of the Best Medical Residency Programs?

Completing your residency can take 3-7 years, so you may want to look for programs located in areas where you would like to live for the duration of your training. You should look for high-ranking medical schools, as well as their affiliated hospitals, that offer specific programs in your medical specialty. According to the American Medical Association (AMA), choosing a highly respected and well-known program can help when pursuing competitive fellowships after completing your residency.

You may also look for residency programs that have funding support from federal or other entities. Unique clinical training facilities or training-abroad opportunities can also be of interest.

What Are Three Top Medical Residency Programs?

Johns Hopkins University (JHU) in Baltimore, MD

In 2019, U.S. News and World Report ranked JHU as the second best medical school in the country for research. You can find 29 residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) at this university.

For example, the General Internal Medicine Residency Program is an internal medicine track at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. Bayview hosts the National Institute on Aging and National Institute on Drug Abuse units of the federal National Institutes of Health.

You can prepare for careers in primary care, public health, geriatrics or other medical subspecialties. The 3-year residency program involves significant community-based, ambulatory and elder house call training. Other residency program options at Johns Hopkins include:

  • Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine Residency
  • Child Neurology Residency
  • Medical Genetics Residency
  • Nuclear Medicine Residency
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology Residency
  • Otolaryngology Residency
  • Pathology - Anatomic and Clinical Residency
  • Pediatric Surgery Residency
  • Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Residency
  • Thoracic Surgery Residency

University of California in San Francisco (UCSF)

UCSF's medical school ranked third in primary care and fifth in research in 2019, according to U.S. News and World Report. The Department of Medicine's graduate medical education program was chosen for ACGME's Educational Innovation Project. UCSF offers three internal medicine residency programs and a broad range of ACGME-accredited fellowships through the department's various divisions. Approximately 40% of third-year internal medicine residents participate in the Global Health Elective Program to obtain training abroad in site locations that include China, Kenya, and Saipan.

You can train at the UCSF Medical Center, Veterans Administration Medical Center, San Francisco General Hospital and UCSF/Mount Zion Medical Center, as well as clinics, public health centers and rehabilitation facilities. These residency programs are offered by the Department of Medicine:

  • Categorical Track Residency
  • UCSF Primary Care Track Residency
  • San Francisco General Primary Care Track Residency

University of Chicago (UC) in IL

The Pritzker School of Medicine tied for 16th in research and 18th for primary care in 2019, according to U.S. News & World Report. The medical campus includes the Bernard A. Mitchell Hospital, Comer Children's Hospital, Duchossois Center for Advanced Medicine and Chicago Lying-in Hospital.

Pritzker's Institute for Translational Medicine is affiliated with the federal National Institutes of Health's Clinical and Translational Science Awards program to advance the rate at which research impacts medical practice. The school offers 24 ACGME-accredited residency programs.

For example, you might train through the emergency medicine residency, which is one of the nation's oldest programs of its kind. In this program, you would train in three Level I trauma centers, each in a different socioeconomic environment.

The University of Chicago Aeromedical Network (UCAN) provides helicopter transportation staffed by flight nurses, physicians and EMS pilots for critical patients among area institutions. Other residency options you might consider include:

  • Anesthesiology Residency
  • Dermatology Residency
  • Diagnostic Radiology Residency
  • General Surgery Residency
  • Ophthalmology Residency
  • Pathology - Anatomic and Clinical Residency
  • Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Residency
  • Urology Residency

Ten Other Top Medical Residencies

College/UniversityInstitution TypeLocation
Massachusetts General HospitalHospitalBoston, MA
Mayo ClinicHospitalRochester, MN
Duke University HospitalHospitalDurham, NC
University of Pennsylvania Medical CenterHospitalPhiladelphia, PA
University of Michigan Medical CenterHospitalAnn Arbor, MI
University of Washington Medical CenterHospitalSeattle, WA
Stanford University HospitalHospitalStanford, CA
Vanderbilt University Medical CenterHospitalNashville, TN
Emory University HospitalHospitalAtlanta, GA
New York University Medical CenterHospitalNew York, NY

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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