Thank you for your interest in our residency program! As chief residents for the 2020-2021 academic year, we would like to highlight a few distinguishing features of our city and program.
Life in Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh is a revitalized medium sized cosmopolitan city with a vibrant lifestyle for over 2.6 million metropolitan area residents. Located between the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers, Pittsburgh offers affordable living, attractive safe neighborhoods and many indoor and outdoor activities. Pittsburghers are particularly proud of their championship caliber professional sports teams, thriving technology and robotics economy,
Several articles have outlined the renaissance of Pittsburgh and have documented the rising profile of our city as both a great place to live and as a destination for travelers:
Pittsburgh is divided into distinct neighborhoods, each with their own character. The most popular with our residents over the years have been Lawrenceville, Shadyside, Squirrel Hill, Oakland, the Strip District, Mt. Washington, Downtown, East Liberty and the South Side. Each have distinct nightlife options, breweries, distilleries, festivals, farmer’s markets, restaurants and personality. Only a short drive from the city, the suburbs of Pittsburgh including the North Hills, Fox Chapel, Sewickley and Mount Lebanon offer top-rated schools and further entertainment options. Living a good life in Pittsburgh on a resident salary is possible for both single residents and those with families!
The UPMC system is comprised of more than twenty-five hospitals with greater than 5,000 licensed beds in western and central Pennsylvania. As residents, we physically rotate at five hospitals (all within a 4-mile radius). While we are certainly a large academic program with rotations at multiple quaternary referral centers, reading studies remotely from smaller community hospitals within the UPMC system provides an excellent case mix of both extremely rare and high level as well as common pathologies.
At our main academic site, UPMC Presbyterian, we see complex pathology, rare surgical pathologies, complex interventional radiology cases, level 1 trauma, and multi-visceral transplants. In addition, we are fortunate to rotate frequently at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, ranked amongst the best children’s hospitals in the country by US News and World Report. This diverse case mix combined with attendings’ willingness to teach allowed our program to win the “Most Best Case Submissions” award at the American Institute of Radiology and Pathology course in Washington, DC in 2016 and 2017 as well as receive the “Radiologic Pathology Correlation Course Best Case of the Year Award” in 2018.
We truly feel that the education at UPMC rivals any program in the country. Our volume is extraordinarily high and we are a “resident-driven” as opposed to “fellow-centric” department. You will work hard here and as a result, you will become an excellent radiologist. Due to our reputation, volume, and case complexity, as well as our extensive alumni network, our residents are highly sought after by private practice groups and major academic institutions around the country. In fact, many current and past academic chairs as well as those in leadership positions in national radiology organizations have trained at UPMC.
New Radiology Department
We are not in the basement! Completed in April 2015, the nearly $50 million renovation to the Department of Radiology places us in the main lobby of UPMC Presbyterian Hospital. Our central location allows for a more patient-centered imaging experience and is more conducive to collaboration with clinical colleagues. Our new department is equipped with a beautiful resident lounge with attached call-room, state-of-the art conference room, ergonomic reading rooms and five new angiography suites. Our outreach extends even to the point of having various reading rooms embedded in the hospital clinics, for example ENT and Neurology. This fosters close clinical collaboration with our colleagues and provides opportunities to correlate our imaging findings alongside our surgeons and patients.
The spirit of traditional “Radiology Rounds” by referring clinicians lives on here at UPMC. While our medical and surgical colleagues are frequent guests in the reading room, we have also instituted a radiology consult program with our internal medicine colleagues. Here, senior residents review cases and exam indications while acting as the team’s primary imaging consultant across multiple imaging modalities. Beyond that, we have a dedicated R3 in which residents participate on rounds discussing imaging findings with our ICU teams. Our physical presence on the floors and in the clinics emphasizes the added value of our radiologists and provides a prime educational opportunity for developing important skills as an imaging consultant. We are also proud to play an active role in medical student education for the University of Pittsburgh with multiple lectures, USMLE board reviews, and hands-on medical student events throughout the academic year. If the idea of being an actively engaged, clinically-oriented radiologist appeals to you, know that UPMC radiology is committed to supporting this model of practice.
The responsibilities of first year residents outside of the normal work day are minimal, allowing them to focus on reading and learning the fundamentals of radiology. R2 residents carry more of the call-burden as the R3 residents are excused from all call responsibilities after February for board studying. We utilize a night float system with three residents working on any given night; responsibilities consist of preliminary interpretations of STAT in-patient cross-sectional studies.
Fourth Year Curriculum
At UPMC, we encourage our residents to focus their training in their particular area of interest. We offer a 16 month training pathway for dual certification in nuclear radiology, and enable R4s to build their schedule around mini fellowships in their area of interest.
Residents may also dedicate this time to further their research projects or participate in our informatics or 3D printing curriculum. We also provide opportunities for rotations abroad, which is particularly popular amongst those who want to widen their perspective on global health.
The UPMC Department of Radiology is one of the largest in the country, with over 200 clinical and research faculty. We currently rank among the top with respect to NIH research funding and several residents were awarded 2018 RSNA research grants. In the 2017-2018 academic year, 79% of our residents were involved in at least one research project; our cumulative tally over the last 12 months was 17 publications, 34 national/regional presentations and 13 book chapters. We also have one of the first well-established 3D Printing laboratories in the country which is used for teaching, research and clinical applications. Although we have many research-minded residents in our program, no one feels obligated to participate. Many residents participate in educational activities such as lecturing for medical and physician assistant students or teaching point-of-care ultrasound skills to global health residents. In addition, there are many opportunities for quality improvement and administrative roles including safety and graduate medical education committees.
We have six UPMC affiliated moonlighting sites throughout the city and local suburbs. Approximately 30 weekly shifts are assigned to R2-R4 residents. Moonlighting responsibilities are freely traded among residents and are not mandatory, though they are highly coveted. Two of our sites, the UPMC center for Sports Medicine and the Lemieux Sports Complex, house practice facilities for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Penguins.
We wish you all the best and thank you for your interest!
2020-2021 Chief Residents