Opportunities to participate in clinical, basic science, and health services research are readily available in our program. Research opportunities are important for many residents, especially those pursuing competitive fellowships. Many of our graduating seniors pursue and are accepted into subspecialty fellowships, usually in the Los Angeles area. All of our subspecialty divisions are active in clinical research, with many research opportunities available at Olive View. For example, our hospital is a national “Center of Excellence for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Chagas Disease,” and our Cardiology Division is actively involved in research on the prevalence and cardiac effects of Chagas. Our Hematology-Oncology Division is involved in multiple studies on breast cancer (e.g., testing for BRCA1/2 in the underserved population), and our General Internal Medicine Division is partnering with our Podiatrists on several studies to treat diabetic ulcers including novel gene therapies. This is a small sampling of the clinical research within the Olive View Department of Medicine.
While some of our subspecialty divisions are also involved in basic science research (e.g. Rheumatology, Nephrology), we have many more opportunities for basic science and clinical research at our sister hospital at the UCLA Westwood campus. In fact, the Program Directors at Olive View and UCLA maintain a catalogue of all the UCLA researchers for just this purpose. Olive View housestaff can choose world-class researchers at UCLA for research opportunities. We find this to be the best of both worlds – clinical training at Olive View and opportunities for research at both Olive View and UCLA. In addition, each house officer is assigned a faculty mentor to help with his or her professional (research and/or clinical) pursuits.
Olive View is well known for its clinical teaching and academics. As a part of the UCLA consortium of academic medical centers, our residents are responsible for teaching third- and fourth-year medical students. Notably, UCLA medical students have voted the Olive View inpatient clerkship as the best inpatient experience of all seven UCLA-associated teaching hospitals for 10 of the last 12 years! We have a strong commitment to providing an outstanding experience for medical students, and therefore we evaluate our applicants for a genuine interest in teaching.
We have several daily didactic sessions for our housestaff:
- Noon Conference covers the basics of general internal medicine andsubspecialty medicine, and also includes monthly Journal Club (evidence-based medicine and statistics), Grand Rounds, Morbidity & Mortality reports, and EKG conference and more. We have a separate Curriculum Committee that monitors the evaluations of all the lectures, which we use to maintain a high standard.
- Ambulatory Medicine Conference (“chalk talks”) encompasses practical outpatient topics, which are 30-minute focused clinical presentations by faculty and senior residents for housestaff during the Ambulatory Medicine rotation.
- Daily Report is run by our Chief Residents for housestaff on the ward and consult rotations. The Chiefs find interesting and instructional cases, and discussions are educational and collegial, not a “pimping” session. Toward the end of each case, there is substantial faculty participation as well. Our morning reports are considered one of the highlights of our program.
The residency program is very involved in local and national academic professional societies such as the American College of Physicians (ACP) and the Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM). <!–In fact, our Program Director, Dr. Soma Wali, is the current governor of the ACP Southern California Region 1 Chapter, and–> We are especially involved in ACP activities for Southern California Region I. Because of the abundance of interesting clinical cases at Olive View, many of our interns and residents present posters and/or oral presentations at these meetings. The program pays for registration, airfare and lodging.
The Olive View-UCLA Program has an active academic advising and professional mentorship program. Housestaff meet with the program directors and core faculty on a regular basis to review performance and discuss strategies for improving the educational experience. Mentors are available to housestaff to assist in career development and planning, whether in general or subspecialty medicine. The program also sponsors a professional development series to engage housestaff in fellowship planning, CV writing, and job searching.