Development of a residency/MPH program

Fam Med. 2001 Jun;33(6):453-8.


Background and objectives: Public health complements the care physicians provide to patients. Few residencies, with the exception of preventive medicine residencies, offer trainees the opportunity to obtain a public health degree. The University of California, San Francisco-Fresno (UCSF-Fresno) Family Practice Program and California State University-Fresno (CSU-Fresno) spearheaded the creation of a combined residency/MPH program at the UCSF-Fresno Medical Education Program.

Methods: We developed a combined residency/MPH program that allows family practice residents to obtain an MPH degree during their residency training years. We describe the development process, which included initiation of the program, setting goals and objectives, identifying MPH course content and funding, and selecting applicants for entry into the program.

Results: The program was successfully funded, and the course content was developed. Participant selection, registration, and enrollment procedures have now been developed. Performance standards have been established, and scheduling conflicts have been addressed. The program has thus far enrolled 29 residents and faculty. Nearly one third have dropped out of the MPH component of the program, mostly because of the workload involved in simultaneous residency and MPH training.

Conclusions: Other training programs can replicate a combined residency/MPH program if a strong relationship with a nearby university offering a MPH degree can be forged. The experience at UCSF-Fresno can help guide others contemplating a combined residency/MPH program.

MeSH terms

  • California
  • Curriculum
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency / economics
  • Internship and Residency / methods
  • Internship and Residency / organization & administration*
  • Male
  • Program Evaluation
  • Public Health / education*
  • Public Health / methods
  • Schools, Medical
  • Students, Medical / psychology