So what's it like to actually be a resident at Virginia Mason? As noted in our mission statement, we want to develop exceptional physicians, fulfilled individuals, and innovative leaders. In multiple ways, we make a real effort to respect residents’ time, improve their work experience, and encourage them to lead rich lives in and out of the hospital.
“Virginia Mason has been an incredible place to do my residency training and it provides a balance of academic medicine with service in a community hospital setting. I am grateful for the organization’s focus on quality improvement and how that has shaped my training. Also, the beauty of the Pacific Northwest is unmatched” — Jonathon Sargent, Class of 2019
Our internal medicine residency is a small, close-knit program. Residents get to know each other in and out of the hospital, often going on hikes, meeting for trivia night, and sometimes even taking trips together. There are also opportunities to build relationships with residents in other programs. Many of the Virginia Mason radiology and anesthesia residents rotate through medicine wards their intern year.
Both the program leadership and attending physicians are easily accessible, supportive, open to new ideas, and heavily invested in resident education. Attendings provide a nice balance of support and autonomy, giving residents graduated responsibility as their clinical skills improve.
As there are very few fellows, residents work directly with subspecialty attendings. Many are consistently among the most highly-rated teachers. On inpatient months, subspecialty attendings are amiable and accessible for consultation. Electives provide further opportunities for working one-on-one in an outpatient environment. Whether planning a career in general internal medicine or aiming for fellowship training, these relationships can be incredibly valuable.