Throwback Thursday Classic Post – Tips to Get Selected for GME

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I’ve participated in the last four Graduate Medical Education Selection Boards (GMESBs) and would like to offer tips for people looking to match for GME in the future.  We’ll cover general tips and those specific for internship and residency/fellowship:

General Tips

  • Money is getting tight for permanent change of station (PCS) moves at BUPERS.  I think you can increase your chances of matching in GME by being local, or at least on the same coast, as the GME program where you want to train.  Keep this in mind when you are picking your Flight Surgery (FS), Undersea Medical Officer (UMO), General Medical Officer (GMO), or post-residency assignments.
  • If you want to give yourself the best chance of matching, you need multiple peer-reviewed publications.  Any publications or scholarly activity have the chance to help, but having multiple peer-reviewed publications is the goal you should be trying to reach.  Anything that is peer-reviewed counts, including case studies in Military Medicine which are, in general, pretty easy to get accepted for publication.
  • Be realistic about your chances of matching.  If you are applying to a competitive specialty and you’ve failed a board exam or had to repeat a year in medical school, you are probably not going to match in that specialty.  There are some specialties where you can overcome a major blight on your record, but there are some where you can’t.  If this is applicable to you, the residency director or specialty leader should be able to give you some idea of your chances.  Will they be honest and direct with you?  I’m not sure, but it can’t hurt to ask.
  • If you are having trouble matching in the Navy for GME, you may have a better chance as a civilian.  By the time you pay back your commitment to the Navy, you are a wiser, more mature applicant that some civilian residency programs might prefer over an inexperienced medical student.  You’ll also find some fairly patriotic residency programs, usually with faculty who are prior military, that may take you despite your academic struggles.

Tips for Medical Students Applying for Internship

  • Do everything you can to do a rotation with the GME program you want to match at.  You want them to know who you are.
  • When you are applying for internship, make sure your 2nd choice is not a popular internship (Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, etc.).  If you don’t match in your 1st choice and your 2nd choice is a popular internship, then it will likely have filled during the initial match.  This means you get put in the “intern scramble” and you’ll likely wind up in an internship you didn’t even list on your application.
  • Your backup plan if you don’t match should be an alternative program at the same site where you eventually want to match for residency.  For example, in my specialty (Emergency Medicine or EM) we only have residencies at NMCP and NMCSD.  If someone doesn’t match for an EM internship at NMCP or NMCSD, they will have a better chance of eventually matching for EM residency if they do an internship locally, like a transitional internship.  Internships at Walter Reed or any other hospital without an EM program are quality programs, but it is much easier to pledge the fraternity if you are physically present and can get to know people, attending conferences and journal clubs when you can.
  • You need to think about what you will do in your worst-case scenario, a 1-year civilian deferment for internship. Many of the medical students I interview do not have a plan if they get a 1-year deferment.  I think every medical student needs to do one of two things.  Either they should pick 10-15 civilian transitional year internships (or whatever internship they want) and apply to those just in case they get a 1-year deferment, or they should just plan to apply to internships late or scramble if this unlikely event happens to you.  Most medical students do not grasp the concept that this could happen to them and have no plan to deal with it if it does.  It is an unlikely event, especially if you are a strong applicant, and you can always just scramble at the last minute, but this is an issue that every medical student should think through.  If you are going to just scramble at the last minute, that is fine, but it should be an informed choice.

Tips for Officers Applying for Residency or Fellowship

  • You should show up whenever you can for conferences and journal clubs.  Again, you want them to know who you are and by attending these events when you can you demonstrate your commitment to the specialty and their program.
  • Always get a warfare device (if one is available) during your FS, UMO, or GMO tour.  Not having it is a red flag.

Fully Funded Occupational and Environmental Medicine Fundamentals Course – Portsmouth, VA – 9-13 SEPT 2019

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The Navy and Marine Corps Public Health Center OEM Division is excited to announce the next offering of the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Fundamentals course September 9-13 2019 in Portsmouth, VA!

The course is intended for physicians, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners that do not have formal Occupational Medicine training (i.e. Occupational Medicine residency or experience) who will be practicing in an Occupational Medicine clinic or have significant Occupational Medicine-related workload. The course will cover history of Occupational Medicine, workplace hazards, risk communication, Navy Occupational Health programs, worksite visits, available resources, and will include clinical case break-out sessions.

Non-local students will be FULLY FUNDED BY NMCPHC for travel. There is no fee for the course itself.

We are applying for CME/CNE and anticipate the course will be approved for 31 credit hours as it has been in the past.

NMCPHC will coordinate with the Regional Program Managers & OEM Specialty Leader to ensure course seats are given to those according to clinic needs, responsibilities, and assigned job requirements.

Please visit the NMCPHC Occupational Medicine Fundamentals Course webpage
for more detailed information and student registration request:

For future planning purposes, we will be offering 2 OEM Fundamentals courses in FY20- dates TBD.

(Also, there will be an Occupational Health Nurse (OHN) Fundamentals Course in FY20- date TBD)

Please read the above webpage carefully to answer your questions.

USUHS School of Medicine Dean’s Annual Faculty Teaching Awards

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Nominations for the School of Medicine Dean’s Annual Faculty Teaching Awards are due 15 JUL 2019. If you know of someone deserving of this award, the info on the nomination process is contained in these two documents:

2018-2019 Dean, SOM Annual Faculty Teaching Awards

Dean’s Annual Teaching Award – Recipients and Description

USU Dean’s Annual Faculty Teaching Awards – Nominations due NLT 15 July 2019

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On behalf of the Dean, you are invited to submit nominations for the Dean’s Annual Faculty Teaching Awards. The purpose and nomination/selection criteria are established in the documents below. The School of Medicine has many outstanding educators and this is an opportunity for them to be recognized.

Please consider submitting a nomination NLT 15 July 2019, as per the below guidelines. A list of previous winners is also below.

Dean’s Annual Teaching Award – Recipients and Description

2018-2019 Dean, SOM Annual Faculty Teaching Awards

Association of Military Surgeons of the United States (AMSUS) Call for Abstracts and Presenters

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The 128th Annual AMSUS meeting will be held at the Gaylord National Harbor, 2­6 December 2019. The theme of this year’s AMSUS continuing education meeting is “Transforming Healthcare through Partnership and Innovation”. This meeting provides a neutral platform for military, academia, industry and civilian health professionals to share successful ethical, and optimal professional healthcare practices and research findings and outcomes.
The call for meeting abstracts including panel sessions, lectures and posters has opened and healthcare providers are strongly encouraged to submit an abstract to present the current and planned best practices of their clinics and departments. Areas of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Improving Health: The Art and Science of Medicine and Surgery – these clinically relevant presentations encompass the entire spectrum of care delivered by physicians, nurses, allied health personnel and healthcare extenders
  • Leadership in Healthcare, Global Health, Operational Readiness and Humanitarian Support – topics include but are not limited to leading during a changing healthcare landscape, global health, operational readiness and training of medical forces, natural disaster response, family readiness, patient transport and transfer
  • Trauma Care, Behavioral Health, and TBI – the latest research in trauma and casualty care, behavioral health and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Advances in the Delivery of Healthcare­ – these presentations highlight the
    increasing complexity of healthcare administration and business operations
    while providing leading edge solutions in areas such as: health IT, medical
    logistics, the business of healthcare, HR talent management and shared

Follow instructions for submission guidance attached. All abstracts must be submitted online by 3 June 2019 and are required to meet CME/CE accreditation standards to be accepted. Presentations should be free of commercial bias and approved through local COC and PAO.

Here are the forms: