Training Physician-Scientists: A Model for Integrating Research Into Psychiatric Residency
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- Back, S.E., Book, S.W., Santos, A.B. et al. Acad Psychiatry (2011) 35: 40. doi:10.1176/appi.ap.35.1.40
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The number of physicians engaged in research careers has declined significantly over the past two decades. Physicians with in-depth experience and formal training in research design, development, implementation, statistical analysis, and interpretation of scientific information are rare.
In response to this shortage, the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) launched an NIH-funded research track in 2006 to address the institutional, financial, and regulatory barriers to research training during residency. The primary aim was to incorporate a research track within a 4-year psychiatric residency program for physicians. A secondary goal was to extend recruitment into earlier phases of medical training by offering summer research fellowships to medical and undergraduate students.
This article describes the program including core mechanisms of training, recruitment, and outcomes to date.
The program provides a model to effectively integrate research training during residency without increasing the number of years of residency training. The training components described herein should be exportable to other psychiatric residency training programs and potentially other specialties of medicine.