Internal Medicine Residency

Dr. Rick Pels

A Message from Rick Pels, MD

Chair, CHA Department of Medicine
Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

Thank you for exploring training with the Department of Medicine at Cambridge Health Alliance. Through our Harvard Medical School affiliated programs, we have prepared health professionals for a wide variety of satisfying careers for over three decades.

At Cambridge Health Alliance you will find a highly integrated, community-oriented health care system that is a national model of care. We celebrate our ethnically and culturally diverse community and staff. We promote a respectful, socially conscious, and intellectually stimulating environment for health care and education. Our vision statement speaks of our passion and commitment: we seek to be the foremost academic public health care system in the nation. Over the past decade, we have received recognition that speaks to the breadth of our service and academic mission.

The Department of Medicine provides comprehensive primary care and specialty services in a model designed to meet the needs of the community. Department services are available at more than 15 primary care sites (all certified as Patient-Centered Medical Homes) and two hospital campuses. Patients and staff benefit from the use of clinical computing through a state-of-the-art electronic medical records system that is shared in common by all ambulatory and hospital sites. All full-time department members have faculty appointments at Harvard Medical School. In addition to resident teaching, many of our faculty teach medical students in pre-clinical courses and in a highly innovative longitudinal year-long Cambridge-Harvard Integrated Clerkship.

The Department is structured in divisions, which include: Cardiology; Dermatology; Endocrinology; Gastroenterology; Geriatrics; Hematology/Oncology; Hospital Medicine; Nephrology; Neurology; Occupational/ Environmental Medicine; Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine; and Rheumatology. Clinical specialties include a Multidisciplinary HIV/AIDS center and Tuberculosis clinic. Primary care internal medicine is delivered in a team-based model that integrates mental health and substance use care.

The philosophy of the department - and of the Alliance as a whole - is to create a community of caring that extends to patients, staff, and trainees. A culture of safety underpins clinical care and training and performance improvement efforts. Wellness initiatives are valued and supported. Training programs are outstanding academically and clinically, yet offer a flexible environment that allows residents to explore individual interests. Our residents benefit from community-based training in an integrated public health care system with access to tertiary care training opportunities at other Harvard-affiliated institutions. Throughout this system our diverse faculty and house staff are committed to improving the health of the public. This shared dedication, paired with an environment of respectfulness, allows us to pursue true academic and clinical excellence.

Thank you again for your interest in the Department of Medicine at Cambridge Health Alliance. I am confident that you will appreciate the uniqueness of our institution and training programs and the sincerity of our commitment to excellence.