Frequently Asked Questions about Pediatric Residency
Acceptance at Indiana University School of Medicine for residency is highly competitive because of our excellent programs, location and benefits. Applicants should be a good fit for a large program. Attributes include independence, confidence and energized by many different opportunities. We look for:
- Commitment to patients and serving others
- Hard-working with a sense of duty/responsibility
- Active learners who thrive by doing and getting involved
- High personal expectations with a drive to improve
- Caring and respectful of others
- Team players
The intern class size, with 25 categorical residents, is a large program but has a personalized feel with individualized experiences, personal connections and meaningful mentorships. Among the many benefits of a large program include scheduling, call trades, leave switches, vacations and more. The IU School of Medicine residency programs in pediatrics also provides a diverse social network with frequent resident outings.
Because Riley is the only children’s comprehensive care hospital in Indiana, residents receive training in a wide range of pediatric problems. For most residents, this is the ideal way to learn and thrive. Our residents are independent self-starters, are adaptive to different settings, and agree that they develop and master skills faster in a system of active learning and diverse experiences.
Approximately 75 percent of core rotations are at Riley Hospital for Children, which is the main central campus base for the residency program. To add experience with the underserved and other unique populations, residents spend 1-2 months at Eskenazi Hospital and 2-3 months at Methodist Hospital. These hospitals are both downtown Indianapolis on the same central campus. Finally, we believe in individualizing the curriculum by resident’s goals, so those interested in primary care have some additional selective opportunities in community clinics, the suburban IU North hospital, and Bloomington outpatient experience. Others may choose more specialty care sites, research, global health settings, or community experiences.
Riley Hospital has two general pediatric hospitalist teams, along with a variety of subspecialty-focused teams. Teams vary in size and structure by service from larger teams (such as Pulmonary and Heme-Onc) where 4-5 interns/residents provide care for 20-25 patients. Other specialties such as Endo, GI, ID, Renal, etc. have smaller teams of 2-3 residents who care for inpatients while also providing consultations. On-call teams are combined from different specialty services, with effort made to keep continuity with a resident’s assigned team patients.
Two as a PGY1, two as a PGY2, and three as a PGY3. These seven months are for you to tailor to your individual needs. Faculty advisors and program directors help residents design their experiences to explore careers options, evaluate fellowship interests and/or get involved in projects to expand their future career plans. We are committed to being creative, flexible and supportive so you get what you need for your individual path.
Most inpatient rotations for interns are q5 ‘short calls’, assisting with admissions in the late afternoon/evening. This ends at 9 pm so interns can have time at home and not miss out on daily rounds and conferences. Intern electives have weeks without call and a few back-up / jeopardy calls. We do expose interns to some night call experiences as well— PGY1s have a total of four weeks of night float, divided into two blocks. Interns also have some night calls while covering rotations like Hem-Onc, NICU and normal newborn.
We strike a good balance in support for time off and rest, while preparing interns for admissions, deliveries, and events that are unique to nights and call. Our overall call schedule is comparable to most large academic centers; call is an important time to learn, to develop independent decision-making, and to participate in deliveries and procedures. We have resident teams on call who work together and 24/7 in-house faculty support for teaching and assistance.
IU School of Medicine pediatric residents are exposed to a very diverse patient population in Indianapolis. We have one of the largest urban African-American populations in the U.S. The growing Latino population is a major part of most Eskenazi clinics, and one continuity clinic is housed at a fully bilingual office. Referral patients from around Indiana include rural patients and a large Amish population. There are several immigrant groups from Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and a large Burmese population as well. Our patients vary from those that are well-educated and well-informed to uninsured low-income patients. Residents here see all types of patients—from the common to the rare and from a variety of cultures and backgrounds.
We attract outstanding students from around the U.S. and international schools. Our current residents come from medical schools in 25 states. In addition, IU School of Medicine is the largest medical school in the United States, and we have a small but strong core of our top IU School of Medicine students who go into pediatrics. In addition we select a few outstanding international medical graduates, many of whom have gone on to become Chief residents and top fellows. We usually have a few osteopathic-trained residents and MD/PhDs in each class.
As with most pediatric programs, about 75 percent of our residents are women. Those who are married represent 30-50 percent, and some have families. We have several couples in the program and work hard to coordinate scheduling for them. Our diversity reflects most pediatric numbers with a growing number of African-American, Latino and under-represented minority residents in the program. We have many faculty and residents who are part of the LGBTQ community and actively support making our program welcoming to all.
We appreciate the hard work done by our residents and therefore provide ample vacation opportunities. PGY1s and 2s have three weeks of vacation, while PGY3+s have four weeks. Additionally, all residents have a five-day holiday block over Christmas or New Year’s holidays. PGY1s start their intern year one week early to assist with transition into residency, and therefore get an extra week of vacation between the PGY1 and PGY2 years.
The IU School of Medicine Pediatric Residency program has excellent ABP Board pass rates that are well above the national average. The three-year average is over 90 percent.