The UCLA Internal Medicine Primary Care Program is expanding! We are excited to announce that we will be adding a second Primary Care track in collaboration with Olive View-UCLA Medical Center (our county hospital) in addition to our existing UCLA Primary Care track with the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System (GLA). Training in each of our tracks will include continuity clinic within an UCLA Department of Medicine community office practice plus an additional continuity clinic experience at either the Veterans Administration Homeless Patient Aligned Care Team (VA-HPACT) or Olive View-UCLA Medical Center Primary Care Medical Home (OVMC-PCMH). Highlights of our program include a theme-based ambulatory primary care block curriculum, the high quality inpatient education that has come to be expected of training at UCLA, and the option to participate in UCLA’s global health pathway.
The UCLA Internal Medicine Primary Care Program is a 3-year residency leading to eligibility for Board Certification in Internal Medicine. In addition to the outstanding training our residents receive in our established primary care track based within the UCLA and VA systems, we are excited to offer a new UCLA track in collaboration with Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. These two complementary primary care training tracks will each offer 6 residency positions (for a total of 12 positions). The pairing of UCLA Health with the VA and Olive View-UCLA allows our residents to experience the rich diversity of patient populations, medical conditions, and health care systems available in Southern California.
Residents in both primary care tracks participate in inpatient and subspecialty rotations at all of our affiliated medical centers in order to obtain the best complement of clinical training. They will receive appropriately balanced exposure to everything from bread-and-butter outpatient medicine to care of the most medically complex inpatient. Both tracks participate in a shared primary care curriculum that includes additional focused time in continuity clinics and primary care specific ambulatory rotations. This enhanced curriculum is designed to produce tomorrow’s leaders in primary care medicine. Our block and longitudinal curricula provide expanded training in community health, patient-centered and team-based interprofessional care, quality improvement, health care systems, policy, and advocacy. Many of our IM Primary Care residents participate in the pathways also available to UCLA categorical residents including: Global Health, Medical Education, Health Systems and Management, and ProSTAR Research. The UCLA Internal Medicine Primary Care Program is affiliated with the UCLA Division of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research, which is internationally recognized for its research on improvement of quality of care, health disparities in underserved and minority patient populations, medical ethics, and women’s health. Our distinguished faculty is dedicated to providing mentorship for our primary care residents to become leaders in clinical care, education, research, and health systems.
All primary care residents will participate in two continuity clinics throughout residency, and they will spend an equal amount of time at each site so as to become quickly familiar with both clinics. Based on the track, the clinic pairing will be either: 1) UCLA Health-Santa Clarita with Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, or 2) UCLA Health-Santa Monica with the West Los Angeles VA-Homeless Patient Aligned Care Team (HPACT).
Residents will care for patients in two community-based practices specially designated for the education of primary care residents. Blending two primary continuity clinic experiences prepares our residents to care for patients from diverse socioeconomic levels, cultural backgrounds, and different healthcare system resources.
UCLA Health- Santa Clarita & Olive View-UCLA Medical Center Track:
- UCLA Health Santa Clarita:
- A great site for learning community primary care, UCLA-Santa Clarita patients have commercial insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid/MediCal PPO (“straight MediCal”).
- Mental health integration into the primary care clinic.
- Olive View-UCLA Medical Center
- OV-UCLA Medical Center is a well-established LA County/Department of Health Services facility.
- Patients at OV-UCLA struggle not only with health issues and complications of common outpatient conditions (diabetes, hypertension, and so on), but also other issues of poverty and low health literacy.
- Curricular themes: social determinants of health, community medicine, humanism
UCLA Health-Santa Monica & West Los Angeles VA Interprofessional Academic Homeless Patient-Aligned Care Team (HPACT) Track:
- UCLA Health-Santa Monica:
- UCLA-Santa Monica offers a fantastic opportunity to learn community primary care in a well-insured patient population. A well-established and productive clinic, this has been the primary continuity clinic since the inception of the UCLA Internal Medicine Primary Care Track.
- West Los Angeles VA Inter-professional Academic Homeless Patient Aligned Care Team (IA-HPACT):
- West Los Angeles HPACT serves the largest veteran homeless population in the entire VA system incorporating a housing first model
- Patient care is provided utilizing a team-based, inter-professional patient-centered medical home model
- Social work and mental health integration into primary care teams
- VA Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education for inter-professional training. IM residents learn with trainees from nurse practitioner, clinical pharmacy, social work, psychology, and psychiatry disciplines.
- Curricular themes: inter-professional teamwork, humanism, social determinants of health
Inpatient training, particularly in the R2 and R3 years, focuses on care of patients with common internal medicine diagnoses in community-based facilities, including facilities dedicated to the care of the medically underserved. For more specific site information, please see the “Inpatient” tab under the Categorical website (link here
Inpatient Training Sites:
- Ronald Reagan-UCLA Medical Center – Consistently ranked one of the top five hospitals in the nation and the best medical center in the western United States by U.S. News & World Report, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center is at the cutting edge of biomedical research and is a world leader in complex tertiary care and organ transplantation.
- Santa Monica-UCLA Hospital – A community teaching hospital, Santa Monica-UCLA Hospital is staffed fully by UCLA physicians and is a key site of inpatient care for patients of UCLA Healthcare. It provides a great venue for learning bread-and-butter medicine.
- Olive View-UCLA Medical Center – Olive View-UCLA provides care regardless of ability to pay for the medically indigent, low income, uninsured residents of the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys. Patients here present not only with bread-and-butter diagnoses, but also late manifestations of conditions for which they have not sought care.
- West Los Angeles VA Medical Center – The West LA VA is the largest, most complex healthcare system within the Department of Veterans Affairs, offering services to veterans residing in Southern California and Southern Nevada.
Olive View is also home to a a UCLA-affiliate Internal Medicine training program that has had a longstanding relationship with the UCLA Internal Medicine training programs. More information about Olive View's Internal Medicine residency is available at: www.uclaoliveview.org
The UCLA Internal Medicine Primary Care Program takes tremendous pride in an innovative and dynamic curriculum that focuses on the foundations of what makes a high-quality general internist and adapts to the changing needs of the field.
We provide our trainees with the broad clinical exposure needed to tackle the myriad conditions that they will see in practice. We meanwhile ensure our physicians-in-training understand the health systems and factors that influence their patients’ health. We also encourage our trainees to pursue their areas of interest and support them on these paths.
Thus, we ensure that our graduates are not only trained to provide excellent care, but are also poised to lead change at various levels within the health care system. Here are the key features of our training program:
In our 4+2 schedule, residents are assigned to a designated outpatient experience, largely continuity clinic, for 2 consecutive weeks, followed by 4 weeks of other rotations. This significantly increases total clinic exposure (up to double the total continuity clinics of other programs), and the increased consistent presence in clinic facilitates developing a continuity panel at each site. The “+2 weeks” also provide time to incorporate subspecialty clinics, additional creative curricular teaching/experiences, and administrative half-days. Residents also get significant outpatient time outside of the “+2” weeks as outlined below (“Selectives”).
Outpatient Clinical Curriculum
We provide a strong foundation in clinical knowledge and skills for the primary care doctor. All residents receive ample exposure to the “classic” internal medicine specialties, such as cardiology, endocrinology, etc. All residents also have structured experiences in fields crucial to outpatient medicine, such as women’s health and dermatology, and non-medical subspecialties, such as orthopedics and podiatry. There are conferences and lectures every “+2” week, and of course each clinic offers learning experiences based on its rich patient population (see “Training Sites” tab).
Other Major Curricular Components
Themes. We have carefully devised and fleshed out educational themes that extend beyond “classic” clinical medicine and that inform the broad, systems-based perspective that we believe all primary care doctors should possess. These themes build on each other and broaden throughout residency as trainees develop as practitioners. For example, PGY-1 residents learn about clinic structures and community asset mapping, PGY-2 residents discuss panel and practice management, and PGY-3 residents delve into the broader topic of health systems.
Primary Care Medicine Blocks. Each year, we carve out 4 weeks of rotation time to bring together all trainees in a single class for a Primary Care Medicine, or PCM, Block. These blocks are protected time for in-depth learning in primary care and incorporate didactics, site visits, and group projects. Since the entire class joins together for PCM blocks, this creates an even greater sense of community within our program.
Areas of Expertise. Through unique clinical experiences, mentoring, and projects, we encourage our residents to develop areas of “primary care expertise” in areas of interest.
Selectives. In addition to “+2” weeks, our trainees have time to explore clinical interests in the form of Selectives. These Selectives can take the form of the “Unique Rotations” described on the “Additional Opportunities” tab, or they can take other forms based on learners’ needs.
UCLA is home to one of the nation’s strongest faculty in Health Services Research, and our residents regularly link with these researchers to carry out projects. We also link PGY-1 residents with upper-level resident mentors. And above all, our clinical faculty provide formal and informal mentoring from the beginning to the end of residency.
While we provide significant outpatient training for our residents in training, we maintain a careful balance between inpatient and ambulatory experiences to ensure a well-rounded clinical training experience. PGY-1 residents spend approximately 6-7 months on inpatient services (general medicine wards or critical care). Thereafter, residents spend 4-5 months per year on the inpatient side to further develop and maintain these skills while their outpatient time grows. We opt for particular inpatient rotations that best fit our goals of developing high-quality primary care physicians. Of note, residents in both tracks get inpatient exposure to all our teaching hospitals to better understand these diverse health systems and patient populations.
Unique Rotations and Experiences
We hope to give you an innovative and cutting-edge curriculum that keeps pace with the evolving role of the Primary Care Physician. We offer numerous unique experiences – both clinical and non-clinical – that build upon a traditional clinical curriculum and cater to your individual interests and goals. With access to three large healthcare organizations – UCLA Health, VA Greater Los Angeles, and Olive View-UCLA Medical Center – we have an expansive range of opportunities that will meet your needs. These options include, but are not limited to:
- Global Health and Indian Health Service rotations (see Pathways)
- Medical Spanish Course
- UCLA CARE HIV and VA HIV/Hepatitis clinics
- Women’s Health
- Mental Health
- Sports Medicine and Orthopedics
- Complementary and Alternative Medicine, East-West Medicine
- LA County Public Health
- Home Visits with our Community Health Workers
- Palliative Care/Hospice Medicine
- Adolescent/Teen and Young Adult
Members of the UCLA IM-Primary Care Program are encouraged to participate in our Pathways program. The Pathways are available to all Primary Care, Categorical, and Med-Peds residents and provide mentorship, didactic teaching, specialized rotations, and/or guided projects in a trainee’s area of interest. Residents apply to Pathways during their first year of residency. Current Pathways include:
Research and Quality Improvement
To complement our strong clinical curriculum, all of our UCLA IM-Primary Care residents participate in academic and/or quality improvement (QI) projects. Our Primary Care residents are given protected time to work with their colleagues on these projects, and many residents go on to perform additional research and QI work with faculty support and via available research electives. The program will fund conference and travel fees for residents who present their work at regional and national conferences. Below is a sampling of projects and publications from our Primary Care residents.
Recent Resident Publications/Presentations :
- EHR health maintenance module
- Improving EHR medication reconciliation
- Integration of debriefing and goals of care training into an inpatient Heme/Onc rotation and its effects on provider fatigue
- Improving obesity management at UCLA
- Point-of-care testing for febrile illness in Cambodia
- Stigma among MSM with HIV in Los Angeles
- Health awareness campaign on resident physician burnout
- UCLA MyLife, a 16-week comprehensive digital health program promoting healthy behaviors in patients at early risk for lifestyle-related chronic diseases
- Formal mechanisms for connecting patients with physicians interested in LGBT healthcare
- Primary care utilization by and sources of primary care for HIV-positive patients at UCLA
- Glenn BA, Chen KL, Chang LC, Lin T, Bastani R. Skin Examination Practices Among Melanoma Survivors and Their Children. J Cancer Educ. 2016 Feb 9.
- Nakhasi, A, Bell, S. G., Passarella, R. J., Paul, M. J., Dredze, M., & Pronovost, P. J. (2016). The Potential of Twitter as a Data Source for Patient Safety. Journal of patient safety.
- Noren, EM, M.D., Kuo, A., M.D., Amin, J., M.D., El-Farra, N., M.D., Ptaszny, M., MD. Mercury Poisoning as a Mimicker of Pheochromocytoma. American College of Physicians National Meeting, May 6, 2016; Washington, D.C.
- Sriram, N. "A Surprising Case of Metastatic Colorectal Cancer with Metastasis to the Toe." SGIM Annual Meeting, Hollywood, Florida, May 2016.
- Chen K, Ma J; Ohanian A, Mikhail N. Not Just a Loose Tooth: Parathyroid Adenoma Presenting as Facial Brown Tumors. Poster session presented at American College of Physicians Southern California Region I Chapter Meeting; 2015 Sept 26; Marina Del Rey, CA.
- Chen K, Ma J; Ohanian A, Mikhail N. Not Just a Loose Tooth: Parathyroid Adenoma Presenting as Facial Brown Tumors. Poster session presented at American College of Physicians National Meeting; 2016 May 5-7; Washington, D.C.
- Haynes CA and Diamant A. Interns on Night Float—Improving Training, Support, and the Educational Experience. SGIM Regional Meeting, San Francisco, CA January 2016.
- Haynes CA and Zhang A. A Mind Gone Viral—An Unusual Case of Acute Encephalopathy. ACP National Meeting, Washington, DC May 2016.
Get to know our residents by clicking on the pictures below
|Neha Agarwal, M.D., MBA
||Omar Bakr, MD, MPH
||Azra Bhimani, MD
||Carl Burton, MD
||Katherine Chen, MD
|Theresa Cheng, MD, JD
||Alan Chu, MD, MPH
||Daniel Croymans, MD, MBA
||Delani Gunawardena, MD
||Christine Haynes, MD, MPH
|Emily Huang, MD
||Joshua Khalili, MD
||Gregory Lam, MD
||Atul Nakhasi, MD
||Erin Noren, MD
|Cindy Nguyen, MD
||Joo Yeon "Jenny" Ryu, MD
||Benjamin Seligman, MD, PhD
||Nandita Sriram, MD
||Shih‐Fan Sun, MD
|Sae Takada, MD, PhD
||Ariana Wilkinson, MD
Please direct any inquiries to our Program Coordinator:
NRMP # 1956140M0
NRMP # 1956140M1
|Mina Ma, MD, FACP
Associate Program Director, UCLA Internal Medicine Residency Program
Director, Primary Care Medicine Program
Clinical Professor, General Internal Medicine
|Soma Wali, MD, FACP
Chair, Department of Medicine
Director, UCLA-OVMC Track
|Neil Paige, MD, MSHS
Chief of Primary Care
VA Greater Los Angeles
Director, UCLA-VA Track
|Colin Robinson, MD, MPH
Assistant Program Director
|Brianna Cowan, MD
Assistant Program Director
|Arash Nafisi, MD
Assistant Program Director
Key Faculty - UCLA Santa Clarita/ Olive View Medical Center
Colin Robinson, MD, MPH
Arash Nafisi, MD
Assistant Program Directors - Primary Care Track
Hrishikesh Belani, MD
Mufaddal Dahodwala, MD
Karen Kim, MD
Lisa Kransdorf, MD, MPH
Gifty-Maria Ntim, MD, MPH
Michael Rotblatt, MD
Heather Schickedanz, MD
Sural Shah, MD, MPH
Sahar Soleymani, MD
Laxmi Suthar, MD
Hijab Zubairi, MD, MPH
Key Faculty - UCLA Santa Monica/ West LA VA
Brianna Cowan, MD
Assistant Program Director - Primary Care Track
Carole Warde, MD
Adam Richards, MD
Dana DeLellis, MD
Allison Diamant, MD
Jessica Liao, MD
Thomas Mattimore, MD
Ben Waterman, MD, MBA
George Yen, MD