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Internal Medicine

Categorical Internal Medicine Resident Program

The Internal Medicine Residency Program is a fully accredited three-year residency.  It is designed to provide practical and didactic education in the broad field of internal medicine.  Board-certified subspecialty faculty teach all of the major internal medicine specialties.  Electives are available in all of the subspecialties of medicine as well as Dermatology, Neurology, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Otorhinolaryngology, Orthopedics and Anesthesiology.  Each resident has the opportunity to become proficient in all procedures common to the internist.

The hospitals associated with the training program include Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, Midland Memorial Hospital, and Veterans Administration Medical Center in Big Spring.

The Internal Medicine Residency Program also provides primary continuity-of-care experience in the ambulatory internal medicine clinics.  Depending upon level of training, residents spend one to two - half days per week seeing their own cadre of patients in modern general internal medicine clinics.  This allows each resident to follow the evolution of disorders typically seen by the internist, to observe the response to therapy, and to understand the unique comprehensive health care needs of ambulatory patients.

Experienced full-time attending faculty supervise ambulatory clinics while providing on-site consultation and patient care discussions.  These discussions include not only patient management, but also cost effective and evidence-based medicine.

The PGY1 year is designed to provide comprehensive experience in general internal medicine. Upper level residents, the attending faculty, supervise PGY1 residents.  On general internal medicine services, the PGY1 resident has primary responsibility for patients.  The PGY1 schedule includes 15 days of vacation per year.

The PGY2 year is designed to provide the resident with increasing responsibility, which includes leading the health care team, supervising the inpatient care of acutely and chronically ill patients, and making decisions regarding a patient's need for hospitalization.  The PGY2 resident has a primary teaching role for the first year residents.  The PGY2 schedule includes 15 days of vacation per year.

The PGY3 resident is given maximum house staff responsibility in the care of general medicine and subspecialty patients.  The year is designed to increase the resident's total patient management skills.  The resident serves as a consultant and primary teaching resident for assigned junior residents.  The resident serves as a general medical consultant for other services.  The PGY3 schedule includes 20 days of vacation per year.

All residents participate in the education and supervision of third and fourth year medical students.

Residents are taught the basics of scientific research and are expected to complete at least one research project during their three years of training.  Residents who successfully complete this training program are prepared for a career in internal medicine or for subspecialty training and are qualified to take the certifying examination of the American Board of Internal Medicine.


Formal Teaching & Conferences

Didactic lectures are given daily at noon.  Lectures cover all areas of medicine including Cardiology, Pulmonary, Endocrinology/ Metabolism, Gastroenterology, Rheumatology, Neurology, Infectious Diseases, Oncology/ Hematology, and Geriatrics. Additional lectures are given in Critical Care Medicine, Radiology, Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Statistics, and Legal Issues in Medicine, Medial Ethics, and Use of Computers in Medicine, Practice Management, and Proper Coding for Insurance Purposes.  Lectures in the surgical specialties include Ophthalmology, Gynecology, Orthopedics, Urology, and Otorhinolaryngology.  Lectures related to the treatment of acute medical problems (acute myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, respiratory failure, acute renal failure, diabetic ketoacidosis, etc.) are repeated on an annual basis.  All other lectures are repeated on a biannual basis. Internal Medicine Grand Rounds are broadcast by interactive video ("Health Net") from Lubbock on a weekly basis.  The residents and other attending faculty evaluate each lecture as to content, relevance, and presentation.  Residents are required to attend no less than sixty percent (60%) of the didactic lectures.

Tumor Conference is held twice monthly at Medical Center Hospital.  All residents rotating at Medical Center Hospital are required to attend sixty percent (60%) of these conferences.  During this conference neoplastic disorders are discussed including histopathology.  Morbidity and Mortality Conference is held monthly and follows a similar format as the Tumor Conference.  This conference, like all noon didactic lectures, is held jointly in Midland, Odessa and Big Spring by interactive video and therefore a sixty percent (60%) attendance is required.  Surgical as well as autopsy material is incorporated into these conferences.  All deaths on the Texas Tech services are reviewed by the Program Director; selected deaths are discussed during monthly M&M and CPC conferences.

Morning Report is held daily on each service by either the Program Director, Associate Program Director, or a designated full-time faculty member. Teaching rounds are separate from work rounds and emphasize pathophysiology of disease as well as physical examination.  These are held after morning report and are conducted by the full time faculty.

The Internal Medicine Residency Program extensively utilizes the innovative distance learning services of Health Net that connects all four Texas Tech Medical Campuses by interactive video.  This permits sharing of conferences, grand rounds, et cetera. Health Net also provides equipment and facilities for distance medical consultation through its state of the art TeleDocTM equipment . Most medical conferences are broadcast and held simultaneously in Odessa, Midland, and Big Spring.  Some medical conferences are shared throughout the Texas Tech system.  Residents during their consultation service rotations will have experience in long distance tele-consultation using technology which is among the most advanced available anywhere.  The Health Net system allows Texas Tech to most efficiently utilize faculty expertise that is spread out geographically over five hundred (500) miles


The Texas Tech University Health Science Center at Permian Basin has a medical library that is accessible seven days per week.  The library has a wide range of reference books and journals as well as educational audio-visual resources.  The library references can be accessed after hours via computer and modem.  MEDLINE searches are available; other computerized literature searches are also available. An interlibrary loan system is available with most requests being received within 72 hours.

Appointment & Promotion

Residents are appointed and promoted on the basis of their knowledge, experience and ability to master the clinical as well as attitudinal skills required for each level of the program.  The program is approved for a total of thirty-six (36) residents.  Each resident is provided appropriate interaction with residents from the other disciplines at the institution (Ob/GYN and Family Medicine). as well as 3rd year medical students.  In addition, each resident is provided a full time faculty advisor to assist with research, career development, problems and questions that may arise.  All full-time faculty members are available to each resident for additional support and advice.  The Department of Psychiatry works with the teaching program.