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Preventive Medicine

Introduction to the Preventive Medicine Program 

UMass Chan Medical School has offered residency training in preventive medicine and public health since 1977. The program resides in the Department of Family Medicine & Community Health, which is also home to the Worcester Campus MPH Program. Ours is a two-year training program that has maintained full ACGME accreditation since its inception. Over the decades, there have been changes in ACGME and MPH requirements but our program has maintained a steady focus on career development. The specialty of preventive medicine provides an exciting opportunity for physicians who are interested in developing skills in epidemiology, biostatistics, health policy and management, planning and evaluation of health services, social and behavioral determinants of health and disease, environmental and occupational health, and clinical prevention. Our preventive medicine residents become specialists who are trained to promote health and reduce the risks of disease, disability, and death in individuals and populations. 

The goal of the training program is to prepare graduates with the requisite knowledge, skills, and experience to assume leadership roles in the field of preventive medicine and public health.  In order to meet the challenge of providing trainees and fellows with appropriate focus in a field that is very broad, trainees are encouraged to pursue one or two areas in depth while developing basic analytical and problem-solving skills applicable to all areas. Trainees have ample opportunity to develop expertise through learning experiences in clinics, community health centers, health policy organizations, city, state and federal public health agencies, community-based organizations, and research groups that abound in Massachusetts. The Preventive Medicine Residency Program is designed to be a two- year program in which academic and practicum experiences are offered concurrently throughout the two years. The program attempts to strike a balance between the diversity of residents’ educational interests and the need for a common core of skills and knowledge.  The program provides flexibility in resident schedules and a wide array of training sites along with a clearly defined set of core requirements and performance expectations. 

As part of the residency training, trainees are enrolled in the Worcester Campus MPH Program. This program is offered on the UMass Chan Medical School campus, in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. The MPH degree is granted by the School of Public Health and Health Sciences at UMass/ Amherst.  The MPH Program is accredited by the Council on Education in Public Health (CEPH).  


Prior to an appointment in the Preventive Medicine Residency Program, applicants must have successfully completed at least 12 months of clinical education in a residency program accredited by the ACGME, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, or the College of Family Physicians of Canada.  

Experience must include at least 11 months of direct patient care, in both inpatient and outpatient settings; six of these months must be in a primary care setting (e.g., family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, or obstetrics/gynecology.)  During the patient care experience residents are required to develop competency in the following clinical skills: 

  • Obtaining a comprehensive medical history
  • Performing a comprehensive physical examination 
  • Assessing a patient’s medical conditions 
  • Making appropriate use of diagnostic studies and tests 
  • Integrating information to develop a differential diagnosis 
  • Developing, implementing and evaluating a treatment plan 

The majority of successful applicants complete two to three years of clinical training in primary care before enrolling in the Preventive Medicine Residency Program. Interested applicants should apply through ERAS. All three steps of the USMLE must be completed before an interview can be offered to an applicant. In particular, USMLE Step 3 must be passed before applicants can be considered for an interview. Interviews are conducted from early to mid-December.  If you have questions, please contact the administrative coordinator, Linda Hollis.  She can be reached at 774-442-6499 or  The program director, Jacalyn Coghlin-Strom, MD, MPH, is happy to speak with interested applicants. She can be reached at 774-442-5615 or  

Below are some useful links regarding our Preventive Medicine Residency Program:

Worcester Campus MPH Program

Public Health Practice online MPH Program

The American Board of Preventive Medicine

ACGME Preventive Medicine Competencies

ACGME Milestones

UMass Chan Preventive Medicine Residency Mission Statement, Goals and Objectives

Clinical and Practicum Training Sites 

Click here to view the Graduate Medical Education benefits associated with a position in our program: