Emergency medicine residency pathways for MD/PhD trainees: A national cross-sectional study of physician-scientist training programs

Karen Cyndari, Libby White, Philip A. Mudd, J. Priyanka Vakkalanka, Sydney Krispin, Kelli Wallace, Megan Schagrin, Nicholas Mohr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Combined clinical and research training is common in residency programs outside emergency medicine (EM), and these pathways are particularly valuable for combined MD/PhD graduates planning to pursue a career as a physician-scientist. However, EM departments may not know what resources to provide these trainees during residency to create research-focused, productive, future faculty, and trainees may not know which programs support their goal of becoming a physician-scientist in EM. The objective of this study was to describe research training and resources available to MD/PhD graduates in EM residency training with a focus on dedicated research pathways. Methods: This study was a cross-sectional inventory conducted through an electronic survey of EM residency program directors. We sought to identify dedicated MD/PhD research training pathways, with a focus on both resources and training priorities. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize survey responses. Results: We collected 192 survey responses (69.6% response rate). Among respondents, 41 programs (21.4%) offered a research pathway/track, 52 (27.4%) offered a research fellowship, 22 (11.5%) offered both a residency research pathway/track and a research fellowship, and two (1.0%) offered a dedicated EM physician-scientist training pathway. Most programs considered research a priority and were enthusiastic about interviewing applicants planning a research career, but recruitment of physician-scientist applicants was not generally prioritized. Conclusions: Some EM residency programs offer combined clinical and mentored research training for prospective physician-scientists, and nearly all residency programs considered research important. Future work will focus on improving the EM physician-scientist pipeline by optimizing pathways available to trainees during residency and fellowship.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere10960
JournalAEM Education and Training
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2024


  • clinician-researcher
  • clinician-scientist
  • dual degree
  • emergency medicine
  • internship and residency
  • physician-scientist
  • research
  • workforce


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