wiscRD

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Do you have to do a fellowship directly after residency, or can you work for a while and go back? Is it more difficult to get into a fellowship if you don't apply directly after residency? I am thinking about the HPSP program, which requires 4 years of active duty after residency. I am wondering if it is possible to do an internal med residency, complete my HPSP commitment, and then apply to a civilian fellowship once I am out of the military. Thanks!
 
Mar 31, 2010
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Not to thread hijack, but I was wondering the same thing about the National Health Service Corps Scholarship. I know I want to go into pediatrics, but I was thinking I might want to do a fellowship. Could I get the scholarship, work as a pediatrician for 4 years and then go back and do an Oncology (or something else, I don't know yet, but oncology has sparked my interest as of right now) fellowship?
 

Phil Dunphy

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I don't think there is any problem with this, especially as you have a valid reason for not going straight on to fellowship. There is no rule or anything that forbids it, you'll just have to compete with people coming straight out of residency so that might make it tough.

I'll defer to a current resident/fellow or someone more experienced to correct me if I'm wrong.
 

koan

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It's definitely possible, and I think very common. I know a few fellows in pediatric critical care who worked as general pediatricians for a number of years (or worked in loan repayment programs like NHSC) before applying.
 

AGLAIA

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My husband's partner took sabbatical to do a fellowship this year and he has been in practice for 20+ years.
 
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wiscRD

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Thanks everyone for the quick responses!

Total180- How ironic that you were thinking of the same question! Don't worry, you didn't hijack the thread - getting your questions answered is what this is all about. I never understand when people get mad about that. Good luck with everything!
 
Nov 17, 2010
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Wisc, the mil will pay for a fellowship as well. In fact many, MANY docs go this route. I am speaking about USAF providers as i worked for the AF level credentialing office. (AFCCVO)

Yes you will owe more time back after the fellowship, but hey free education, travel (paid for) and bonuses for every year you stay an AF doc after your commitment ends. And let me tell you Specialists make $$$$ in bonuses.

If you have any direct questions/want more info PM me.
 
Jul 11, 2009
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You can do a fellowship (or second, or third fellowship) at any time really, you just need to be accepted to the program.
 

scpod

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It's not hard to get a fellowship if you do not apply right after residency....
I think that kind of depends on the fellowship. If you plan on doing Cards, GI, Pulmonary/CC, etc. after IM you pretty much have to apply during residency. I don't know of anyone, although there may be some, who have done that. I know of some folks who applied during 3rd year, instead of second, and had to do a year of locum tenens or something first.
 
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wiscRD

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Thanks everyone! I am not in medical school yet, so obviously things could change, but at this point I am thinking of going into Endocrinology. I am currently a dietitian (and work with a lot of patients who have diabetes) and I have always loved the endo portions of my human biology classes. I have heard that endo is in high demand (which will only go up with the ever-increasing rate of diabetes) and few people go into it since the pay is not as high as over specialties - more office visits and fewers procedures. We'll see what happens once I get to my 3rd year and start clinicals.
 

fozzy40

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I think that kind of depends on the fellowship. If you plan on doing Cards, GI, Pulmonary/CC, etc. after IM you pretty much have to apply during residency. I don't know of anyone, although there may be some, who have done that. I know of some folks who applied during 3rd year, instead of second, and had to do a year of locum tenens or something first.
You're probably right in that most people apply for IM based fellowships during residency. I have met many people who do a chief year, locums, and/or research if they are not successful initially. From a PM&R perspective, I know that it's not uncommon for people to practice and go back for a fellowship in spinal cord injury, brain injury, sports medicine, and pain.

So it could be specialty dependent.