A central mission of the Brigham psychiatry residency is to help each trainee thrive professionally and personally while living one's truest self.
"I have found that Brigham psychiatry is a place where: 1) Calling a senior resident or attending at 2am while on call is somehow a pleasant, educational, and often fun experience. 2) There is freedom to unearth, form, and refine your own vision of scholarly pursuit in psychiatry, yet feel supported in your independence. 3) You can venture over and over into the rich churning sea of the greater Harvard/Boston academic community, and know you have a safe haven to return to."
-Matt Baum, MD, PhD, DPhil, PGY4
Sustainability is a major obstacle facing specialties across the practice of medicine. The rates of burnout and suicide among physicians are alarming and further compound problems in patients’ access to medical care. Caregivers, parents and especially women are at risk of falling victim to the "leaky pipeline,” dropping out of medicine and science before they ever get to a state of thriving. Similarly, only until we actively create a safe, supportive, and intersectional environment will we build a healthy and diverse workforce that represents all of the patients we care for. As we train the next generation of academic psychiatrists and leaders we must be intentional about preserving the valuable perspectives of identities that have not historically been supported to reach their maximum potential as a physician.
What is needed for one resident to thrive may be very different from what another resident needs to thrive. That being said, as recently described by Hyman and Doolittle, we believe there are several universal concepts essential to resident thriving:
Program Director investment in each resident's professional and personal success
Unwavering support by program directors who will always "have your back"
Closed-loop response to resident concerns
Fostering a supportive, friendly, and encouraging work environment
Giving residents clinical autonomy while cultivating a safe space to ask for help
Celebrating professional and personal achievement in medicine
Prioritizing non-medical parts of life
Finding meaning outside of medicine
Adopting a growth mindset
Pursuit of the intellectual aspect of medicine
Hyman JH, Doolittle B. Thriving in Residency: a Qualitative Study. J Gen Intern Med. 2022 Jul;37(9):2173-2179.
Salary & Benefits
(estimated for the 2023-2024 academic year)
PGY1 - $78,540
PGY2 - $82,500
PGY3 - $86,350
PGY4 - $90,750
Residents are entitled to a comprehensive benefits package. Details can be found on the Mass General Brigham Graduate Medical Education website.
All residents receive an annual $500 education stipend.
Residents working late, or on-call at the main Brigham and Women's Hospital are entitled to a free meal of their choice at the Garden Cafe main cafeteria.
All residents receive preloaded cards to purchase coffee and food at Panera Bread at BWH main campus.
Catered breakfasts and lunches from local favorite eateries are frequent!
Wednesday lunch at Brigham Psychiatric Specialties (outpatient clinic)
Thursday breakfast at in-person didactics
Friday lunch at Brigham and Women's Faulkner Hospital (BWFH)
Residents who are presenting an abstract, poster, oral presentation or receiving an award at a regional or national conference are eligible for funds to support conference registration and travel.
During the six months of psychiatry PGY1 residents will take evening "short-call" at Brigham and Women's Faulkner Hospital (BWFH) approximately once every two weeks. PGY1s will work directly with the on-call PGY2 resident to gain experience in the assessment and management of acute psychiatric issues in the emergency department, on the inpatient unit, and on medical/surgical floors. This short-call experience will be an addition to the program as of the 2022-2023 academic year, in response to resident feedback requesting more experience prior to being independently on-call overnight as a PGY2 resident.
PGY2 residents will take four weeks of Sunday-Thursday night-float (8:30pm - 8:30am) at BWFH spread throughout the academic year. PGY2s will also share weekend on-call at BWFH. Weekend on-call shifts are typically Friday 6pm-8am, Saturday 8am-Sunday 8am, Sunday 8am-Sunday 9pm. PGY2 residents average one weekend shift monthly. PGY2 on-call includes consultation to patients in the emergency department, admissions to and management of issues on the psychiatry inpatient unit, and occasional consults to the medical/surgical floors.
PGY3 on-call is nearly identical to the PGY2 on-call schedule, except residents work at the main Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) where they primarily serve as psychiatric consultants in the emergency department and occasionally to patients on medical/surgical floors.
PGY4 residents do not take in-house call, however they do provide on-call support to the PGY2 and PGY3 residents as the "PGY4 Backup." In this role, PGY4 residents are the primary point person for overnight questions from the on-call residents. Additionally, they serve as backup if for any reason the on-call resident needs in-person help (high patient volume, multiple acute consults at once, patient phone calls). We want residents to feel comfortable asking the PGY4 backup resident to come in if needed. As such, PGY4 backups who come in to the hospital are paid a competitive rate for each hour worked. This wellness measure has been well-received by the residents and helps us promote the culture to "never worry alone" and "never be afraid to ask for help."