About the Residency Training Program

The Vanderbilt University Pathology Residency Training Program is accredited to offer four years of education and training in combined Anatomic and Clinical Pathology (APCP4), four years of education and training in combined Anatomic Pathology and Neuropathology (APNP4), three years of education and training in Anatomic Pathology (AP3) or three years of training in Clinical Pathology (CP3).   Up to six months of a program can be dedicated to full time research, without affecting the length of training, as long as other requirements are met.  The program also encourages residents to participate in extended curricula to include research opportunities during residency in the Physician Scientist Track, where the trainee may engage in research under the mentorship of an established investigator.  Although trainees are encouraged to apply for funding for such experiences, departmental resources may be requested for research training.  Nearly all residents participate in smaller research projects during spare time during training.  Departmental research grants for such small projects with Department faculty are also available.

The main medical complex is comprised of Vanderbilt University Hospital, The Vanderbilt Clinic, Monroe Carell, Jr. Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital and the adjacent Nashville Veteran's Affairs Medical Center.  Residents therefore spend nearly all of their core training on one campus, contiguous with the main Vanderbilt University campus 1.5 miles south of Downtown Nashville. Core APCP4 training also includes one month at the Nashville-Davidson County Medical Examiner's Office and one month each in Dermatopathology and Cytogenetics at Vanderbilt Medical Center 100 Oaks, a suburban outpatient facility.

The Department is responsible for all diagnostic pathology services for patients of Vanderbilt University Medical Center.  The Department also operates an active and growing reference laboratory that serves clients in 48 states. 

A distinguishing feature of Vanderbilt Pathology training is our ongoing development of Diagnostic Management Teams, which leverage Vanderbilt's institutional strengths in genomics and bioinformatics to provide experience for trainees in delivering cost-effective and timely solutions for complex diagnostic questions.   A Diagnostic Management Team regularly convenes experts from multiple disciplines both to support rational test ordering and also to integrate test results from multiple sources into comprehensive consultative reports.  Diagnostic Management Teams are Vanderbilt's solution to the soaring complexity of the modern diagnostic menu, and to the increasing ability to improve health care by targeting specific patients with specific therapies at the appropriate time.

The faculty of the Department includes nationally and internationally recognized scholars, leaders and visionaries with interests in patient care, teaching and laboratory management.   The faculty has grown considerably in the past few years, with the addition of dozens of new junior and senior faculty members. Rotations at the VA and the Nashville-Davidson County Medical Examiner's Office are similarly staffed by expert faculty with experience and interest in resident education.

The Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology is under the direction of Chair Samuel A. Santoro, M.D., Ph.D., who is responsible for all clinical, research, and educational endeavors of the Department.  The Residency Program serves 25 residents under the direction of Robert D. Hoffman, MD, Ph.D., who as Vice Chair for Graduate Medical Education also provides administrative oversight for trainees in the Department’s twelve clinical fellowships, with the able support of the staff of the Graduate Medical Education Office.  The Department's clinical enterprise comprises five of the Department's divisions: Anatomic Pathology, Laboratory Medicine, Hematopathology, Renal Pathology/Electron Microscopy and Neuropathology.  Each division is directed by nationally and internationally recognized members of the faculty.

Questions about the Residency Program should be directed to the Graduate Education Office at pathres.prog@vanderbilt.edu .

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