Dr. Patrick’s first experience working at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) came during his medical school training rotations at VA medical centers throughout Southern California. When it came time for his residency training, Dr. Patrick chose to stay at VA: For two years, he’s cared for Veterans at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System.
He said in a video that he wanted to work at VA “first and foremost” for the patients. He also noted that a striking feature of his job is the interconnectedness of care, driven by VA’s electronic health records system.
“The medical record is pretty universal,” Dr. Patrick explained. “So, having worked in medical school at other VAs it was really easy to transition over here. And when patients come from other facilities, it takes me no time to know what happened at the other facilities.”
Choose VA to train as a physician
VA is the largest provider of graduate medical education and training in the nation, and the place where thousands of new physicians like Dr. Patrick opt to start their career. They come to VA as a result of strong partnerships with medical schools and universities facilitated by the VA Office of Academic Affiliations, which aims to shape the next generation of healthcare providers and enhance Veterans’ quality of care.
In the 2017 academic year, 43,565 medical residents, 24,683 medical students, 463 advanced fellows and 849 dental residents and students received some or all of their clinical training at VA, according to the office. There are a variety of options to support healthcare providers at any level of education, from one-year training assignments to multiyear residency and fellowship programs.
Choose VA for comradery
During his intensive training at VA, Dr. Patrick said he developed strong relationships with his fellow medical students and residents, who bond at work and during personal time.
“We’re very close,” he said. “We’re routinely out to dinner with each other. We go through this experience and, especially in your class, you get to know each other very well and you spend a lot of time with one another. There are many people that I will be at their wedding and they will be at my wedding.”
Choose VA today
Dr. Patrick chose a VA career because of its support for graduate medical education and the enduring connections he’s made with other physicians in training.
See if a VA career as a physician is right for you too.