Our Preventive Medicine program aims to train a pipeline of physicians in public health and general preventive medicine with a focus on maternal health outcomes in underserved communities. Trainees will be equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to integrate clinical service delivery with community prevention. By the end of this 2-year program, trainees will be prepared to lead maternal health programs, study maternal health outcomes and inform practices for addressing disparities and delivering care in medically underserved communities. 

Components

Our maternal health preventive medicine curriculum and training include the following components:

Analytic, Research and Quality Improvement (QI) Skills on Health of Populations: 

By completing a Master's degree program at BU School of Public Health (BUSPH) and an array of Preventive Medicine curricular offerings, you will achieve knowledge and skills in epidemiology and biostatistics which will be used to study and evaluate population health services. The research and analytic competencies are solidified and developed through mentored research projects, as described below.

  • Master’s Degree in Population Health Research at BUSPH: You will be equipped with key analytic and research skills by enrolling as a part-time student in either the Epidemiology or Translational and Implementation Sciences degree program.
  • Interdisciplinary Seminars: Include academic seminars and research in progress presentations that will prepare you to produce, present, and fund scholarly projects that inform community-based prevention programs, policies, and strategies needed to improve the physical and social environment in which people live. You will present your ongoing scholarly project focused on factors affecting maternal health outcomes during these conferences.
  • Quality Improvement training workshop series: You will learn about the quality and patient safety movement and the conceptual framework and methodology of QI.
  • Public Health Literature Appraisal Course (Journal Club): You will learn how standard research techniques are applied to address specific research questions and lead discussions covering such issues as study validity, results, and applicability to clinical practice and public health programs.

Teaching, Leadership, Advocacy and Administrative Skills for Public Health and Preventive Medicine

  • Public Health Agency Practicum: You will work with key stakeholders at the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) to identify and carry out a project related to maternal health outcomes.  In this practicum, you will learn about program planning, public health interventions designed for solving disparities in maternal health, engagement of community organizations, program evaluation and operations/budgeting. Example projects include participating in task forces or committees, assisting in report production and presentations, grant preparation, focus groups and community work, and shadowing key staff for exposure to BPHC operations. This 320 hour practicum can be carried out over one 3-month block or longitudinally overspread through the 2 year fellowship. Pedagogy of teaching series: Future preventive medicine physicians must not only possess research skills, but also must be effective teachers. You will develop working knowledge of core principles of adult learning theory, curriculum development, evaluation, and learner feedback. 
  • Interprofessional Leadership in Healthcare Program: This five-month longitudinal program will equip you with the knowledge and skills to effectively lead interprofessional teams. You will participate in weekly live, online classrooms and engage with self-paced online learning modules featuring interactive exercises, videos, and journals. 
  • Community Engagement in Research Series: You will participate in the BU CTSI Community Engagement Program (CE Program) which includes seminars, workshops, courses and networking with CE and community leaders. The CE Program seeks to: develop new and sustain existing community-academic partnerships; expand community-engaged research capacity for organizations, neighborhoods, and systems and the people who live, work, and play within these contexts to advance health equity; and disseminate best practices for community-engaged research approaches. 

Preventive Medicine Lecture Series

You will be exposed to a comprehensive range of topics in preventive medicine and public health. Topics include the following: preventive practice through motivational interviewing, tobacco and alcohol control policy, domestic violence, evaluation of population-level preventive interventions, health reform, refugee health, preventive care for immigrant populations, social determinants of health, outbreak investigations, global women’s health, LGBTQIA health, prevention for homeless people, preconception care and counseling, postpartum depression, prevention of preterm birth, efforts to reduce maternal mortality (e.g. Hear Her campaign) and others. The lectures happen once a month throughout the 2 years of training. 

Social Determinants of Health Preventive Medicine Curriculum

Due to the deep and pervasive nature in which social determinants affect health, you will learn strategies to address these determinants at the individual and population health levels. This will be achieved through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and interdisciplinary experiential learning experiences.

Primary Care Advocacy Training Rotation

You will work in a team-based environment to identify a timely and relevant issue affecting underserved communities, develop an advocacy strategy to address it and finally implement this strategy by engaging community partners. This will enhance your skills to effectively advocate for structural changes at the health system and at the community level.

Clinical Preventive Medicine and Maternal Health Care

You will achieve a strong foundation in the components of clinical prevention and maternal health care through didactic and clinical practice experiences:

Continuity clinic

You will work in a continuity clinical site for one session per week (half day).  This will be either at one of BMC’s primary care clinics, or at one of the BMC HealthNet community health centers, most of which are Federally Qualified Health Centers. This will be an opportunity to get to know the community on a deeper level through direct clinical care, and also to understand some of the challenges that contribute to maternal health outcomes.  Your continuity clinical site placement will offer opportunities for interdisciplinary teamwork and partnerships, in addition to QI and Preventive Medicine projects. 

Clinical Preventive Medicine Rotations

You will rotate through programs related to preventive medicine clinical practice and maternal health including Project Respect (integrative prenatal clinic for people with substance use disorder), BMC QI rotations, Occupational Health and BMC’s “Birth Sister” doula program

One of the core clinical Preventive Medicine rotations will be with the Boston Public Health Commission’s Boston Healthy Start Initiative (BHSI): BHSI provides direct support to pregnant and parenting women, children and families through care coordination, connection to resources, health education, and advocacy. During this rotation, you will be paired with a “Family Partner” that supports women and families to collaboratively learn about:

  • Discussing information related to healthy  pregnancies, infant health, and  parenting such as prenatal nutrition, safe sleep, breastfeeding and infant  feeding, infant safety, and child development
  • Connecting women to resources and programs that help them access food, education, employment, housing, child care, and other support as needed
  • Helping to coordinate medical care and other services such as father engagement and support, home visiting nurses, WIC nutritional support, legal services, immigration support, etc.

Interdisciplinary Virtual Reality Curriculum in Emergency Maternal Health Care in Rural Settings: We have created an interdisciplinary, virtual reality environment where you will learn and practice decision-making and problem-solving skills to respond to maternal health emergencies in rural settings.  This is a great opportunity to expand your skillset and consider how you might approach clinical challenges differently in a less urban setting, potentially with less immediate access to specialist care. 

Application Process: The program will be accepting applications through ERAS and participating in the Standardized Acceptance Process (SAP) administered by the American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM). Applicants have until January 21, 2022 to register for the SAP. Learn more about the SAP and the SAP schedule.