About Harvard OEMR

The Harvard Chan OEMR is a fully ACGME-accredited 2-year training program for physicians leading to board-eligibility in Occupational and Environmental Medicine, one of the three specialties of Preventive Medicine. The HSPH OEMR was among the first such programs in the United States, and is recognized as one of the best Occupational and Environmental Medicine residencies worldwide. We emphasize rigorous training, excellence in both clinical occupational and environmental medicine, cutting-edge research, and a diverse balance of unique environmental and occupational health opportunities. Supervision comes from an outstanding nationally- and internationally-renowned faculty with a history of producing specialists who have become leaders devoted to improving environmental and occupational health in academia, government, industry, health care, and non-governmental organizations.

We offer two pathways to Board Certification in Occupational Medicine: a 2-year Categorical Program and a 1-year Complementary Pathway.

  • The Categorical Program can be entered after a transitional internship or a full clinical residency, such as internal medicine. We strongly encourage those from underrepresented backgrounds and military applicants to apply. The Categorical Program requires 2 full years of training beginning each year on July 1. The first year consists of two semesters of full-time didactic coursework at HSPH leading up to the Masters of Public Health degree with a concentration in occupational and environmental health by June of the following year. Please click 45-credit MPH for details regarding the HSPH MPH degree.
  • The Complementary Pathway is available to those who already hold other board certification and have at least two years of career experience in OEM. For additional information about the Complementary Pathway, please contact us directly.

Students who already hold an MPH degree attend courses as special students as needed to supplement their degree.

The MPH coursework—undertaken from September to December and February to May—is complemented by continuity clinic in the same months. Residents also complete clinical rotations in July, August, January, and June of their first year and begin to plan a research project with the guidance of OEMR faculty members.

The second year consists of multiple, several-month-long clinical rotations in various settings, including sites at:

  • Cambridge Health Alliance
  • Occupational and Environmental Health Network (OEHN)
  • Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Tufts Medical Center Traveler’s Health Clinic
  • MIT Environmental Health Services
  • Massachusetts Department of Public Health
  • and elective rotations available from other government agencies, such as the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The second year also involves the completion of a research project of publishable quality.

During both years, OEM residents attend Grand Rounds, career and research seminars, and weekly Board Review sessions. Second-year residents are responsible for conducting Grand Rounds with area experts in occupational and environmental medicine. They also have opportunities to attend regional and national occupational health scientific meetings.

The OEMR has a strong track record of residents producing excellence in research. Since 2000, HSPH OEM residents have won a total of 21 ACOEM research awards, and have spoken on the podium at 12 of the last 15 AOHC meetings. Since 2005, HSPH OEM residents have authored/co-authored over 50 publications resulting from their training.

Other unique opportunities for OEM residents include the HSPH Initiative for Productivity and Health Management (IPHM). Productivity and Health Management seeks to maximize the health of the workforce and its dependents for the mutual benefit of employees and their employers. The emerging field recognizes the interrelation of employees’ health and well-being with employee satisfaction and an enterprise’s health care costs affected by all of the following: healthcare expenses, absenteeism, disability, turnover, and productivity. The HSPH IPHM, housed within the OEMR, has held two successful conferences related to these issues, one in 2010 and one in 2012. Residents attend IPHM Conferences as an integral part of their training and have the opportunity to network with the conference faculty and attendees, who are international thought leaders in a variety of fields. For more information about the IPHM, please click here.