or "Combined Internal Medicine & Pediatrics" is a medical specialty which trains its doctors to be board certified in both Internal Medicine
. After medical school
, doctors typically train for four years dividing time equally between the two specialties making Med-Peds physicians
able to take care of patients of all ages.
Combined internal medicine-pediatrics (Med-Peds) residency programs have existed since 1967 , with its origins beginning as early as 1949 in the form of a two-year rotating internship. The specialty was initially established to provide broad-based training in primary care, but programs now offer a curriculum that prepares residents for primary care
, hospital medicine
, or education in the subspecialties
Internal Medicine physicians, or internists
, train three additional years after medical school leading to Board Certification in Internal Medicine. Pediatricians
train three additional years after medical school to board-certify in Pediatrics. Med-Peds physicians train for four years and can be "double-boarded"
for both these specialties. Since there is frequent crossover of disease and treatment between children and adults, Med-Peds training enjoys the consolidation of these two specialties into four years. The performance of Med-Peds physicians on the two national board exams is equal to their one-specialty (specific internist or pediatrician) counterparts.
Med-Peds physicians are heavily trained for primary care. A recent study on post-residency training showed that 61% of Med-Peds physicians pursue primary care as a career, 18% enter subspecialties, and 17% pursue hospital medicine. Many subspecialties are available to a Med-Peds physician, with the current most popular being Infectious Disease, Critical Care, Allergy/Immunology, and Endocrinology.
Many people question the differences between the specialties of Med-Peds and Family Practice
. The difference tend to mostly rely on the locations where physicians receive their training; however, some general differences exist. Family practitioners typically receive formal obstetrical
, and surgical
training, while Med-Peds doctors do not. Family Practice residents train for three years, while Med-Peds residents train for four. This extra year is thought to make Med-Peds physicians more proficient at treating and diagnosing more complex diseases, including more emphasis on critical care
medicine. A trend also seen is that an increasing percentage of Med-Peds physicians treat inpatients (patients in the hospital) as opposed to an outpatient clinic setting.