Frequently Asked Questions

1. What sets your program apart from other family medicine residencies?

The Duke Family Medicine Residency is an outpatient-focused program, with an emphasis on leadership, population health, and strong clinical skills.

Our residency is a unique program that offers traditional family medicine training, as well as experiences ranging from leadership roles (from the community to state and national positions), to community-engaged population health research. Every resident gets formal leadership training.

If you have an interest in strong outpatient training, clinical leadership, population health and health care innovation, ours is definitely a program worth considering.

2. What is the call schedule for residents?

First-year residents do not take overnight calls on any service. Interns are placed on a night float system while on some inpatient rotations, which is similar to many other programs.

Second- and third-years have minimal in-house call. Starting in the second half of first year residents take Duke Family Medicine Center calls from home. Residents are not called in to admit patients.

3. Do you have an inpatient service?

Duke Family Medicine does not have an inpatient service. The focus is on outpatient ambulatory care. This model allows more time to spend on leadership opportunities, work on community-engaged population health improvement projects, and other personal interests within medicine. Inpatient family medicine training takes place through a unique partnership with UNC’s Family Medicine inpatient service, allowing residents to spend three months experiencing a different training model during second and third years.

4. How are your residents involved in leadership?

Residents assume a variety of leadership roles — at the Duke University Medical Center, at the state level, and nationally. Our program is designed to train leaders for ambulatory clinical teams, population health improvement, and change management.

5. What is the accreditation status of the program?

We are fully accredited by the  Residency Review Committee for Family Medicine, functioning in accordance with the policies and procedures of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

6. How are family medicine residents viewed by staff in other departments of the institution?

Duke Family Medicine residents are intelligent, hard-working, with excellent skills in teamwork and collaboration. They are respected and treated as welcomed colleagues on all inpatient rotations.

7. Is moonlighting allowed?

Upon approval, second- and third-year residents can moonlight in a variety of settings, including student health and the Duke Urgent Care system.

8. What are pay and benefits?

The Duke Family Medicine Residency Program offers competitive salaries and benefits. See the Salaries & Benefits section for more information.

9. What teaching sites do you use? Is there much driving involved?

Rotations are primarily concentrated around the Duke University Medical Center in Durham, including the Duke Family Medicine Center, Duke University Hospital and neighboring Durham VA Medical Center. Rotations also occur at UNC-Chapel Hill and at Wake Med pediatric clinic in Raleigh. Residents live in all three of the regions' major cities. Most driving times are less than 20 minutes with excellent parking.

10. What kind of didactic time do you provide?

Residents meet every Tuesday afternoon for faculty-led and resident-led didactic sessions, population health and leadership workshops, behavioral medicine and Balint group. Research-oriented noon conference, didactic sessions, journal clubs, practice management, and M&M's are offered at the noon hour in the Duke Family Medicine Center.

11. Are fellowships available?

Yes, many fellowships are available at Duke including: community health, geriatric medicine, palliative care and primary care sports medicine.

12. How does your selection process work?

A core group of faculty and residents work together to select applicants who appear to be a good fit for the program. Selected applicants are invited for individual interviews with faculty, residents and the directors of the program.

13. What opportunities exist for my spouse, significant other or other family in the Triangle area?

Whether in health care or other fields, the Research Triangle Area (Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill) has a lot to offer. Educational opportunities abound with two major universities in Durham, and UNC-Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University within a 30-minute drive. Many major international companies (such as GSK, IBM and SAS) have headquarters here. The Triangle is located halfway between the Great Smoky Mountains and the Atlantic ocean, both just over a 2-hour drive away. We have an NHL hockey team, a AAA baseball team, and all the college sports you can hope for. Plus the music/art scene is amazing in Durham, with a state-of-the-art performing arts center. And for the foodies out there, the Triangle area is home to numerous great restaurants with a variety of price points and cuisines. Visit to learn more about what the area has to offer.

14. What kind of quality of life do your residents have?

Residents generally have a very good quality of life. The program prepares residents for our careers by streamlining the curriculum into a “practice like you’ll play” approach. In other words, the residency focus is on seeing outpatients in an ambulatory clinic, excelling at office procedures, and learning to be leaders within the profession. This greater focus on outpatient experiences gives residents enough time to explore all that area has to offer or to moonlight in the second and third years while still developing excellent clinical, leadership, and research skills.

15. What do Duke family medicine residents typically do when they graduate?

Recent graduates have accepted positions in academic medicine, private practice, solo and group practices, government agencies, pursued fellowships, worked in urgent care and medical missions work abroad.