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Learn about Pennsylvania Hospital's pathology residency program.

Biopsy - tissue sample under microscope

The First Year

Residents acquire extensive experience in both surgical pathology (8 months) and get an introduction to various fields of clinical pathology (4 months), usually blood banking and chemistry. In surgical pathology, residents are responsible for gross description and dissection of cases and also includes autopsy and frozen sections. For the first month, each new resident is assigned a “peer-mentor” in the form of a senior resident (usually the Chief Residents) who helps integrate new residents into the department. There is ample time for residents to review their slides prior to sign out with the attending pathologist at a teaching microscope. The first year is spent primarily at Pennsylvania Hospital.

The Second Year

Residents spend core rotations in the major disciplines of clinical pathology, as well as anatomic pathology, which includes electives and cytopathology. The core CP rotations include:

  • Blood Bank: All aspects of transfusion medicine are covered with individualized practical experience and didactic instruction.
  • Chemistry: Practical experience in instrumentation, methodology and clinical pathologic correlation are emphasized.
  • Hematopathology: Residents gain experience in bone marrow and smear interpretation, instrumentation, evaluation of coagulation and examination of body fluids. The residents also spend 1 month rotating in the hematopathology department at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP).
  • Microbiology: Residents receive extensive individualized instruction and participate in clinical-pathologic problem solving.One month of microbiology is spent at the HUP.

The Third and Fourth Years

Residents gain increasing experience in a variety of surgical pathology disciplines including cytopathology, elective rotations at the HUP, and molecular pathology, also at HUP, and rotations at the Medical Examiner’s office.

Increasing responsibility is given during additional surgical and autopsy pathology rotations. Electives are available in ocular pathology at Wills Eye Hospital, pediatric pathology at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Additional experience in hematology, blood banking, microbiology and clinical chemistry are tailored to the individual interests of each resident. Research in terms of projects are encouraged in anatomic and/or clinical pathology and attendance at a national meeting is reimbursed whenever a resident presents a poster or abstract.


The program provides structured training with interactive, didactic and hands-on experience including modern laboratory technologies. This program prepares our residents to pursue both academic and community level practice. Our residents have secured highly coveted fellowships across the nation and have become members and leaders of healthcare teams.

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