Welcome to the Preventive Medicine Residency Program

Training excellent physicians who will go on to achieve success and become outstanding leaders

Welcome to the Preventive Medicine Residency Program

Dear Residency Candidate:


Have you ever wondered, “Why do some communities consistently experience better or worse health?” Or, “What can I do to promote health, in addition to treating disease?”


If so, you’ve entered the world of Preventive Medicine. Environment, lifestyle and neighborhood profoundly influence health and well-being, accounting for up to 80% of disease experience. To turn the needle on the epidemic of chronic conditions such as diabetes and obesity, we need to venture outside the walls of the clinic. We need to think about prevention, community-style.

Enter the Rio Grande Valley, a community rich in enthusiasm, conviction and Tex-Mex heritage. Sadly, the Valley’s cultural richness contrasts with unhealthy statistics depicting poverty, obesity, high rates of diabetes and infectious disease.


Here is where the UTRGV General Preventive Medicine residency – and you! – comes in. Our program trains residents to prevent disease via community engagement: respecting local strengths and insight, by including our community members in creating and delivering health programs. Community engagement is a practical, equitable framework for bringing evidence-based medicine’s benefits to underserved populations. In this two-year residency, you will delve into the Preventive Medicine cornerstones of education, engagement, and data evaluation.


  • As an educator, you’ll learn to counsel patients one-on-one, and also work with the Hidalgo County Department of Public Health to spread awareness among students, families, and other stakeholders on health-promoting lifestyles.
  • You’ll engage communities in your research and projects, teaming up with inter-professional experts in local settings: a colonia, free clinic, school district, or even grocery store.
  • You’ll learn to become an evaluator: completing a Masters’ in Public Health at UTHealth Brownsville, you will analyze programs within varied health care systems, conduct needs assessments, engage in research, identify “best practices” and measure the effectiveness of the programs you and community collectively create.


Throughout your training, you’ll be closely mentored and coached by an interdisciplinary, diverse group of PM faculty – many of whom are regionally, nationally and internationally renowned in their fields.

Congratulations on embarking on the journey to build health through prevention. We warmly welcome your interest and invite you to learn more about the innovative paradigm of General Preventive Medicine at UTRGV. Working together to link community, clinic and academics with tools of prevention, we truly believe the Rio Grande Valley will one day be known as “the healthiest region in the United States”.


To your health,

Janani Krishnaswami, M.D., M.P.H.

Residency Program Leadership

Janani Krishnaswami, MD, MPH

Program Director


Dr. Krishnaswami's goal is to adopt a collaborative, systematic approach to building health, while involving residents in the formation of community networks and environments which promote and sustain healthy behavior. She is committed to promoting healthy lifestyles in economically disadvantaged populations, by addressing the environmental and social conditions that drive up risk of chronic disease. She builds momentum for this cause through an “upstream” educational approach: advocating for a comprehensive educational curriculum where physicians learn to promote health, in addition to acutely treating symptoms.


Dr. Krishnaswami’s background centers on building health “outside the hospital”: engaging students, community members and trainees in community-based, participatory efforts to promote wellness, prevent chronic disease, and sustain health. Prior to her role as Program Director, Janani served as the Associate Program Director for Preventive Medicine at the University of California – Los Angeles, where she led discussion and curriculum development on community engagement and quality improvement for UCLA Primary Care residents. As a Kennamer Community Medicine Fellow, Janani provided clinical care, led health improvement and innovation projects, conducted research and mentored residents in various Los Angeles safety net clinics. Here, she received an Innovation Grant award for her project involving gaming technology in adolescent obesity prevention. In addition, she developed and taught a novel health policy curriculum for the Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Internal Medicine residency program, and mentored Family Medicine and Internal Medicine residents through the program’s first community-engaged research elective. Based on her work in curriculum design and medical education, she was invited to serve on a national steering committee directing the creation of a novel inter-residency health policy fellowship, led by George Washington University and Kaiser Permanente.


Dr. Krishnaswami received her M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she was named a Dean’s Scholar. She completed training in Internal Medicine (IM) and Preventive Medicine (PM) at University of California, San Francisco and Kaiser Permanente, and received a University Fellowship to pursue her Masters in Public Health (epidemiology) at University of California –Berkeley. Her research and publications center on the cultural context of wellness, humanism in medical education, and measuring “best practices” of community engaged programs focusing on preventing sedentary behavior and obesity.


In her spare time, Dr. Krishnaswami tends to her own wellness through her hobbies of writing, singing and fitness, and spending time with her husband and 6-month old son.

Robert Nelson, MD

Program Chair



Pending Bio.

Cristina Hinojosa

Program Coordinator


Pending Bio.


How to Apply


Who is an ideal candidate for the UTRGV PM program?


  • Interested in addressing the root causes underlying patterns of health and disease


Eligibility requirements

  • Applicants must have completed training in an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited PGY-1 clinical year (12 months) with a minimum of 11 months of direct patient care.
  • 3 letters of recommendation from clinical supervisors at their prior training program, one of which must be from the program director.
  • Document compliance with one of the following:
    • Graduation from a medical school in the United States or Canada accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical (LCME), or
    • Graduation from any College of Osteopathic Medicine accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), or
    • Graduation from a medical school outside of the United States or Canada and possessing a current valid certificate from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) prior to appointment, or
    • Graduation from a medical school outside the United States and completion of a Fifth Pathway Program provided by a medical school accredited by LCME, or
    • Hold a LMCC certificate from a Canadian school
    • All applicants must either have a full and unrestricted license to practice medicine in Texas, or be eligible for either a training certificate or a permanent medical license as granted by the Texas Medical Board.
    • All applicants must have obtained a passing grade on the USMLE Step 2 or COMLEX Part 2 examination prior to admission.
    • All applicants must have obtained a passing grade on the USMLE Step 3 or COMLEX Part 3 prior to admission, unless the applicant is currently a PGY-1 resident, in which case, on a case-by-case basis, the Program Director may extend admission prior to passing Step 3. However, a passing grade on the USMLE Step 3 must be obtained prior to matriculation.


How to Apply

  • UTRGV PM will be participating in the Standardized Acceptance Process for Preventive Medicine Residencies (new for the 2017 class cycle).
  • Residency applications will be accepted through ERAS.

Once notified of acceptance into the Preventive Medicine Residency Program, a separate application must be also be made to the UT Health School of Public Health.

Program Description


The UTRGV Residency Program in General Preventive Medicine and Public Health is an ACGME-accredited, two-year program located in the culturally diverse region of South Texas.

Our program aims to train tomorrow’s Preventive Medicine experts in the competencies of promoting and maintaining health through community and public health networks.


Working in the diverse and underserved communities of the Rio Grande Valley and beyond, UTRGV Preventive Medicine residents will learn to engage patients in culturally competent preventive care.

Several components of the residency experience will be individualized to the trainee’s career goals and interests. During the 2-year residency, residents will complete a fully-funded Master of Public Health (MPH) degree at UTHealth Brownsville. Each resident will participate in community-based research, clinical preventive care and education. Trainees will learn how to collaborate with academic, public health, clinical and community stakeholders to design, implement, and evaluate preventive health interventions.

Ultimately, graduates are poised to equitably influence the determinants affecting health and well-being as leaders, participants at the local, state and national level. Graduates will be well-suited to careers in a variety of local, state and regional settings - e.g., public health agencies, research institutions, health care systems, community health centers, and academic institutions. Graduates are also eligible for board certification by the American Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM).


Program Goals

  • Increase the number of board-certified preventive health practitioners capable of building health in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas, and United States
  • Increase local and regional access to and quality of preventive health services
  • Respond to the contextual determinants of poor health in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas, and the United States by adopting culturally sensitive and community-engaged approaches

Improve the quality of preventive health education, health interventions, and residency training by collecting, analyzing, and disseminating program data and adopting evidence-based innovations

Training Facilities

Doctors Hospital at Renaissance (DHR) Family Health Center

This location serves as the focal point for the education of residents during their training, and is the venue for their continuity practice. DHR is a 500+ bed acute care hospital providing comprehensive medical care and is the clinical training site for other ACGME-accredited graduate medical education programs, including Family Medicine, General Surgery, Internal Medicine, and Obstetrics and Gynecology.


Hidalgo County Health and Human Services

The county public health department is dedicated to providing essential public health services to empower the residents of Hidalgo County to improve their health. The HCHHS divisions include Health Services, Environmental Health Division, Emergency Preparedness and Response, Human Services, and HidalGO FIT Wellness Program.


University of Texas School of Public Health—Brownsville

The UT Health School of Public Health Brownsville Regional Campus provides public health graduate education to local residents of the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas, as well as to national and international students. Students participate in health research with emphasis on prevention of chronic and infectious disease (i.e. diabetes, tuberculosis, streptococcal pneumonia and sexually transmitted diseases). The campus offers multidisciplinary research programs involving genetics, immunology, bioinformatics, behavioral science, epidemiology, social science and environmental health research.


Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) – Health Services Region 11

Health Service Region 11 is one of the eleven public health regions of the Department of State Health Services, the state governmental agency responsible for bringing comprehensive public health services to the citizens of Texas. Health Service Region 11 serves a 19-county area in the Rio Grande Valley.

Texas DSHS Preventive Medicine & Public Health Residency Program – Austin

Through a partnership between the UTRGV School of Medicine Preventive Medicine Residency Program and the DSHS Preventive Medicine Residency Program, UTRGV residents will have the opportunity to complete an away-rotation in Austin to learn more about Public Health at the state level.


Humana Military – San Antonio

Humana TRICARE partners with the Department of Defense as Humana Military to provide healthcare services to approximately 3 million active duty and retired military and their families in the South Region of the U.S. Residents rotating here participate in a structured population management and data analysis rotation enhanced by access to a robust and rigorously maintained collection of patient data.

Contract, Salary, and Benefits


Residents at DHR are employees of the UT  Rio Grande Valley UTRGV is the sponsoring institution for the residency program. Benefits are established through the UT System Office of Employee Benefits. Benefits begin on the first official day of residency/fellowship.


RESIDENT CONTRACT click here to view a copy (PDF)

Residents are employees of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV). UTRGV is the sponsoring institution for the residency program.

Residents are required to sign an annual Graduate Medical Education (GME) Agreement establishing the terms and conditions for participation in the GME program's facilities or other participating institution facilities.


CURRENT SALARIES (effective July 2016- June 2017)*

UTRGV employees are paid once a month on the 1st of the month.








$49, 036.77








 *PLEASE NOTE: The current salaries for UTRGV residents are provided as reference. Revised salaries for the upcoming program year are typically published in January for July 2016.



Benefits are established through the UT System Office of Employee Benefits. Benefits begin on the first official day of residency/fellowship. details

  • Health Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Vision Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
  • Professional Liability Insurance


Active Employees and their eligible dependents may enroll in:

  • UT SELECT Medical Insurance
  • Prescription Drug Coverage
  • $20,000 Group Term Life
  • Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance

 *Basic Coverage for active employees is at $0 cost to employees.


Optional Coverage Includes:

  • Dental Insurance
  • Vision Insurance
  • Voluntary Group Term Life Insurance
  • Voluntary Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D)


Additional Coverages (Employee only)


• Disability Insurance



All eligible employees of The University of Texas System are automatically enrolled in

the Teacher Retirement System (TRS) of Texas on their first day of employment. For FY15, employees contribute 6.7% of monthly pay to TRS. The institution contributes 6.8%.


At the time of orientation, residents will also be given a onetime opportunity to enroll in the Optional Retirement Program (ORP) instead of TRS. For ORP, employees contribute 6.65%. The institution contributes 8.5%.



First Year

Subsequent Year



10 Days

10 Days

15 Days

10 Days

Dates of vacation are determined through the program director.



Residents are eligible for up to twelve (12) weeks unpaid leave under the Parental

Leave policy (FMLA).



The UTEAP provides an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for all UTRGV employees, faculty, staff members and their families. Through the EAP, you, your spouse or live-in partner, and eligible dependent children can access free, convenient and confidential services. The EAP offers a variety of services including counseling sessions with a licensed mental health professional, legal and financial resources, and WorkLife referrals.



TMB PIT Permit application fee reimbursed

Contact Information


Please direct all correspondence and inquiries to:


Cristina Hinojosa

Residency Coordinator

Preventive Medicine Residency Program UTRGV at Doctors Hospital at Renaissance


1000 E. Dove Avenue

McAllen, Texas 78504

Edinburg, Texas 78539

Phone: (956) 362-3548

Email: cristina.hinojosa@utrgv.edu

5501 S. McColl Rd. Edinburg Texas 78539 | (956) 362-8677 | 956-DOCTORS

Copyright © 2015 Doctors Hospital at Renaissance. All Rights Reserved


Doctors Hospital at Renaissance proudly meets the federal definition of a “physician-owned hospital” (42 CFR § 489.3). As required by law, a list of the hospital’s physician owners and investors is available at www.dhr-rgv.com. DHR, Ltd. and its affiliated entities comply with applicable Federal civil rights laws and do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.