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  1. #1
    shadyhtown is offline Senior Member 524 points
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    Number of IM letters

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    So I was reading Ultimate guide to a medical specialty, and it says that for academic IM programs, you should send a chair letter, and two other medicine faculty letters. I already have a Chair letter and a PD letter, which I assumed would be sufficient (along with 2 other specialty letters). Are there any programs that will not interview me because I don't have a 3rd medicine letter?
    Last edited by shadyhtown; 08-17-2011 at 02:58 PM.

  2. #2
    rokshana is offline Member Guru 11644 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadyhtown View Post
    So I was reading Ultimate guide to a medical specialty, and it says that for academic IM programs, you should send a chair letter, and two other medicine faculty letters. I already have a Chair letter and a PD letter, which I assumed would be sufficient (along with 2 other specialty letters). Are there any programs that will not interview me because I don't have a 3rd medicine letter?
    no, 2 should be sufficient, unless the program specifically states that they want more.

    Usually IM programs want 3 letters, one being from an IM Chair and 2 others....doesn't hurt to have a letter from another discipline (say like surgery or an IM subspecialty) that gives a different viewpoint.
    Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism Attending
    ABIM certified IM
    ValueMD-the place "where nothing makes sense, but everything is related-fellow vmd'r gabon

  3. #3
    digitalising's Avatar
    digitalising is offline Moderator 6117 points
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    Unfortunately I never met my IM chair except for the time I asked if he could sign for a non-formulary drug, but I have a letter from my co-head preceptor who was also my attending for the last month. I guess we shall see...
    SGU Forum Moderator - "I wouldn't do that if I were you."

    "I got a letter last year asking me if I would donate my brain to a medical school in Grenada. I'll tell you, there are days where I think, yeah, why not just get it over with." ~ Sam Seaborn, The West Wing

    SGU '12, Specialization in saying, "Is that Dora? You know she's an illegal immigrant, right? Love a more American character, like Red Elmo!"

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    rokshana is offline Member Guru 11644 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by digitalising View Post
    Unfortunately I never met my IM chair except for the time I asked if he could sign for a non-formulary drug, but I have a letter from my co-head preceptor who was also my attending for the last month. I guess we shall see...
    co-head preceptor that was an attending....is that like your cousin's boyfriend's mother?

    I didn't have much interaction with the IM chair either...could wave hi and say how are you doing and he would answer back....but I was friendly with the IM secretary and and went and asked HER how I could go about getting a letter from the chair...and she said don't worry about it....so i gave her my packet of info for a LoR writer and she gave it to him and voila! I had a chair's LoR...yeah it was somewhat generic but complimentary, but it fufilled its role...it was an IM Chair letter....I had other LoR that were great and heard many a times during the interview season how good my LoRs were...
    Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism Attending
    ABIM certified IM
    ValueMD-the place "where nothing makes sense, but everything is related-fellow vmd'r gabon

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    shadyhtown is offline Senior Member 524 points
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    Yea, try to get that chair letter; even if it's generic, it fulfills the purpose. I expected a fairly generic letter from my chair, but I ended up interacting with hm more in recent times, due to a combination of things: a personal medical condition that he was advising me on, a meeting he had with me to offer advice on residency program options, plus he also reviewed and suggested corrections to my personal statement.

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    shadyhtown is offline Senior Member 524 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by rokshana View Post
    Usually IM programs want 3 letters, one being from an IM Chair and 2 others....doesn't hurt to have a letter from another discipline (say like surgery or an IM subspecialty) that gives a different viewpoint.
    Actually besides the chair letter, the only specific requirement most programs have is a Dean's letter - guess I'll have to wait until November for that.

  7. #7
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    TheFooBar is offline Elite Member 8339 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by rokshana View Post
    co-head preceptor that was an attending....is that like your cousin's boyfriend's mother?
    More like his father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.
    SGU SOM Dropout, M.D.

  8. #8
    digitalising's Avatar
    digitalising is offline Moderator 6117 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheFooBar View Post
    More like his father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.
    Which made us, like so many others, nothing at all...
    Last edited by digitalising; 08-17-2011 at 08:42 PM.
    SGU Forum Moderator - "I wouldn't do that if I were you."

    "I got a letter last year asking me if I would donate my brain to a medical school in Grenada. I'll tell you, there are days where I think, yeah, why not just get it over with." ~ Sam Seaborn, The West Wing

    SGU '12, Specialization in saying, "Is that Dora? You know she's an illegal immigrant, right? Love a more American character, like Red Elmo!"

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    Katya1909 is offline Senior Member 512 points
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    Guys, how many letters should we assign? I will have 4 letters from IM, including one from a Chairmen. I know 3 were already sent, but one was not even written yet. Most of the programs I am applying require 3 letters, should I choose 3 and assign only 3? Or should I assign all 4 and they will choose which ones to look at? What if they don't look at my Chairmen letter? Also, 3 that have been sent are all from the same hospital, is it ok or should I assign the 4th one from a different hospital...thanks!
    Last edited by Katya1909; 09-04-2011 at 09:11 AM.

  10. #10
    rokshana is offline Member Guru 11644 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katya1909 View Post
    Guys, how many letters should we assign? I will have 4 letters from IM, including one from a Chairmen. I know 3 were already sent, but one was not even written yet. Most of the programs I am applying require 3 letters, should I choose 3 and assign only 3? Or should I assign all 4 and they will choose which ones to look at? What if they don't look at my Chairmen letter? Also, 3 that have been sent are all from the same hospital, is it ok or should I assign the 4th one from a different hospital...thanks!
    don't go overboard, if a program says 3 send 3...if you have a letter that adds something more that you get later, then by all means send it...or if your chair letter is pretty generic and you want them to see more or have letters from different disciplines, then send the extra, but 3 letters from IM attendings for IM should be enough...what is a 4th letter really gonna say that hasn't been said in the other 3?
    Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism Attending
    ABIM certified IM
    ValueMD-the place "where nothing makes sense, but everything is related-fellow vmd'r gabon

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