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Dr. George Lawry and Dr. Shaista Malik confer with members of UC Irvine's rheumatology fellowship program.

The Division of Rheumatology at UC Irvine's School of Medicine offers a highly competitive, two-year fellowship program that provides extensive clinical training in rheumatic and musculoskeletal disorders.

We are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). We also encourage fellows seeking a career in academic medicine to pursue a third year of sponsored research.

The program is based at UC Irvine Medical Center, Orange County's only university medical center.

Educational Activities »

Division fellows receive in-depth clinical rheumatology experience in consultative hospital and outpatient care at the UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange and its state-of-the-art UC Irvine Douglas Hospital as well as at the VA Long Beach Health System. Fellows also train in pediatric rheumatology at CHOC Children's Hospital of Orange County.

Rheumatology fellows spend two-thirds of their time in clinical training and the remainder in research. Mentored research opportunities include basic science or clinical research as well as collaborative clinical trials. Fellows are expected to present their work at the American College of Rheumatology's annual meeting. 

We also encourage fellows seeking a career in academic medicine to pursue a third year of sponsored rheumatology or immunology research.

Didactic training includes:
  • Weekly rheumatology grand rounds
  • Monthly journal club
  • Monthly case presentations
  • Musculoskeletal rheumatology-radiology conferences every two months
  • Ultrasound training
Salary and Benefits »

The annual salary scale is:

  • First year — $62,018
  • Second year — $64,556

    Fellows receive two weeks of vacation plus two weeks of educational leave per year.

    The university provides medical, dental and vision plans designed to meet the needs of the fellows and their families.

    Fellows also receive professional liability coverage for all activities that are part of rheumatology fellowship training program.

    Moonlighting as a rheumatologist is not permitted.

Eligibility and Application Process »

UC Irvine's Division of Rheumatology accepts two incoming fellows each year. We accept applications through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS), which is sponsored by the Association of American Medical Colleges.  You can search for the University of California Irvine Rheumatology Fellowship Program by Accreditation ID: 1500521108.

For questions about the application process, go to ERAS online or call 215-966-3940. We also participate in the National Residency Matching Program.

Fellowship candidates must have completed an ACGME-accredited Internal Medicine residency program. Applicants also must have:
  • Board-certification or board-eligibility in internal medicine
  • Proof of medical school graduation (original diploma)
  • Proof of passing the three-step United States Medical Licensing Examination® (USMLE)
  • U.S. citizenship, permanent residency or a J-1 visa with sponsorship by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG)
  • A valid California medical license

State law requires that fellows have a California medical license before beginning the program. For graduates of medical schools outside the United States, please note that the licensure process can take six to 12 months or longer. If you are not already licensed in the state, contact the Medical Board of California online or at 1426 Howe Ave., Suite 54, Sacramento, CA 95825-3236.

Applicants with permanent residency or a J-1 visa also must provide a current certificate from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) before starting the fellowship.

ERAS applications should include:

Thank you for your interest in our program.

George V. Lawry, MD
Chief, Division of Rheumatology

Sheetal Desai, M.D.
Fellowship Program Director

For more information about the Division of Rheumatology's fellowship program, please contact:

Alix Huynh
Fellowship Program Coordinator
Phone: 714-456-5135