about Mount Sinai chicago

GENERAL: Sinai Health is a community health system that consists of 2 hospitals and multiple clinics within a 30 minute drive of the main hospital. It’s a full core site for AUC students with an additional 6 week Family Medicine rotation. The reason for this is that Pediatrics and Psychiatry are not ACGME accredited. By taking the Family Medicine rotation, it serves as an umbrella accreditation to the other two. The majority of rotations take place at the main hospital, Mt. Sinai, located at 1500 S. Fairfield Ave in Chicago near the Pilsen/Cicero neighborhoods. All students spend a significant amount of their time here; however, you may spend up to 6 weeks at a time at the sister hospital, Holy Cross, located at 2701 W. 68th St (about 20 minutes by car south of Mt. Sinai). Both hospitals serve largely underserved populations with significant comorbidities. I’ve seen patients with complications from all common diseases (hypertension, diabetes, asthma/COPD) as well as rare diseases such as cardiac myxomas, genetic mosaicism, and rare surgical complications. 


OPTIONS: AUC offers 2 different start cycles. 


1st week of July**

2nd week of January


This is a full-core site plus a 6-week Family Medicine elective for a total of 48 weeks. 

Two of the rotations (Psych and Peds) are not ACGME-accredited which is why you are required to complete the full 6-week FM rotation (as a means of retroactively “accrediting” our time in Psych and Peds). Discuss this with the AUC coordinators and do your own research into what this means for future licensure. As we understand at this time, it could make landing residency in the states of California, Texas, and Pennsylvania challenging. The advice we received is to complete only ACGME-accredited electives to fully balance these two rotations.


**Due to USMLE’s annual summer software update, students in their 5th semester during Spring term who are interested in this date need to get in touch with the coordinators. The reason for this is that if you take your Step 1 exam between the start of May and end of June, you will not have your score reported until after the July start date.


ORIENTATION: The UGME office is responsible for medical students from all programs. You will rotate primarily with Ross students, but certain rotations also host Chicago Medical School and St. Matthews students. All students complete a very comprehensive site orientation to receive badges, parking passes, scrub access, locker assignments, and login in addition to building orientation. Per visiting AUC elective students, the Mt. Sinai orientation is one of the best of all our sites!


FOOD: Both hospitals have cafeterias with decent options. Both have grills, daily menu options, and salad bars. The main hospital has a Subway and Starbucks. Food at both hospitals is typically pretty cheap. A solid breakfast might cost you less than $5 and lunch ranges from $6-10. It closes at around 6pm so be sure to bring snacks for night shift!


PARKING: Each student pays $20 deposit for a parking permit. On your first day of orientation you will park in the parking garage and receive a voucher for free parking. Once you have registered your vehicle and receive your parking permit, you’ll park in the student lot located across the street from the main entrance on Ogden Ave. It’s a gravel lot. The neighborhood directly next to the hospital is relatively safe, but it’s located in very close proximity to less safe parts of town. The parking lot is very well lit, and the hospital offers a security shuttle service to the parking lot at night for your piece of mind. Simply check in at the security desk and request a shuttle.


ENTRANCE TO HOSPITAL: Main hospital -- The main entrance is on the Ogden Ave side of the building. This is where the bus stops are, where you can get dropped off/picked up by your ride shares, or just walk in from the parking lot. It closes around 8pm but there’s a nearby exit from the pharmacy.

Holy Cross -- There is a parking garage directly next to the hospital. You’ll park on the upper levels past the physician and outpatient visitor sections (levels 5+). Then simply take the elevator down and enter through the sliding glass door to get to the main lobby. Parking is different here and they’re currently developing the student rates. It used to be free, then $1 cash, now there’s talk of it being free again, so just double check!


COMPUTER ACCESS: You’ll be given your username and password at orientation. On any Sinai Health computer you can log in to access sharepoint, internet, and the EMR (Meditech for inpatient and Nextgen for outpatient). Some clinics are part of the Access network. These clinics use Epic, to which you will not be given access. In these instances you will work with your preceptor to get patient information and write notes. (Seems stressful, but it’s actually really chill.)


ATTENDANCE: You’re granted 2 sick days per 6 week rotation and 4 for the 12 week rotations. It’s in your best interest to aim for 100% participation… it just looks better. DO NOT BE LATE. No one will say anything to you, but it will be noticed. Follow the rule of “on time is late, 15 minutes early is on time.” This should be the case for any rotation you go to. 


OTHER TRANSPORTATION: The main hospital “technically” lies on the Blue and Pink lines, but if you’re planning on relying on public transportation to get you to the hospital fairly regularly, the buses will be your best bet. The buses that service the Mt Sinai stops are 18, 157, and 94. For Holy Cross, its neighborhood is also high risk. The green line runs by there but bus 94 may be a better bet.

To use the public system you’ll go to any metro station and purchase a Ventra card. This is a reloadable card that you can use for the buses and trains. You can reload at the train stations or online after you register your card. One way costs $2.50. None of the outside medical schools qualify for student rates, so be sure to factor that into your budget. The buses and trains are both really reliable as far as times. Trains have the broadest schedules, so if you need to get there extra early you may be stuck in a rideshare or train with a couple blocks walk to the hospital.


RESEARCH: Sinai is a community hospital system and not linked to an academic institution. This allows for a lot of good opportunities for learning, but it does make research opportunities a bit more limited (for students, residents, and fellows). A lot of the attendings are clinicians and build their careers in that light. There are, however, still a handful of physicians willing and available to help you gain research experience and publications. Any opportunities are typically instigated and run by residents, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep an eye out for interesting patients or atypical presentations of certain disease processes. Ask both your resident and attending about writing a case report on those cases. If you have a good research topic idea, try to link with an attending willing to sign off on the project. You can also ask to join projects you find interesting (even if you’re not in that particular rotation). I got added onto a research project for surgery and met the attending long before I even started my surgery rotation. What plays to your benefit is that you’re already on site for at least 48 weeks, so you’ll be available to assist with a lot of the needs of the project.


Overall, Mt. Sinai is a fantastic experience. Everyone is really kind and the students are well supported. If you come in with a good attitude and demonstrate a real desire to be part of the team, you’ll be treated as such.

Good luck on your rotation!

Brandon Byers