Creating a New Kind of Doctor
We recruit and train physician leaders as comfortable taking on systemic challenges in health as caring for individual patients.
Discovery to Impact — Faster
We reward creative thinking and encourage rapid experimentation, using collaborative programs to speed promising research to market.
Improving Care. Improving Health.
We’re here to make health — including health care — better. The end goal is a complete revolution in how people get and stay healthy.
Health in the Landscape of Life
Enabling the healthscape, the ecosystem outside the clinic, requires improving the system to pay for health drivers.
More Information
Meet Dell Med
We’re rethinking the role of academic medicine in improving health — and doing so with a unique focus on our community.
More Information
Make an Appointment Faculty Students Directory Give

Distinction Program for Care Transformation

Dell Medical School’s graduate medical education Distinction Program for Care Transformation provides selected residents and fellows with a unique opportunity to engage in a nontraditional, interdisciplinary learning experience in health systems science. Participants advance their skills as systems-ready leaders while exploring and discovering new possibilities in patient care and population health through design and innovation.

Program Structure

The distinction program consists of two required components.

The foundation offers coursework that is atypical to traditional graduate medical education training and within the domains of health systems science, design thinking, value-based care, communication and leadership. Learning formats vary from face-to-face, interactive lectures and team-based workshops to asynchronous online modules.

Distinction projects are individualized based on viability of each resident’s proposal and area of interest. Residents may design mentored projects working within the medical school on central institutional initiatives or within other colleges across The University of Texas at Austin campus. Opportunities exist to develop robust value-based care proposals, research studies or health care products.


Matriculation to the Distinction Program begins in August. The participating program year level is determined by the residency or fellowship training program. 

The program is typically two years in length and culminates in a presentation of a distinction project at Dell Med’s Research Day. Time for participation in the program is protected from primary training responsibilities.

Participating Specialties

The distinction program is available to residents and fellows in all specialties. Current participants include trainees from:

Contact the residency or fellowship training program for more information.

Program Selection

Internal medicine and pediatrics candidates are matched to the program through the National Residency Matching Program. Candidates must apply through the Electronic Residency Application Service by selecting “U Texas at Austin Dell Medical School”; “Austin, Texas”; “Specialty/Distinction.” Interviews for the distinction program occur during the regular residency recruitment season.

Recruitment for candidates from all other specialties occurs during the first half of PGY-1. Participants are selected from the pool of residents who have matched into the training programs.