Letter from Our Chiefs

Dear Candidates, 

Thank you for your interest in our residency program at UC Davis! We (Hemali & Meghan) hold our program and faculty very dear to our hearts and are thrilled to share with you some highlights of our program. 

Our workrooms are large and in close proximity to one another—typically buzzing with a combination of friendly conversations and laughs, and discussions about interesting cases. The environment we strive to maintain is a collegial one formed of collaboration, support and understanding.  

Through your years here, you should expect a well-rounded and wholesome experience of inpatient and outpatient neurology, whilst seeing a variety of rare pathologies. We have over 40 core faculty members of most neurologic subspecialties including but not limited to neuro-oncology, neuro-ophthalmology, & robust sleep, child neurology, movement, headache, neuroimmunology and epilepsy departments. We are well trained in procedures (performing LPs and EMGs, reading EEGs), along with a thorough neurocritical care experience with the opportunity to assist with ICU procedures. We have additional gross labs creating in partnership with our pathology colleagues, a hands-on way to solidify teachings. There are opportunities for research time, in addition to an existing research track during the preliminary year of training with internal medicine. Starting PGY2 year, each resident will have a weekly continuity clinic, having the opportunity to care for patients for the remaining three years of residency, building relationships and developing an individualized practice style. 

Together, we embark on our educational pursuit through our weekly protected didactic afternoon, frequent afternoon reports and our monthly vascular, neuroradiology, epilepsy and stroke journal clubs. We make frequent use of our simulation lab, utilizing the high-fidelity “Manikin” for brain death testing and status epilepticus labs. We do quarterly morbidity and mortality conferences to delve through our complex cases and search for any areas we may improve in. 

Our education programs staff are the most thoughtful individuals who go above and beyond to make us feel appreciated and alleviate our stressors as best as possible. This has included a pre-pandemic Thanksgiving meal brought in and set up for all inpatient teams (including a full vegan meal—yes, roast and all), surprise gifts and random appreciation for our hard work! We also have a strong and ever-improving wellness programan aspect of training we prioritize highly, which has included surprise smoothie bars on hot summer lunchtimes and monthly social hours (currently virtual). 

The city of Sacramento itself carries its own charm. With a phenomenal food & drink scene (we are the Farm-to-Fork Capital), art museums, and events at the brand new Golden One Center, Sacramento itself has plenty to keep your evenings and weekends busy. Lake Tahoe, Napa Valley, Bodega Bay (the coast) & San Francisco are all within a 2-hour drive, and very feasible day or weekend trips! As two non-California natives with no previous ties to this state, UC Davis was a program that spoke for itself and amazed us four odd years ago, and we hope it does the same with you! 

Kind regards, 

Hemali Patel, D.O. & Meghan Branston, D.O. 
Neurology Chief Residents 2021-2022

photo collage of Chief Residents