Manisha Bhattacharya, MD, MBA

Basics

Hometown
Princeton Junction, NJ

Where did you attend college/university?
Cornell University

Where did you attend medical school?
Duke University

What additional degrees do you have and from what institution?
MBA, The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University

What are your career goals?
To impact global healthcare by designing and building more affordable and accessible health systems to provide compassionate care for chronic diseases. I am hoping to pursue hematology-oncology and work on building healthcare delivery systems that sensitively integrate curative and palliative approaches to treatment.

Moving to Durham keeps life interesting without having to sacrifice convenience. Medical training will create some of the most demanding years you will have, and it's nice not to have traffic jams, long commutes, outrageous prices, or extreme weather tripping you up in your (limited!) spare time.

Reflections on the Duke program

What were you looking for in a residency program?
I was looking for an institution and program that equally valued a young physician's ability to provide compassionate, comprehensive healthcare to individual patients as well as make meaningful contributions to clinical science and health care delivery. I was attracted to programs where residents and faculty were striving for excellence, and open to each person having their own vision and definition of what excellence and success meant academically and interpersonally.

What are the strengths of the Duke program?
Duke generally strikes an admirable balance between giving residents the autonomy they need to develop independent clinical judgment, while providing support and knowledge to make every day a learning experience. Duke Medicine has also invested in a broad base of basic science, clinical, and health services research programs, and is also affiliated with an amazing Global Health Institute. Duke University is also unique in how accessible the rest of campus is from the medical center. With schools of business, public policy, engineering, and a new Innovation and Entrepreneurship initiative, there are plenty of people willing to partner with people from Duke Medicine!

What are your observations about the relationships between faculty and house staff?
Everyone in the Internal Medicine department is excited about helping house staff cultivate their skills and nurture their interests. Faculty treat you as colleagues during rounds, and are quick to refer you to other people who they think would be appropriate mentors for your interests.

Tell us about your co-residents. How long did it take to connect?
I was so relieved and thrilled to meet my co-interns during our first official program orientation day, and discover that everyone was refreshingly open about the unique mix of excitement, anticipation, and fear that characterizes being on the brink of being called "Doctor". I was struck by how honest and humble this group of obviously accomplished people were on the eve of our intern year, and have found it amazingly easy to connect with others as soon as we begin working together.

About Duke University and Durham

What's best about living in Durham and the Triangle?
Durham and the Triangle are severely underrated! There is a lot to discover, from the events and lectures at multiple universities (Duke, UNC-Chapel Hill, and NC State), to Broadway productions at the Durham Performing Arts Center, the awesome farmer's markets, and the natural beauty of the Eno River and our own Duke Gardens. I enjoy that North Carolina prices let us try plenty of gourmet restaurants across the Triangle, and that there are several fun weekend trip destinations within reach (DC, Asheville, Charleston to name a few!)

How does the Triangle appeal to people of diverse backgrounds?
You will be surprised at how many people have moved to the Triangle from the Northeast, the West Coast, and the Midwest. There are lots of corporate headquarters and startups here, especially over towards Cary and RTP, and Raleigh has a rapidly growing finance industry as well. All of this creates as diverse of a community as you would expect in a big metropolis, but everyone DOES pick up that friendly Southern warmth!

Where did you choose to live, and why?
I now live in a single-family home in South Durham with my husband, an MD/PhD student at Duke. A lot of young professionals live out here and it's a nice break on your day off from living right on top of the hospital. However, as a student here I lived at the Lofts at Lakeview right down the road from the hospital, and I do miss being able to roll seamlessly between work and home with great restaurants along the way!

Based on your life, what advice would you give about moving to Durham?
Moving to Durham keeps life interesting without having to sacrifice convenience. Medical training will create some of the most demanding years you will have, and it's nice not to have traffic jams, long commutes, outrageous prices, or extreme weather tripping you up in your (limited!) spare time. There are also plenty of opportunities to explore culture, cuisine, and the outdoors in our area. Durham and the Triangle will be your oyster whenever you do have time to enjoy it!

What do you like to do outside of medicine?
I love to read fiction and nonfiction, watch sci-fi and British television, sing, attend concerts and plays, and try new restaurants in the Triangle!

Parting thoughts?
Duke Internal Medicine Residency will be an action-packed journey in which you will surpass your own expectations of the kind of clinician you will become, while forming lasting relationships with your colleagues and beginning to pursue your dreams about how you will make your mark on medicine. Come join us!