Mentored Research Training in Aging and Surgery (MERITAS)

MERITAS, a research training program at the Center for Surgery and Public Health (CSPH) at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, is the first research training program in aging tailored to the unique needs of surgical residents. Accepting two residents each year, this two-year program provides rigorous training in health services research focused on aging and surgery. Fellows will have the opportunity to conduct research from concept to dissemination under the mentorship of multidisciplinary investigators with broad content and methodological expertise. This program is open to surgical residents from any surgical specialty with an interest in researching aging.

Why Study Aging?

Over 40% of inpatient surgery, 30% of outpatient surgery and 30% of trauma admissions are for older adults. Surgical procedures and traumatic injury among older adults have increased as surgery has become safer, less invasive, and life expectancy has increased. However, significant gaps remain in our understanding of how to optimize care for older surgical patients. By 2025 the cost attributed to surgery will comprise 7.3% of the national GDP making it urgent and imperative for research to elucidate the best structures, processes, and outcomes to deliver the highest quality surgical care for older patients.

About CSPH

The Center for Surgery and Public Health is a leader in surgical health services research. With over 30 affiliated faculty, we are committed to advancing the science of surgical care delivery through impactful research and providing comprehensive training to the next generation of physician-scientists. Learn more about current CSPH fellows here.


Accepted applicants will receive 80% salary support in addition to travel and conference support. The remaining 20% should be provided by the fellow’s home institution, mentor, or external grant. Personal funds may not be used. See additional resources for funding here.


  • Resident in good standing at (ACGME)-accredited surgical residency program.

  • Completed PGY-2 or PGY-3 of training at the time of the start of the research program.

  • Commit to two years of dedicated research.

  • Must be a United States citizens or legal resident.

How to Apply

Apply online here. Please have the following documents prepared:

  • CV

  • Personal statement

  • Research project plan

  • Letter of support from program director

  • Identified mentor(s).

MERITAS applicants should have a committed mentor associated with MERITAS already arranged before applying. A link to the current MERITAS Faculty List can be found below. If you are interested in applying and need assistance identifying a mentor, please reach out to Melissa Poleo.

Applications for the 2024-2026 cohort close March 15, 2024

Benefit from a comprehensive training curriculum including qualitative and quantitative methods, grant writing workshops, and presentation skills.

Receive dedicated statistical support from experienced CSPH biostatisticians

Participate in a collaborative environment that consists of academic researchers at all career stages. Receive tailored mentorship from leaders in the field.