Electives & Scholarly Activity
Our fellowship incorporates 28 weeks of unstructured time that allows for a personalized training experience. Decisions about what electives or projects each fellow will pursue are made on a case-by-case basis following discussions between the program director and the trainee that take into account each fellow's learning needs, personal interests, and career goals.
Because our core curriculum already incorporates a wide array of clinical and procedural experiences necessary to establish a solid foundation in critical care, no additional clinical activities are required. However based their previous training and future plans, some fellows choose to pursue additional clinical rotations to hone specific skills. Our most popular clinical electives include…
- echocardiography – working with our professional sonographers in the outpatient cardiology clinics to become more proficient in advanced ultrasound
- ICU nephrology – collaborating with our renal faculty members to evaluate and treat ICU patients with acute electrolyte disorders, including prescribing and managing continuous renal replacement therapy
- nutrition – teaming with our critical care dieticians to identify appropriate nutrition support regimens for patients with a variety of conditions and comorbidities, including prescribing TPN
All fellows are expected to engage in scholarship during the training program. At a minimum, every trainee must complete a data-driven, multi-professional quality improvement project prior to graduation. Fellows first earn the Institute for Health Care Improvement Basic Certificate in Quality and Safety to learn the foundational skills for this work. Thereafter they collaborate with faculty intensivists within and outside the Department of Medicine as well as with non-physician ICU caregivers to pursue projects of institutional significance. Recent efforts that have included fellows as active team members include…
- updating the guideline on prone positioning in ARDS to reflect the most current medical evidence
- benchmarking institutional outcomes of haplo-identical stem cell transplant to identify opportunities for improvement
- revising the guideline on therapeutic hypothermia following cardiac arrest and creating an order set to enhance adherence
- developing and assessing the efficacy of protocols to standardize weaning from VA ECMO
- evaluating the role of micro-induction of suboxone to facilitate the liberation of ICU patients from sedative and narcotic infusions
Substantial resources are available to those who desire an intensive experience as investigators. The university has a large research footprint with significant external funding and the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine is home to several physician-scientists. All fellows meet with Dr. Anthony Pietropaoli, our division vice chief and a funded sepsis researcher, in the spring of first year to learn about current institutional projects they may wish to join during the scholarly time available in second year.
Regardless of the type of scholarship pursued, fellows are strongly encouraged to submit their work to a national or regional conference, typically the Society of Critical Care Medicine Critical Care Congress or the New York State Thoracic Society Scientific Assembly.
Class of 2021
Trevor Clarkson, DO
Residency / Internal Medicine, Houston Methodist Hospital
One of the things that is unique about the program is that outside of our core rotations, we can really individualize our training through the variety of elective options we have available, ranging from imaging specialties like echo or chest radiography to niche specialties that we encounter like toxicology.
The freedom we have in choosing our electives lets us really round out our clinical education in a way not offered at some other programs.”