Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Overview

The Washington University Anesthesiology Critical Care Fellowship offers multidisciplinary training at one of the nation’s consistently ranking top-10 leading academic medical centers. The 12-month program is dedicated to preparing outstanding physicians for rewarding careers in critical care medicine. The program provides comprehensive training in a supportive and stimulating environment. Fellows spend nine months receiving clinical training; the remaining three months are spent gaining additional clinical experience or pursuing projects in basic or clinical research. Critical care trainees must be board eligible in anesthesiology, surgery, or emergency medicine. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has approved the program since its inception. The School of Medicine also offers critical care fellowship programs in surgery, pulmonary medicine, pediatrics, and neurology/neurosurgery. The institution's breadth of expertise in critical care medicine provides a rich learning environment for all of its critical care fellows.

Home Base - The Surgical & Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Units

Barnes-Jewish Hospital is a tertiary referral center and Level I trauma center with a broad catchment area and an enormous scope of influence. Our patient base arrives from the entire state of Missouri and parts of every bordering state: Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. The Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) is a closed ICU that comprises 36 beds allocated to an array of critically ill or injured surgical patients requiring pre-operative stabilization, post-operative intensive care after elective or emergency surgery, or critical care following complications of surgical illnesses. Patients admitted to the SICU arrive from all of the surgical subspecialties, thus providing a broad base of experiences. Our Intensivists hail from the disciplines of Anesthesiology, Surgery, and Emergency Medicine, and are consistently ranked among the top teaching faculty in the department of Anesthesiology. Our fellows also spend a significant portion of their time in our state-of-the-art Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU), a 21-bed unit devoted to the perioperative care of a diverse mix of routine and complex cardiac and thoracic surgical patients. Among other strengths, we have world-class lung transplantation, cardiac transplantation, ventricular assist device, complicated valvular repair and replacement, and aortic repair programs. Other intensive care units that play a significant role in our fellowship include our Medical ICU, Neuro ICU, Coronary Care Unit, and the Pediatric ICU at Saint Louis Children’s Hospital.

The Educational Curriculum – Foundation and Innovation

Our goal is to train our fellows for a future of leadership in critical care, and a multi-faceted didactic program underlies that goal. Our weekly Multidisciplinary Critical Care Lecture Series (MDCCLS) provides the foundation for a strong base of knowledge. Attending speakers from various disciplines participate, delivering a distillation of the most current thinking in all facets of critical care. We also have a weekly Fellows Critical Care Lecture Series (FCCLS) with speakers from our Division of Critical Care. As part of the FCCLS, each fellow gives two lectures per year on the topics of their choice. We also have a board review lecture series and a research lecture series to compliment your educational experience. At our monthly Journal Club, the faculty and fellows participate in what is invariably a lively discussion about an article from the most current literature. Our monthly Clinical Outcomes and Unit-Based Quality Improvement meetings flush out the administrative component of your training. These settings provide a forum to discuss patient safety and opportunities to improve our delivery of critical care medicine. See our 2015-2016 Didactic Schedule. Innovations in the education of our fellows are constantly being explored. Currently we are collaborating with the nationally recognized Clinical Simulation Center at the Washington University School of Medicine to develop novel approaches to fellow, resident, and medical student education. Additionally, we have a web-based critical care library that provides our Fellows with a consistently up-to-date accessible learning resource.

Research Opportunities – Mentorship on the Cutting Edge

The Department of Anesthesiology at Washington University School of Medicine is a national leader in research. We ranked first among departments of Anesthesiology nationwide with over $7 million in National Institutes of Health funding. The School of Medicine ranked fourth in NIH funding with over $350 million awarded in 2008. Clinical and Basic Science investigations occur in all of the subspecialty areas, and many include partnership with experts in other disciplines such as cardiology, hematology or endocrinology. Fellows are offered mentorship in developing their own research projects, as well as being encouraged to participate in ongoing research projects. All Research Seminars and Research Conferences are open to our fellows, and our monthly Clinical Research Group is a valuable source of project development ideas.

Putting it all Together

Critical Care Medicine is a rapidly advancing subspecialty, and the Multidisciplinary Critical Care Fellowship Program at Washington University and Barnes-Jewish Hospital provides innumerable opportunities to help shape the future of the field. We hope that you will come to Saint Louis to visit our exciting program.