Neonatal-Perinatal Fellowship Program

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  How to Apply

The Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Fellowship Referrer's Evaluation Form (PDF) must be attached with each of your LOR’s and uploaded in ERAS with your application.

For more information on how to apply for our program please go to the ERAS website.

  Clinical Components

Fellows will do approximately 12 one-month clinical rotations during their three-year fellowship training with additional in-house night calls throughout the fellowship. All the fellows, including those on service, share the night calls. The call schedule is prepared by the senior fellow and is approved by the program director each month. An effort will be made to distribute the weekend and holiday calls equitably among all the fellows. The call hours for weekdays are generally 4 p.m. to 8 a.m. and weekend/holidays, 8 a.m. to 8 a.m. It is expected that the fellow on clinical service or night call will go on neonatal transports whenever possible.

The fellows' regular work hours are in accordance with the new guidelines of the Specialty & Subspecialty Board Requirements and will be enforced as follows:

The total number of hours spent by each fellow in patient care is limited to 80 hours per week averaged over a four-week period, inclusive of all in–house call activities. In addition, fellows are restricted to 24 hours of continuous patient care and an additional 4 hours of time for the completion of documentation and transfer of patient care responsibilities to other care providers. There will be no new admissions or new transport calls during this 4-hour window that begins from completion of 24 hours of patient care. In addition, fellows will have at least one day off each week. These policies will be strictly enforced.

  Conferences and Didactic Sessions

The Division of Neonatology holds many academic conferences throughout the year to enhance fellow’s learning. Some of these conferences occur on a weekly basis, while others are monthly to bimonthly. Fellows are expected to participate in these conferences, and the level of responsibility is graduated based on fellowship level.

View list of conferences and didactic sessions (PDF)

  Progression in Responsibilities

For each year of your fellowship, you will be given more responsibility in direct patient care and leading the care team. We expect that by the end of your third year, you will be functioning at the level of an attending and we will work with you to help you get there! Because of this graded responsibility, each year of your fellowship will look a little different.

First Year

  1. Develop clinical competence (5 months in the NICU and ½ month in the Newborn Nursery). You will master the procedural skills during the first 6 months by preferentially giving procedures to first-year fellows during this time.
  2. Attend the Neonatal Developmental Follow-up Clinic.
  3. Present two basic physiology conferences, one journal club, and at least one patient oriented conference during your service months.
  4. Attend the Joint Fellowship Curriculum of the Department of Pediatrics.
  5. Initiate research: Identify project, mentor, and Scholarly Oversight Committee (SOC). You will have two SOC meetings to evaluate your progress and provide guidance (see Research).

Second Year

  1. Continue to develop clinical competence (3 months in NICU) but focus more on teaching residents and junior fellows. Two service months will be on resident teams (A or B) while one month will be on C team, staffed by one faculty members and 2-3 Neonatal Nurse Practitioners (NNP’s). During your C team month, you will have more opportunity to round independently, and gain the experience in providing care with nurse practitioners.
  2. Continue to attend the Neonatal Developmental Follow-up Clinic.
  3. Present three basic physiology conferences, one journal club, and at least one patient oriented conference while on service.
  4. Work on research project. We encourage fellows to write a first author abstract that will be submitted by the fall of the third year.
  5. Participate in the Joint Fellowship Curriculum.

Third Year

  1. Continue to develop clinical competence and teaching skills by serving approximately 3 months (including at least 1 month as a Junior Attending in the NICU).
  2. Continue to attend the Neonatal Developmental Follow-up Clinic.
  3. Present three basic physiology conferences (one of which is a presentation of your research), one journal club, and at least one patient-oriented conference while on service.
  4. Complete research project and write manuscript for submission by end of third year.
  5. Present your completed research project at a major conference (usually PAS/SPR).
  Procedural Requirements

Fellows will gain procedural competence through time spent on service and on call in the NICU, in the delivery room, and through various clinical rotations during their fellowship. We feel that competence in the following procedures is necessary prior to completion of training:

  • Needle aspiration of the chest and chest tube insertion
  • Delivery room resuscitation
  • Intubation
  • Lumbar puncture
  • PICC line insertion
  • Peripheral arterial puncture and line insertion
  • Umbilical line placement (both arterial and venous)
  Neonatal Transport

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin (CHW) is the only referral service for the majority of pediatric and neonatal patients in Wisconsin, covering an area of nearly six million people. Many patients require medical transport from referring hospitals to CHW. We have a dedicated transport team that provides this service. This specialized group includes nurses and respiratory therapists who go on every transport. Physicians only go on 10 % of the annual transports. However, given the unique challenges inherited in transporting a critically ill neonate, our neonatal fellows often go on these transports to ensure optimal care. CHW has access to transport via ambulance, helicopter, and fixed wing plane. The majority of transports are within Wisconsin; however CHW commonly transports patients from the upper peninsula of Michigan and northern Illinois as well.

If a physician is needed to go on a transport during the day, the fellow on the admitting team will go with the transport team. On nights and weekends, this responsibility is for the on-call fellow. Exceptions to this are if the fellow is unable to go on transports (pregnancy, illness, or other circumstances). The attending acting as medical control makes the final decision about who goes on transport after assessing the unit’s needs and acuity. On transport, the fellow is the “eyes and ears” for the faculty at CHW. They will perform procedural expertise as needed, and will provide medical care in coordination with the transport nurse and respiratory therapist. In addition, the fellow is the representative of CHW, and is responsible for communicating with the patient’s family members. Senior fellows also have the opportunity to serve as the “Junior Medical Control” by communicating with the referring physician and transport team in conjunction with the staff neonatologist.

In order to be eligible for transports, you will complete a short orientation to get familiar with the equipment used and review safety information for the helicopters. Fellows are compensated $25/hour for time spent on transports. Fellows are required to document care provided during the transport.

  Evaluation

The fellow is evaluated during and after each clinical rotation by the attending faculty. On-service fellows and faculty will meet halfway through the faculty’s service block to verbally discuss performance. Verbal and written feedback is given at the end of the faculty’s service time. Appropriate areas of weaknesses and strengths are identified. Fellows meet bi-annually with the fellowship directors to review their performance and to identify areas of improvement. The fellowship directors work with each fellow to devise individual means to aid in improving their performances when necessary. The fellow will also get an opportunity to anonymously evaluate each faculty member with regards to effectiveness of teaching, research, and clinical skills. The information will be provided to the department chair for staff development purposes.

  Research

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin/ Medical College of Wisconsin has a strong tradition of research among our fellows. After graduating, several of our fellows have continued their research endeavors and have become leaders in their respective fields of research. The Division of Neonatology recognizes the unique opportunity that is present during fellowship training.

Just as we prepare our fellows to become experts in neonatal medicine, we also mentor them to develop the skills to become experts in research. Rather than assign a project to each fellow, we encourage our fellows to choose a project that will both interest them during fellowship and prepare them for a career in academic neonatology. Our division has a wide variety of research interests, and faculty members are eager to train fellows; however, fellows are not limited to just the Division of Neonatology. Learn more about our faculty's research projects. As the only academic medical campus in Milwaukee, fellows have a wide variety of research projects to choose from. Past fellows have worked with many different divisions at CHW/MCW, including genetics, pediatric surgery, physiology, and palliative care.

During the first few months of fellowship, fellows will find a mentor and research project. Each faculty member conducting research presents their research to the fellows. The fellowship directors will meet with each new fellow to help them decide on a project, and will facilitate discussions with researchers outside of the division if a fellow has a particular interest. Fellows will also pick other faculty members to be on their Scholarly Oversight Committee (SOC), which will provide guidance to that fellow throughout their training. Fellows meet with their SOC members twice per year for updates and advice on their progress. Fellows are expected to submit their research as a manuscript to a peer-reviewed journal in order to graduate. The majority of our fellows not only have submitted one manuscript, but have had several accepted during their training.

Our fellows are encouraged to present their research at national and international conferences. Nearly all of our third year fellows have presented their research at the Pediatric Academic Society/Society for Pediatric Research (PAS/SPR) annual convention, the preeminent neonatology conference in the world. In addition, many have presented at other conferences, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, in addition to local and regional meetings. The Department of Pediatrics often provides additional funding for travel to the PAS/SPR meeting for presenting fellows.

We recognize the importance of training fellows to become successful physician scientists, and have the ability and expertise to help each fellow achieve their research goals. Our faculty take great pride in training fellows and watching them achieve success in their scholarly project. We are confident that if you choose our fellowship program, you will have the ability to become an excellent clinician and be competitive in your future research endeavors.

  Research Component

Approximately 21 to 24 months of training will be devoted to research. Neonatology faculty members are carrying out several research projects. There is excellent collaboration with basic science faculty members in several of these research projects. In addition, there is ample opportunity to devise research projects with other basic science and clinical faculty. Basic science projects that are currently ongoing in the division include studies using an animal model of neonatal pulmonary hypertension to evaluate the pathogenesis of the disorder (the role of various endogenous vasodilators and vasoconstrictors such as nitric oxide, prostaglandins and other arachidonic acid metabolites), studies of vascular endothelium (signal transduction, Ca2+ signaling, free radicals, nitric oxide), and studies of pharmacogenomics, teratogens and their effect on fetal development. Current ongoing clinical projects include the study of institutional ethics, end of life care in the perinatal period, evaluation of neuro-developmental and audiological outcome of healthy term newborns with non-hemolytic hyperbilirubinemia, the effect of body position on breathing patterns and pulmonary mechanics in healthy infants, and studies of inhaled nitric oxide on PPHN.

Fellows receive excellent mentoring at all levels of training. They are required to complete a research project before the end of the third year and to have at least one or more first author publications in a peer reviewed journal. In order for them to complete a successful research project, a faculty mentor along with two additional faculty members, will be assigned to assist and monitor their progress by meeting twice yearly with a Scholarship Oversight Committee. Fellows will also be expected to present their research periodically in formal conferences to the faculty. The senior faculty and others provide guidance in grant writing, paper presentations, and manuscript writing in the Medical College of Wisconsin. Fellows will be expected to take courses in biostatistics and will have the opportunity to take courses in specialized areas of research Interests (e.g. molecular biology).

Fellows are encouraged to submit abstracts to national meetings annually (both basic science and pediatric meetings, such as Pediatric Academic Society Meetings). The Department of Pediatrics pays for the expenses to attend these meetings through the academic development fund assigned to each fellow.

  Terms, Conditions and Benefits of Employment

Fellows starting the program prior to July 1, 2015, are employed by the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW).

The Board of Directors of MCWAH establishes stipends for housestaff. The stipend levels for the academic year beginning July 1, 2017 are:

  • PGIV-$62,420
  • PGV-$65,580
  • PGVI-$67,690
  • PGVII-$69,790
  • PGVIII-$71,050

See MCW Benefits for information regarding vacations, leaves and insurance.

Professional Liability
The MCW Professional Risk Management Department coordinates the professional liability self-insurance program and assures liability coverage with the Wisconsin Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund in excess of the primary annual limits of $1,000,000 per incident and $3,000,000 in the aggregate. Providers are covered for activities within the scope of duties for the MCW.

Fellows starting the program on or after July 1, 2015 will be employed by Medical College of Wisconsin Affiliated Hospitals (MCWAH).

See MCWAH Benefits, Conditions & Terms of Employment for information regarding vacations, leaves, insurance, stipends and professional liability.

Professional Liability
The MCW Professional Risk Management Department coordinates the professional liability self-insurance program and assures liability coverage with the Wisconsin Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund in excess of the primary annual limits of $1,000,000 per incident and $3,000,000 in the aggregate. Providers are covered for activities within the scope of duties for the MCW.

  After Fellowship

After fellowship, our fellows go on to do great things! Over the years, we have found that fellows who graduate from our program have a 75/25 split between academic and private practice. We believe that the training you receive at the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin through the Medical College of Wisconsin Affiliated Hospitals will prepare you well for any practice setting and any direction your career may take.

Our board review series and the clinical knowledge and skills you will acquire during your fellowship will prepare you to pass your neonatology boards. Over the last 5 years, our fellows have had a 93% pass rate on the first try.

For those interested in private practice, there is a thriving private practice group in Milwaukee that several of our previous fellows have chosen to join. Other fellows are working in private practice in California, Minnesota, and Michigan.

For those interested in academics, our fellows have become attendings at:

  • Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI
  • Cincinnati Children’s, Cincinnati, OH
  • Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH
  • Helen DeVos Children’s Grand Rapids, MI
  • Children’s Mercy, Kansas City, MO
  • University of Florida, Jacksonville, FL
  • Advocate Christ, Chicago IL
  Living in Milwaukee

Milwaukee is a city of over 1 million people located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Despite the common belief, it’s not that cold!  Milwaukee has similar winter temperatures and snow fall as Chicago and New York.  We have 4 seasons and plenty of outdoor activities no matter the time of year. Milwaukee is home to several universities (Marquette, UWM, and Mount Mary) as well as several professional sports teams (Bucks, Brewers, Admirals, and Wave). We also have a variety of museums, theaters, opera, symphony, ballet, and the highly respected Milwaukee Zoo. Milwaukee is also home to an expanding food scene with many unique restaurants including farm-to-table, breweries, and popular chains.  Altogether, there is always something to do around this city!

In the summer, the city is host to cultural festivals nearly every weekend, as well as Summerfest, the largest music festival in the world. Spring and fall are great times for hiking or exploring one of the many state parks surrounding Milwaukee, or popping into a farmer’s market on the weekends. Road trips to nearby locals such as Door County or Madison are worth exploring. Winter is a great time to find a ski hill or an indoor water park to break up winter days. No matter the season, fun can be found around Milwaukee!

The city of Milwaukee is organized into neighborhoods but no matter where you choose to live, the city is very easy to drive. The hospital is located in a suburb area, in a very safe and friendly neighborhood. Some fellows choose to live in either the downtown area (15-20 minute drive to work) or suburbs surrounding the hospital. Many fellows live within a 10 minute drive to the hospital in a family-friendly neighborhood setting. The cost of living in Milwaukee is very affordable and many fellows find it possible to buy or rent houses if they choose.

Fellowship Program Contact

Pediatrics Neonatology
Department of Pediatrics
Children's Corporate Center, Suite C410
999 N. 92 St.
P.O. Box 1997
Wauwatosa, WI 53226

(414) 266-6820 | Fax: (414) 266-6979

Program Director
Girija Ganesh Konduri, MD | gkonduri@mcw.edu

Associate Director
Vijender Karody, MD | vkarody@mcw.edu

Associate Director
Scott Welak, MD | swelak@mcw.edu

Fellowship Coordinator
Connie Chase | cchase@mcw.edu
Laura Walker | lawalker@mcw.edu
 

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