Department of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh

GIM News
Donna L. Bishop, Editor

Next issue:
December 2009

Submission deadline:
November 6, 2009


Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program Gains Full Accreditation

The Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program at the University of Pittsburgh has received full accreditation through the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). The program, which is one of the first 48 programs across the country to be accredited, will begin its sixth year this summer. The fellowship is designed to produce the future leaders of the field and is distinctive among fellowship programs in that it not only has a rigorous focus on clinical skills but also offers the option of a 2-year academic program with the opportunity to earn a master's degree in either clinical education or research.

20082009 fellows Drs. Julie Childers and Rene Claxton with program director Dr. Bob Arnold

The fellowship program offers two positions per year to physicians committed to subspecializing in skilled and compassionate care for patients with life-threatening illnesses. A 1-year clinical fellowship offered by the Section of Palliative Care and Medical Ethics of the University of Pittsburgh includes the opportunity to receive a certificate in clinical education. Upon completion of the first year of the program, fellows are board-eligible in hospice and palliative medicine. A 2-year fellowship option prepares individuals for an academic career.

Fellows' clinical experiences span our quaternary care transplant program, the region's largest cancer program, and the region's largest community hospice provider (Family Hospice and Palliative Care), as well as our children's and community hospitals. The clinical focus of the fellowship is on acquiring skills in providing comprehensive care to patients with life-limiting illnesses in acute care, ambulatory care, home care, and long-term care settings. Fellows spend substantial time in each of these settings and follow patients longitudinally as they move between different settings. The role of the physician as a member of an interdisciplinary care team is emphasized in all clinical settings and encounters.

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