Dr. Robert N. Sladen is Chief, Division of Critical Care Medicine  

Dr. Sladen is Medical Director of the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU) and Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).  He is also Medical Director of Respiratory Therapy at CUMC.  Dr. Sladen is a Fellow of the American College of Critical Care Medicine (FCCM), and a Past-President of the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists (SOCCA and the Association of Anesthesiology Subspecialty Program Directors (AASPD).  He is also a Past-Chair of the Board of Trustees of the International Anesthesia Research Society (IARS).  Dr. Sladen is a recipient of the SOCCA Lifetime Achievement Award and the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) Shubin-Weil Master Clinician/Teacher: Excellence In Bedside Teaching Award.

Dr. Vivek Moitra is Program Director, Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine (ACCM) Fellowship

Dr. Moitra is Associate Medical Director of the Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).  He is Chair of the NYPH Critical Care Therapeutics Committee and a member of the Executive Steering Committee for Simulation.  He is a member of the Postgraduate and Fellowship Education Committee of SCCM and has served as Annual Meeting Co-Chair of SOCCA.  Dr. Moitra is a Question Writer for the ACCM Board examinations, and an Oral Examiner for the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA).

In addition to Dr. Sladen and Dr. Moitra, the Department Critical Care Faculty include Drs. Tricia Brentjens, Martin Chen, Daniela Darrah, Alan Gaffney (Associate Medical Director, CTICU), Sumeet Goswami, Jonathan Hastie, May Hua, Desmond Jordan, David Kiamanesh, Steven Miller, Teresa Mulaikal, Oliver Panzer, Amanda Powers, Monica Goldklang, Peter Salgo, Julia Sobol and Gebhard Wagener.

Clinical Experience
Each year up to nine positions are available in this 12-month ACGME-accredited program.  It is designed to take the Fellows through increasing levels of experience and responsibility and prepare them for Board Certification in Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine (ACCM).  The Fellows supervise and teach anesthesiology and surgery junior house staff and medical students under the direction and guidance of the ICU Faculty.

The Fellows’ year is organized into 13 four-week blocks.  During the first two months, every Fellow undergoes a one-week immersion in ultrasound, including an introduction to transthoracic echocardiography (TTE), hemodynamic transesophageal echocardiography (hTEE) and thoracic, abdominal and vascular ultrasound.  They have an additional one-week immersion in management of ventricular assist devices and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation.  During these introductory educational weeks Fellows are freed of clinical duties and overnight call.

About 50% of the year is spent as a key member of the ICU team on the Milstein CTICU (21 beds), Heart Center CTICU (10 beds) and SICU (16 beds).  Together, these units provide postoperative care for nearly 3000 patients each year.  The units are “closed”: all orders must be written by the ICU team, but there is close collaboration with the surgery, cardiology, pulmonary medicine and transplant services involved.  Strong emphasis is given to the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to critical care involving colleagues from other services, nursing staff, pharmacists, respiratory therapists, physical therapists, nutritionists, medical social workers as well as palliative care and ethics services.

The CTICU admits patients following heart or lung transplantation, ventricular assist device (VAD) insertion, veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VA-ECMO), coronary revascularization and valve surgery, aortic reconstructive surgery, minimally invasive valve surgery and pulmonary thromboendarterectomy.  We have a very close relationship with the heart failure teams (VAD and heart transplant) and every morning at 9 am there is a VAD round in which members of the VAD cardiac surgery, cardiology and CTICU teams round together on VAD patients in CTICU to plan strategy and exchange ideas.

The SICU supports a very busy liver, kidney-pancreas and multi-organ transplantation service; an acute care surgery service; major thoracic and vascular surgery and a wide variety of general and subspecialty surgical procedures.  CUMC is also a referral center for high-risk obstetric cases such as placenta previa.  There is a similarly close collaborative relationship with the Liver Transplant Team, as well as Attendings, Fellows and residents on all surgical services.

About 25% of the year is spent on 2-4 week elective rotations tailored to the individual Fellow’s interests.  Choices for electives include rotations on the Medical ICU, Coronary Care Unit, Neuroscience ICU or Pediatric ICU, as well as preceptorships with specialists in infectious disease, nutritional support, dialysis, liver transplantation, palliative care and ethics.  In addition, all Fellows spend at least 2 weeks on the VAD service as a member of their team.

About 25% of the year is spent as the Skills Fellow.  During these weeks, Fellows provide critical care consultation outside the ICU and assist in triage; engage in hands-on experience with TTE, hTEE and thoracic, abdominal and vascular ultrasound; and have the opportunity to engage in clinical, quality improvement or research projects.

Our goal is to give our Fellows a diverse critical care experience and a progressive level of responsibility.  Call is organized into a night float rotation in the SICU and an overnight call in CTICU.  As such, there is no disruption of the Elective or Skills rotation by overnight call.  The call pool is expanded beyond the Fellowship group by Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology Fellows on rotation as well as PGY-4 anesthesiology or surgery residents doing electives in critical care.  As the year progresses the ICU Fellow takes increasing responsibility for the conduct of rounds and decision-making, while the ICU Attending remains available for backup and support as appropriate.

ICU Medical Direction and Teaching Experience
The ICU Fellows have an office with computer support and sleeping facilities directly adjacent to the CTICU and SICU.

We have two Chief Fellows, who coordinate the Fellows’ schedules and act as liaison with the Fellows’ group for administrative purposes, but there is ready and frequent access between Fellows and faculty.

Every ICU Fellow is a member of the CTICU-SICU Multidisciplinary Quality Improvement Committee, which meets monthly and includes the ICU Faculty, Patient Care Directors and senior nursing staff, and representatives from Step-down units, Respiratory Therapy, Physical and Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Palliative Care, Social Services, Nutritional Support, Laboratory and Hospital Quality Assurance.  The Chief Fellows lead the Multidisciplinary Action Group (MAG) that coordinates activities of the Multidisciplinary Committee. 

One of our 2013-4 Fellows, Dr. Dimitris Giannaris, who took a special interest in data acquisition for ICU bedflow management, was voted “Physician of the Year” by the CUMC Nursing Staff.

The ACCM Fellows, together with the Faculty, give lectures at the ICU Teaching Conference  for medical students and junior residents ((ICU 101), senior residents and Acute Care Nurse Practitioners (ICU 201) as well as their own Fellowship seminars (see below).  They are responsible for coordinating our monthly Morbidity and Mortality Rounds.  During the year Fellows, together with an ICU Faculty mentor, provide presentations at Department of Anesthesiology Grand Rounds and at Critical Care Grand Rounds.

Our Fellows are encouraged to attend major critical care meetings such as the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists (SOCCA) or the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM).  The Department of Anesthesiology provides $1,600 each year toward academic support and activities for each Fellow.

Academic Activities

Every Fellow is expected to complete an academic project and present an abstract and poster at the Department of Anesthesiology Annual Academic Meeting at the end of May each year.  These may include a research project (e.g. a retrospective data analysis or small prospective observational study), case report, literature review or quality initiative (QI) project.  . 

Teaching Conferences

ICU Teaching Conference (ICU 101):
Every Monday and Friday 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. 

Venue: SICU Conference Room, Milstein Hospital 4th Floor

Conference Coordinator: David Kiamanesh MD

Twice a week a one-hour tutorial is presented to the ICU junior residents, interns, medical students. These provide introductory didactic coverage of the SICU Core Curriculum to supplement rounds and bedside teaching by the ICU Faculty, pharmacists and nutritionists. In the second half of the year the ACCM Fellows take over many of the lectures themselves and so have the opportunity to hone their didactic teaching skills.

ICU Teaching Conference (ICU 201):
Every Tuesday 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. 

Venue: Heart Center CTICU Conference Room, Milstein Hospital 5th Floor

Conference Coordinators: David Kiamanesh MD

Once a week a one-hour tutorial is presented to the ICU senior residents, physician assistants and acute care nurse practitioners on more advanced ICU topics, especially those related to postoperative cardiac care.

Transesophageal Echo (TEE) Fellows' Lecture:
Every Wednesday 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. 

Venue: SICU Conference Room, Milstein Hospital 4th Floor

Lecturer: Jack Shanewise, MD (Chief, Division of Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology)

Dr. Shanewise gives a weekly lecture on TEE to the combined group of ACCM and ACTA (Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology) Fellows. This is a unique opportunity to receive what is essentially a one-year course on TEE delivered by an acknowledged expert.

Critical Care Fellows' Journal Club / M & M Conference:
Every Wednesday 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. 

Venue: SICU Conference Room, Milstein Hospital 4th Floor

Journal Club Coordinator: May Hua, MD

Dr. Hua leads a "flipped classroom" approach in which journal articles are distributed ahead of time to the ICU Fellows, who are then expected to critically appraise the studies prior to Journal Club. There is special emphasis on how to analyze study objectives, design, statistical analysis, results and discussion.

Critical Care Fellows' Core Lectures (CCFCL):
Every Thursday 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. 

Venue: SICU Conference Room, Milstein Hospital 4th Floor

Coordinator: Daniela Darrah MD, with Nina Patel MD (Pulmonary Critical Care Medicine)

These are multidisciplinary critical care lectures for our own ACCM Fellows together with the Pulmonary Medicine and Neurointensive Care Fellows. Lectures are given by ICU Faculty and non-ICU Faculty (surgeons, pulmonologists, cardiologists, ID specialists, nephrologists etc.), and Visiting Professors.

Anesthesiology Grand Rounds:
Every Thursday 7:00 - 8:00 a.m. 
Venue: Alumni Auditorium, Black Building

Coordinator: Vivek Moitra, MD

ACCM Fellows attend our weekly departmental Grand Rounds and have the opportunity to present cases 2-3 times per year.

Critical Care Grand Rounds (CCGR):
Every Thursday 3:00 - 4:00 p.m., September through June. 

Venue: Heart Center, 1st Floor, Conference Rooms 1 & 2. 

Conference Schedule Coordinator: Robert N. Sladen, MBChB, FCCM.

Critical Care Grand Rounds is a weekly conference open to all staff at CUMC; the common denominator is an interest in critical care medicine. The audience includes faculty and house staff, nursing staff, therapists, pharmacists and medical students. Columbia University Faculty and Visiting Professors who are experts in critical care and related fields present lectures. ACCM Fellows participate in giving ICU case presentations at Critical Care Grand Rounds 2-3 times each year.
In July and August CCGR gives way to the multidisciplinary introductory lectures (CCFCL).

Patient Care / Quality Improvement Conferences

Cardiac Surgery QI Meeting:
Every Monday 8:00-8:45 am.

Venue: Reemtsma Conference Room, Milstein 7-213 Hudson North

This is a multidisciplinary QI Meeting attended by the cardiac surgeons, ICU Faculty and Fellows, ACTA Faculty, nursing and many ancillary services. QI Indicators are reviewed, and our ACCM Fellows summarize goals for the long stay (i.e. greater than 1 week) cardiac surgical patients in CTICU. There is an M&M discussion of all CTICU mortalities and re-admissions.

In addition, based upon their service rotation, Fellows may attend a case review meeting with the Liver Transplant team every Friday morning, a monthly M&M meeting with the Lung Transplant Team, and a weekly case review meeting with the VAD Team.

Multidisciplinary Meeting for SICU and CTICU:

One Wednesday each month, 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. 

Venue: Heart Center Conference Room 3

This monthly multidisciplinary QI meeting is led by Dr. Sladen and addresses issues common to both ICUs. Members include ICU Faculty and Fellows, and senior leadership of nursing, pharmacy, physical therapy, nutrition, palliative care, respiratory therapy, physician assistants and nurse practitioners in SICU and CTICU. It is the most important venue for formulating and updating ICU policies, procedures and guidelines for our two units.

Division of Critical Care Faculty

Tricia Brentjens, MD

Martin Chen, MD

Daniela Darrah, MD

Alan Gaffney, MD

Monica Goldklang, MD

Sumeet Goswami, MD

Jonathan Hastie, MD

May Hua, MD

Desmond Jordan, MD

David Kiamanesh, MD
Steven E. Miller, MD

Vivek Moitra, MD 

Teresa Mulaikal, MD

Oliver Panzer, MD

Amanda Powers, MD
Peter Salgo, MD
Robert Sladen, MBChB, FCCM 

Julia Sobol, MD

Gebhard Wagener, MD

Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine (ACCM) Fellows 2014-2015

Jason Alexander, MD
(Co-Chief Fellow)
Hannah Bell, MD

Maggie Chou, MD

Peter Downey, MD

Jack Louro, MD 

Rima Rahal, MD

Sia Saatee, MD
Dennis Thiel, MD
Emily Vail, MD (Co-Chief Fellow)

Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine (ACCM) Fellows 2014-2015

Fellows Alumni List

Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Administration:
Lisa A. Hasenbalg
Executive Assistant
Division of Critical Care
Department of Anesthesiology, PH 527-B
College of Physicians & Surgeons of Columbia University
630 West 168th St, New York NY 10032
Tel: 212-305-8633

Fellowship Application Checklist
Fellowship Application

Fellowship Applications

Please note that for the 2016-7 ACCM Fellowship year, we are participating in the San Francisco (SF) Match process.  This requires the use of the ACCM Common Application Form.

We will be conducting interviews until April 30th, 2015 so the final date for application submission is March 31st, 2015.

For more detailed information on the Fellowship Application Process, please e-mail Ms. Hasenbalg at lh2120@cumc.columbia.edu, or call her at 212-305-8633. Her mailing address is:

Ms. Lisa Hasenbalg
Executive Assistant, Division of Critical care Medicine
Department of Anesthesiology, PH 527-B
College of Physicians & Surgeons of Columbia University
630 West 168th St,
New York NY 10032


Columbia University Medical Center Department of Anesthesiology