The overall objectives of the ACGME-accredited Fellowship Program are to insure that the trainees will be competent in all aspects of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/SCT as well as acquire the academic skills to continue in a tertiary Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/SCT environment. The trainee is expected to develop a thorough understanding of the pathophysiology of disorders related to Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/SCT and develop skills in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of these disorders. During their training, they additionally should become competent in developing skills related to the selection and evaluation of diagnostic procedures to carry out thorough evaluations of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/SCT disorders.
The training program is designed to encourage trainees to develop an interest in clinical and basic research during the first year of training. The first year is devoted to clinical inpatient responsibilities: approximately 40% hematology, 40% oncology and 20% SCT. The fellow is additionally assigned to a full day outpatient continuity clinic to follow his/her primary patients. In addition, during the first year, fellows participate in required selectives including hematopathology, blood bank and neurooncology as well as a rotation in hematology at Cornell. The second and third years are devoted to research, either laboratory based or clinical research. The fellows are encouraged to be a first author on a presentation of his/her research project at a national or international peer-review meeting by the end of the three years of training.
In addition to joining the fellowship program after three years of Pediatric residency, trainees now have the option of taking new modified training pathways that have been certified by the American Board of Pediatrics. The six alternative pathways are as follows: Special Alternative, Integrated Research, Accelerated Research, Subspecialty Fast-Tracking, Dual Subspecialty, and Combined Subspecialty. The Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/SCT Fellowship Program accepts candidates coming from any of these alternative pathways who have successfully completed the requirements therein. More information about these alternative pathways can be found on the American Board of Pediatrics’ website, www.abp.org.
We participate in the online universal application process via ERAS. Please visit the ERAS website.
Brief Overview Of Year 1
The first year of training is devoted primarily to the diagnosis and management of inpatients with Pediatric Hematologic, Oncologic, and immunodeficiency disorders. Specifically, the Fellows are primarily responsible for the inpatients on the Pediatric Hematology, Oncology, or SCT services that they are assigned to. During this first year, the fellows supervise the initial history and physical examination of patients admitted to these respective areas and the diagnosis and management of their specific disorders. At all times, the fellows are supervised by an attending physician.
The emphasis is on the basic evaluation, diagnosis and day-to-day management of the child with an acute or chronic blood disorder or malignancy. The entire year is spent on clinical services in order to facilitate the acquisition of skills necessary to manage newly diagnosed patients, toxicity of treatment, palliative care and the death of a child and its impact on the family.
The clinical experience is supplemented by five weeks of specialty rotations including blood banking, radiation oncology, neurooncology, hematopathology, coagulation, cytogenetics, special hematology, apheresis, and stem cell laboratory. This additional training within specialty areas enhances the knowledge acquired in the first year.
By the end of the first year, each fellow is required to identify a research project for his/her second and third years. The fellows are provided two one week blocks to explore research topics and develop a research project. Each fellow is assigned a faculty advisor to assist in finding a research mentor and insuring the fellow completes the necessary program requirements. In addition, each fellow will have a research mentor and is assigned to a scholarly oversight committee whose responsibility will be to assist, support, and monitor the fellow's scholastic and research productivity.
Brief Overview Of Year 2
The second year is primarily devoted to laboratory or clinical research. In order to transition from the clinically focused first year to a research centered second year, fellows participate in a grant writing workshop. This workshop helps to structure and develop a defined research question prior to beginning their research. The fellows continue in their outpatient continuity clinic during both the second and third years and will assume greater responsibility in the management of their primary patients. At all times supervision from the attending physicians will remain in effect. Once the research project has been specified, the fellow will begin his/her research project and the research mentor will report progress to the Program Director each quarter.
Brief Overview Of Year 3
The third year of training is devoted completely to research except for the ongoing commitment to the outpatient continuity clinic. The fellow should generally be able to complete the board requirements at the end of the third year. This includes having their research project completed, published, and/or in preparation for publication. During this time, the fellows should be planning for the future in terms of professional opportunities and career development either in clinical research and/or in basic research.
Evaluation and Communication
Each fellow meets regularly with the fellowship program director, career mentor and their scholarly oversight committee to provide and promote scholastic and research productivity. Each fellow is evaluated by supervisory faculty each quarter and every six months each faculty member is evaluated by each fellow. All evaluations are kept strictly confidential and not shared with anyone else in the department.
Darrell J. Yamashiro, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Pathology & Cell Biology
Director, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program