The curriculum of the cardiovascular diseases fellowship consists of a variety of clinical experiences and didactic conferences that take place at both the UIHC and the VAMC. Fellows rotate on several inpatient and outpatient services and provide both direct and consultative care. Fellows attend a weekly continuity clinic, alternating between the UIHC and VAMC Cardiology Clinics. For fellows interested in further training in congestive heart failure or training in adult congenital heart disease, a half-day weekly continuity clinic may be established in lieu of the VAMC clinic. Procedural skills are gained as fellows rotate through the invasive and non-invasive laboratories at both hospitals, and extensive experience in cardiac catheterization, echocardiography, and nuclear cardiac perfusion imaging is readily available.
Level 1 training in the emerging Cardiac CT/MRI techniques is readily available through the joint collaborative programs between the department of Radiology and Division of Cardiovascular Diseases. This training is acquired either on the nuclear rotation or during the outpatient rotation at the VAMC or during an elective rotation dedicated to advanced cardiac imaging.
Several conferences occur throughout the week, and a core curriculum lecture series is covered over a two year rotating cycle. Additionally, journal club takes place weekly and provides a forum to critically review the literature and to debate current topics in cardiology.
A final aspect of the curriculum involves fellow involvement in teaching. This occurs in several settings, including direct clinical teaching of Internal Medicine residents on the inpatient cardiology services (intensive care unit, heart failure service and consult service) as well as assisting in the early training of new cardiology fellows. Fellows are expected to give didactic lectures at cath conferences, echo conferences, clinical conference lecture series (cardiology grand rounds), board review lecture series, and morbidity and mortality conference. Finally, fellows participate in teaching part of the ECG course material to medical students under the direction of Dr. Donald Brown.