Dual Critical Care/Cardiothoracic Fellowship

Dual ACCM/ACTA Track

Choosing to receive training in both Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine (ACCM) and Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology (ACTA) is the right decision for many applicants. These fellowships provide complementary skillsets that are ideal for candidates looking for a career in academic anesthesiology practicing both cardiothoracic anesthesiology and critical care.

We believe the University of Colorado offers an ideal place for Dual Track training in ACCM and ACTA. The Critical Care and Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology sections are both involved in a busy, diverse clinical practice and are also engaged in clinical and basic science research. However, the greatest asset of our fellowships is the collegiality and collaboration between the two sections which include four faculty dual trained in ACCM and ACTA. Because of this, we are able to create a learning environment that provides a rich clinical experience, mentorship for career paths in private practice, academic and research, and a strong foundation for lifelong learning.

Since the ACGME dictates that all the milestones and requirements for each fellowship must be completed within one academic year, it is difficult to create a truly integrated fellowship path for the Dual ACCM/ACTA Track. However, within the confines of these rules, our Dual Track aims to create an experience that is unique and well beyond the experience of completing both fellowships sequentially. The sections below will review the application process as well as give a sample curriculum for a Dual Track fellow. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any inquiries.

Lyndsey Grae

Lyndsey Grae, MD
Assistant Professor of Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology
Program Director, Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology


Sarah Alber, MD
Assistant Professor of Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine
Program Director, Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine Fellowship
Program Director, Combined Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine Track

Sample Curriculum

Year 1 – Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine

  • 8 blocks of core ICU rotations in Cardiothoracic and Surgical Trauma ICU
  • 2 blocks of additional ICU rotations in Medical and Neuro ICU
  • 1 block each of point of care ultrasound, academic/research, and elective rotations
  • Attendance and engagement in Critical Care Grand Rounds, POCUS fellow conference, CTICU quality improvement committee, Critical Care Journal Club
  • Formal curriculum in teaching and quality improvement/patient safety with expert faculty from Academy of Medical Educator and Institute for Healthcare Quality, Safety and Efficiency

Year 2 – Adult Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology

  • 9 blocks of core cardiothoracic OR rotation
  • 1 block each of perfusion, elective and critical care rotations
  • ½ block each of pediatric cardiac anesthesiology and cardiology rotation
  • Didactics in Cardiothoracic Anesthesia Lecture Series, Cardiac M&M and Journal Club
  • Quality improvement project with cardiothoracic anesthesiology, cardiac surgery and perfusion faculty

Longitudinal Educational Curriculum throughout both years

  • Critical Care Ultrasound Conference
  • CU GME Quality and Safety Academy
  • Research meetings with program directors and research faculty
  • TEE Echo Rounds
  • Conference attendance and presentation at SCCM, IARS, SCA and other major, international conferences
  • 2-Year Career Development Curriculum:
  • Lecture series and panels on medical education, administrative, quality improvement and clinical research topics
  • Leadership training, Teaching Certificate Program, Medical Educator Workshops
  • Year 1 and Year 2 goals and objectives for each topic

Application Process

Both the ACCM and ACTA fellowships participate in the San Francisco Match and the Dual ACCM/ACTA Track is a match exemption scenario of the SF Match. More information about the match exemption process is described by the Society of Cardiovascular Anesthesiologists and a guiding document has been developed by the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists.

At the University of Colorado, we begin the Dual Track with the ACCM fellowship followed by the ACTA fellowship. Because of this, applicants interested in the Dual Track must apply to the ACCM fellowship in the SF Match and check off the dual match box in the application and fill out the supplemental questionnaire. At this point, the application for the Dual Track will be considered completed and no further action is needed.

A concurrent ACTA application may aide the application by including letters of recommendation and personal statements specific to a career in cardiothoracic anesthesiology. Therefore, an applicant may wish to submit an application for ACTA as well but this is not a requirement.

Contact Us

Applicants with further questions for the Dual Track can contact:

Alyson Poeppelman
Residency and Fellowship Coordinator

Department of Anesthesiology
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
12631 E. 17th Avenue, Mail Stop 8202
Aurora, CO 80045



Anesthesiology (SOM)

CU Anschutz

Leprino Building

12401 East 17th Avenue

7th Floor

Aurora, CO 80045

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