Pediatric Infectious Diseases Fellowship

City Park Landsacpe

Overview

The University of Colorado School of Medicine (CU SOM) offers a three-year, well-rounded fellowship training program in the field of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. The program is run by the CU SOM Section of Pediatric Infectious Disease and has its clinical base at Children’s Hospital Colorado. Dr. Donna Curtis is the Program Director of the Fellowship Training Program and can be reached at Donna.Curtis@childrenscolorado.org. The goals of our fellowship program are to prepare fellows for a career in academic medicine, with strong emphasis on excellence in clinical care, teaching, and setting the foundation to become productive and independent researchers. The first year of the fellowship is devoted primarily to clinical training and identifying a primary research project and mentor. The second and third years have less time on the clinical service and are primarily devoted to research activities. We have over 20 infectious diseases faculty with a broad range of experience from basic science research to clinical research, expertise in HIV and other immunocompromised patients including transplant, global health, education and much more. Please click on the link under “Faculty” for information about our faculty members.

The Pediatric Infectious Diseases fellowship program has been fully accredited by the Residency Review Committee of ACGME since 1998. Our Fellowship participates in the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) and National Residency Matching Program (NRMP). We have at least four fellows at any one time, and accept one to two fellows per year for our three year fellowship.

Program Aims

  1. Provide fellows with the clinical training to be proficient in: the mastery of subspecialty knowledge; the provision of evidence-based patient-centered care; promoting patient safety and advocacy; communication with families and other providers; and the pursuit of lifelong learning.
  2. Prepare fellows for a successful career in academic medicine by ensuring proficiency in: research methodology; quality improvement methodology; and teaching.
  3. Provide fellows with a background in infectious disease epidemiology and public health including: population-based and hospital-based infection prevention and control programs; antimicrobial stewardship programs; advocacy and public policy; vaccines; and principles of global health.
  4. Provide professional development training to fellows in the following: acting as a consultant in a multi-disciplinary team; maintaining high professional standards; working as leaders; and maintaining wellness, building resilience, and minimizing burnout.

Overview

The first year of fellowship is dedicated to acquiring clinical proficiency in both inpatient and outpatient aspects of Pediatric Infectious Disease. Children’s Hospital Colorado is a freestanding, 564-bed tertiary care hospital serving a multi-state geographic area and a very broad demographic population. The hospital is home to all pediatric medical and surgical subspecialties, which provides experience caring for children with common and very rare conditions. The hospital is part of the Anschutz Medical Campus, which also is home to the University of Colorado Hospital (adult and maternal-fetal), three multi-story research complexes, and CU SOM. We have more than 20 Pediatric Infectious Diseases subspecialists, who are all part of the teaching faculty. Our fellows emerge with a very high degree of clinical competency in Pediatric Infectious Diseases care and are able to address ID issues in the previously well child to the most medically complicated child. The Pediatric Infectious Diseases consult service consults is one of the busiest consult services in the hospital and sees hundreds of inpatients and acute outpatients per year in various settings.

Inpatient Training

The first-year fellow covers approximately 6 months of the inpatient service, with the additional months covered by the second and third year fellows. While on the consult service, the fellow sees all in-hospital and acute outpatient consultations under the supervision and mentorship of the Attending Pediatric Infectious Diseases physician. Emphasis is placed on developing an accurate differential diagnosis, learning the methods of evaluating and treating the child, and taking care of the family's needs. The fellow will be exposed to a full range of infectious disease issues in a diverse patient setting. We also have a very active and successful antimicrobial stewardship program, a strong hospital infection control and epidemiology program and transplant infectious disease specialists.

Outpatient Training

All fellows also share a rich outpatient experience with half-day Pediatric Infectious Diseases and HIV clinics. The outpatient Pediatric Infectious Diseases clinic has over 1000 visits per year. The CU SOM has an active HIV program for children, youth and women called the Children’s Hospital Immunodeficiency Program (CHIP) that provides care to over 300 HIV infected persons with regular continuity and follow-up.

Supplemental Training

Additionally, during the first year, the fellow will rotate through the microbiology and virology laboratories at the University of Colorado Hospital and will complete a microbiology mini-course at Children’s Hospital Colorado. Fellows also have 3 weeks each year of concentrated time spent in stewardship, HIV/transplant/immunocompromised, global health, epidemiology and infection control, additional outpatient experience, and additional training of their choice.

 

Elective Experience

Fellows can choose to receive additional clinical training by participating in one or more of several electives offered by the fellowship. Electives include rotations in: hospital epidemiology and infection control, tuberculosis, the Infectious Diseases consultative service at Denver Health Medical Center, HIV, travel medicine, immunology, rheumatology, adult infectious diseases, or an elective of their own design.

Global Health Experience

Fellows will participate in at least 1 week of the UC Denver Pediatric Global Health and Disaster Course during their fellowship. The fellowship core curriculum also includes time in the Travel Clinic and the clinical consult service sees several patients every year with tropical infections in returning travelers. Fellows can also choose to participate in a clinical elective overseas. Our program has an established practice agreement at various sites in Guatemala where a fellow may rotate for a clinical experience or perform research. Fellows may also design their own international experiences in consultation with the fellowship director. Fellows who are interested in global health as a career will find several faculty from the Departments of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Adult Infectious Diseases, and faculty at the School of Public Health as potential mentors.

Night Call

Weekend call for fellows is divided among the fellows and averages every fourth weekend. Weeknight coverage of the pager is covered by the inpatient fellow. Fellows are supervised by a designated Infectious Disease attending at all times.

Research opportunities

Our fellows can choose to work with our world-renowned faculty and with other researchers on the CU SOM campus and at affiliated research centers. We have strong ties with the University of Colorado Center for Global Health, a division of the School of Public Health; the Children’s Hospital Colorado Adolescent HIV program; Denver Health Medical Center; the CDC Arboviral Diseases Branch in Fort Collins, Colorado; the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment; the CU SOM section of Adult Infectious Diseases; the CU SOM Department of Microbiology; and National Jewish Health. Children's Hospital Colorado is also home to an NIH-supported CCTSI (Colorado Clinical and Translational Science Institute) that is available to fellows and faculty to assist with performance of clinical investigations.

Getting Started with Research

To get started with the research process, the Program Director meets with new fellows during the first few months of training to explain the process of choosing a research mentor and project. The director and the fellow mutually agree on an interim mentor to help guide the selection process. This selection process is to be completed by spring of the first year of fellowship training. The fellow begins the process by meeting with each faculty member, not only to learn about his/her research, but the research of others in the larger research community, based on the fellow’s interest. After choosing a prospective mentor, the fellow will discuss this choice with the Fellowship Director and interim mentor, and the Fellowship Director will in turn verify plans with the mentor and clarify the responsibilities of the research mentor with the selected faculty member.

Time Devoted to Research

The second and third years of training are primarily devoted to research training. The Fellowship Director holds at least twice-yearly individual meetings with each fellow to discuss all aspects of the fellowship training program, with special emphasis on his/her research project and the mentorship provided by the research mentor. Each fellow presents twice yearly at research in progress sessions to the fellow’s Scholarship Oversight Committee and the Fellowship Director.

Fellow Expectations

Fellows are expected to complete a primary research project by the end of fellowship. Additionally, fellows are expected to gain experience writing grants (although completion of the fellowship is not contingent on the fellows’ securing grant funding), present their research findings at scientific meetings, and publish their work in relevant journals. Fellows will complete the Department of Pediatrics Fellowship Curriculum Series as a requirement of the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Conference Schedule

Conference Frequency Role of the Fellow
Citywide Pediatric ID Conference Weekly Present cases and discuss
Micro/Virology/Epi daily rounds 5 days per week, 30 minutes per day Informs lab personnel of any important clinical issues, requests special testing, reviews “unknowns” prepared by the lab, is informed of all positive blood cultures, positive viral tests on patients
Pediatrics Morning Report Daily Attend while on service 3x/week and give input to residents on Infectious
HIV Patient Management Rounds Weekly Diseases-related cases Attend and participate in discussion of patients
Pediatric ID Research Conference Monthly Present once to twice yearly to scholarship oversight committee. Attend all other research conferences by faculty and fellows
Infectious Diseases Journal Club Formal journal club 3-4 times per year but articles reviewed frequently in weekly ID case conference Organize and present 1-2 articles to faculty and fellows
Combined Adult/Ped ID Conference Monthly Formal pediatric ID case presentation with discussed with adult ID faculty and Fellows
Fellows’ didactic series Weekly  
Annual CME Conference on Pediatric Infectious DiseasesAnnual 

Other Educational Opportunities

Fellows can apply for funding through the Department of Pediatrics to complete the CU Anschutz Master of Science Degree in Clinical Science (MSCS) program.

If accepted into the program and for funding, fellows are able to complete the MSCS program with almost no out-of-pocket expense.

For fellows not in the MSCS program, the Department of Pediatric Infectious Diseases provides educational funding that allows fellows to take additional courses to supplement their fellowship training.

Fellowship Curriculum

Objectives/ Specific Skills

  1. To be thoroughly trained in the clinical practice of pediatric infectious diseases and be able to independently assess and appropriately manage infectious diseases problems commonly seen in children.
  2. To develop a research project. This will involve the acquisition of skills to ask pertinent questions; independently design appropriate experiments, analyze data, and use experimental data to answer original questions.
  3. To learn diagnostic microbiology and its application to pediatric infectious diseases.
  4. To develop the skills to be a competent teacher of Pediatric Infectious Diseases to practitioners and trainees of all levels.
  5. To fulfill the requirements for eligibility for the subspecialty board exam.

Specific skills include:

  1. Competence and interpretation of stains of primary clinical material and laboratory isolates.
  2. Working knowledge and interpretation of routine and specialized microbiological procedures.
  3. Working knowledge and interpretation of the pathology of infectious diseases.
  4. Use and interpretation of diagnostic tests and procedures.
    1. Emphasis on cost efficiency
  5. Clinical competence in the diagnosis and management of infectious diseases (inpatient and outpatient).
    1. Includes access to and interpretation of medical literature.
    2. Includes consideration of clinical trials and experimental therapeutics.
  6. Principles of infection control and epidemiology.
  7. Principles of antimicrobial therapeutics, resistance mechanisms, adverse drug reactions, and epidemiological trends.
  8. Management and use of intravenous catheters and other indwelling medical devices.
  9. Primary care of HIV infection.
  10. Interpretation of medical literature and basic statistical analysis.
  11. Fundamentals of medical investigation, either clinical or laboratory based
    1. Study design and implementation
    2. Problem solving
    3. Collation and interpretation of results
    4. Writing and publishing experimental results
    5. Ethics in scientific research
    6. Grant writing and accessing external funding sources
  12. Proficiency as a consultant
    1. Effective communication with physicians and patients
    2. Educational strategies
    3. Effective coordinator of consultants and consensus building
    4. Ethics of medical care
  13. Academic skills
    1. Public speaking
    2. Design and implementation of presentations (oral and written)
    3. Educational strategies
    4. Audiovisual skills: photography, computer graphics

Application Process

Fellow selection is accomplished by participation in the National Residency Matching Program Match service, which occurs in the fall each year. Applicants must be eligible for a Colorado medical license. International medical graduates must have a valid ECFMG (see below).

Please be aware of the following general application timeline:

ERAS Application Timeline

Monday, June 8, 2020ERAS 2021 season begins.
Tuesday, June 9, 2020Applicants can register in MyERAS and begin working on their applications.
Wednesday, July 1, 2020Fellowship applicants may begin submitting applications to July cycle fellowship programs.
August 12, 2020July cycle fellowship programs may begin reviewing applications.

NRMP Fall Match Timeline

Wednesday, September 23, 2020Match Opens 
Wednesday, October 28, 2020Ranking Opens
Wednesday, November 18, 2020Quota Change Deadline
Wednesday, December 2, 2020Rank Order List Certification Deadline
Wednesday, December 16, 2020MATCH DAY


Our fellowship participates in the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS)

  • Our application period begins every year on July 15th
  • Applications submitted to ERAS will be reviewed - July 15th through October
  • Interviews - July through Mid-November
  • Fellowships begin one year after the match with the start date of July 8th.

While completing the ERAS online application, applicants should make certain to provide us with the following documents:

  • Current curriculum vitae
  • Personal Statement outlining the reasons for choosing this specialty and applicant’s career plans
  • At least three (3) but no more than five (5) letters of recommendation from physicians familiar with the applicant, one of which should be from the applicant’s Residency Fellowship Director.

Please note that as an ACGME accredited program, our fellows must have passed the USMLE Step 3 examination or COMLEX Level 3. Currently, we require non-US applicants to possess a valid certificate from Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG). The ACGME now requires fellows to have complete pediatric residenncy training in a US or Canadian ACGME certified program prior to subspecialty fellowship training.

Our pediatric fellowship will be conducting virtual interviews for this upcoming interview season.  We look forward to sharing our programs with you and getting to know more about you.  Our planned virtual interview dates are forthcoming.


Applicants selected for a personal interview will be contacted by the Fellowship Program Coordinator.

  • Interviews are scheduled for one full day
  • Interviews occur on Thursdays

Jennifer Saulino
Program Assistant - Fellowship Program Coordinator

Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Children's Hospital Colorado
13123 East 16th Avenue, B055
Aurora, Colorado 80045
Tel: 720-777-2838
Fax: 720-777-9527
E-mail: jennifer.saulino


For additional questions, please contact:

Donna J. Curtis, MD, MPH
Fellowship Director

Associate Professor
Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Children's Hospital Colorado
13123 East 16th Avenue, B055
Aurora, Colorado 80045
Tel: 720-777-8810
E-mail: Donna.Curtis

1st Year Fellows

 Cole

Lyndsey Cole, MD

Medical School:  Washington University School of Medicine

Residency: University of Colorado Pediatric Residency

Email: Lyndsey.Cole

 

 Nguyen

Hai Nguyen-Tran, MD

Medical School: University of Minnesota Medical School

Residency: University of Colorado Pediatric Residency

Email: Hai.Nguyen-Tran

 

2nd Year Fellows

 Maxwell

Sarah Maxwell, MD

Medical School: Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine

Residency:  Memorial Health University Medical Center

Email:  Sarah.Maxwell

 

3rd Year Fellows

Dodson

Daniel S Dodson, MD, MS

Medical School: University of Michigan School Of Medicine

Residency: University of Utah

Email: Daniel.Dodson

 

Wilt

Kelly E Wilt, MD

Medical School: Wayne State University School Of Medicine

Residency: Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

Email: Kelly.Wilt

Diversity / Equity / Inclusion

Diversity

We are committed to creating a diverse environment for students, residents, fellows, and faculty. We believe that an environment of inclusiveness and respect promotes excellence, and that a setting where diversity is valued leads to the training of physicians who are prepared to practice culturally effective medicine and meet the needs of the various populations we serve.

Visit our diversity, equity and inclusion website for more information...


Well-Being / Resilience

Be well

By embracing wellness and improving personal resiliency, physicians can reconnect with the meaning of their work and fend off stress. Reducing or eliminating burnout also has practical implications for the entire department such as improving patient safety, student advancement, and the overall campus environment. 

Visit our Pediatric Well-Being and Resilience website...