How large is the Pediatric Endocrinology Fellowship Program?
We currently have 12 fellows in our program (four fellows per year).
Do you need external funding for any part of the fellowship?
No, all of our fellowship positions are funded through the Department of Pediatrics.
What tracks do you offer?
We have three tracks: research, clinical, and quality improvement. A fellow chooses which track he/she will be on approximately six months into their fellowship. We do not hire into certain tracks or require specific numbers of fellows in any track.
How large is Texas Children's Hospital?
As one of the nation's largest, not-for-profit pediatric hospitals with licensure for over 650 beds, this state-of-the-art facility provides primary, secondary and tertiary care for a diverse population of chronically and acutely ill children. Texas Children's Hospital is an internationally recognized full-care pediatric hospital located in the Texas Medical Center in Houston. One of the largest pediatric hospitals in the United States, Texas Children's Hospital is dedicated to providing the finest possible pediatric patient care, education, and research. In addition, every pediatric subspecialty can be found at TCH. Training in a fellowship housed in a hospital that has so much to offer will provide trainees opportunities in patient care, education and research parallel to none.
Texas Children’s Hospital ranks 3rd nationally among all children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report
Texas Children’s Hospital again ranks fourth among the approximately 180 pediatric centers surveyed by U.S. News & World Report in their 2016-17 edition of Best Children’s Hospitals. Consistently ranked as a national leader, Texas Children’s is one of only 11 children’s hospitals to achieve the Honor Roll designation nationally, and the only hospital in Texas – and the southern United States – awarded this distinction. In the last 10 years, no other pediatric hospital in the state has ever achieved an overall ranking as high as Texas Children’s.
How many faculty do you have?
We have 30 pediatric endocrinologists on staff and 4 nurse practitioners. Our faculty comes from a variety of programs including Texas Children’s Hospital, Stanford, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, University of Pittsburgh, Emory, Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital and National Institutes of Health.
What is your inpatient service like?
We have two inpatient teams – one for diabetic patients and 1 for endocrine patients. Each team has a separate fellow and attending and is run with the help of residents and medical students. On average, each team rounds on 10-15 patients daily, including consults.
How is call covered?
First-year fellows take one-two calls per weeknight (Monday through Thursday) and no more than one-weekend call per month. Parent calls are covered by a Certified Diabetic Educator from 5-9 p.m. on weekdays (Monday through Friday). Second-year fellows have less than three weeks of inpatient service and take occasional weekend calls. Third-year fellows do six weeks of inpatient service, four of which are as acting attendings, and occasional weekend call.
Do you have a fellow continuity clinic?
Yes. Every Friday (either morning or afternoon), fellows see their own patients in clinic and are precepted by a core group of faculty. Fellows have control over their patient roster. The type of referrals each fellow sees is built to ensure a fellow has a broad exposure to all of pediatric endocrinology. In the second half of the third year, fellows do a full-day of continuity clinic to help prepare them for their new roles as attendings.
What is the educational curriculum?
We are committed to the education and success of our fellows. We have more than one full-time employee committed to the fellowship program and a dedicated fellowship program administrator. We believe strongly in educating our fellows through a learner-centered curriculum. Thus, we utilize a “flipped-classroom”, team-based learning style for a majority of our educational offerings. Our curriculum also includes traditional lectures, career development sessions, and PREP sessions.
How do you orient your fellows?
July of first-year is an orientation month free of clinical duty. This month allows for instruction in pediatric endocrine emergencies, using the electronic medical record, sessions in our simulation lab, educational sessions with important clinical staff (dietitians and educators), shadowing on the inpatient and outpatient rotations, as well as other important items. Additionally, fellows have a significant amount of time to study for pediatric boards and settle into Houston.
What specialty clinics do you offer?
We have separate clinics for gender medicine, long-term cancer survivors, thyroid nodules and cancer, lipids, PCOS, skeletal dysplasia, metabolic disorders, Prader-Willi Clinic, CFRD, and bariatric surgery and obesity.
Do your fellows cover or rotate through the off-campus sites?
Routinely, our fellows are not asked to rotate through off-campus sites. Fellows who choose to enter our clinical track will do a two-month rotation at our West Campus in Katy, Texas. This will offer them the opportunity to provide inpatient and outpatient service in a smaller hospital setting, which is applicable to many other national job opportunities.
Do you offer Masters programs?
Yes, there is the opportunity to earn a master’s degree in medical education or public health. These master’s degrees are sponsored by the Department of Pediatrics through an application and selection process.
Who will assist me in my career development?
All fellows are assigned a faculty advisor at the start of their fellowship. The role of the faculty advisor is to help the fellow transition well from residency, assist in personal well-being, guide progress in clinical knowledge, and assist them as they choose a fellowship track. Throughout the year, we provide career development workshops and sessions within our section and within the Department of Pediatrics Fellows College including, How to pick a mentor and be a mentee, How to choose a research question, How to write an IRB, How to create a CV, How to write a publication and many others. Second-year fellows attend the month-long Fundamentals of Clinical Investigation through Baylor College of Medicine, which provides lectures on appropriate research design, basics of biostatistics, ethical conduct of research and regulatory issues governing research. Fellows will also have the assistance of their research mentor in the later years of fellowship.
Does the Division provide educational funds?
Yes, each fellow is given funds to travel to at least one conference per year. Fellows are encouraged and receive instruction on how to apply for travel grants to attend additional conferences. Additionally, fellows receive a care package with three textbooks and other helpful tools for clinical practice upon arrival to the program. They also receive funds to buy one book per year.
Do you offer instruction in quality improvement?
Yes! Our fellows receive formal instruction in quality improvement in Fellows College. Fellows College is run through the Department of Pediatrics and includes fellows of all subspecialties. Fellows are excused from clinical duties to attend the sessions. Fellows complete one quality improvement project in a team every year. In addition, our division is committed to quality improvement and has multiple faculty certified in QI led by Dr. Sarah Lyons our Chief Quality and Safety officer. This offers multiple opportunities for additional instruction in QI projects.
How are fellow’s concerns addressed?
We are committed to providing an excellent experience for our fellows and take fellows concerns and suggestions very seriously. We hold monthly meetings involving all of the fellows and the fellowship program leadership. At these sessions, the fellows are encouraged to bring up any concerns they may have. In addition, we have a chief fellow (one of the third-year fellows) who can also serve as a liaison between the leadership and the fellows for any issues the fellows are reluctant to address individually. Examples of changes made directly as a result of fellow suggestions include: splitting the inpatient service into two teams, having CDE phone coverage of parent calls in the evenings, and restructuring templates in fellows clinic among others. These changes demonstrate the high commitment of our division to our fellowship program.
What percentage of your fellows go into academia vs. private practice?
Approximately 90 percent of our fellows choose positions in academia. Our current group of faculty is a mix of graduates from our own and other programs.
How successful are your fellows at passing their pediatric endocrine boards?
In the past five years, our Board Pass rate is 91 percent.