The Critical Care Fellowship is divided into two-week or four-week rotations. At least nine months of the year are spent in the care of critically ill patients, with a minimum of seven months of responsibility in surgical units including the Cardiovascular ICU (includes cardiac and thoracic surgical patients and mechanical circulatory support patients), Burn Surgical ICU, complex airway/ENT ICU and the Surgical Intensive Care Unit. Additional ICU months are completed in the Medical ICU (MICU) and the Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit.
Elective time is available and options include, but are not limited to: Critical Care Ultrasound, Echocardiography/TEE, Interventional Pulmonology, Electrophysiology, Nephrology/dialysis, Infectious Disease, Nutrition and Metabolic Support, Palliative Care, Cardiac Surgery, Research, Education and Quality Improvement. Additional electives for ABA/ABEM fellows include Anesthesiology, Acute Pain Service, the Center for Perioperative Care (“Pre-operative Clinic”) and ENT/surgical airway management.
The exact order of the rotations is established by the program director and each fellow individually.
Fellows attend two weekly lectures on Wednesdays and Fridays which are targeted to the adult fellow learner and target topics commonly found on the ABA Critical Care Board Examination. In addition to these lectures the fellows attend weekly lectures dedicated to critical care echocardiography. These are multidisciplinary and attended by cardiology and emergency medicine fellows and taught by faculty in all three specialties.
Online board review courses and POCUS courses are provided at no cost to the fellow for self-study throughout the year.
Additionally, fellows attend and present monthly at a morbidity and mortality conference and quarterly at a multidisciplinary extracorporeal life support (ECLS) conference. These meetings are moderated by a critical care faculty member. The audience includes critical care, cardiac surgery and cardiology fellows and faculty as well as residents, nurse practitioners, and pharmacists.
The University of Cincinnati College of Medicine provides a simulation laboratory with models available and a human cadaver laboratory. These are utilized during fellowship to allow the learner increased exposure to uncommon ICU procedures including bedside emergent pericardiocentesis, transvenous pacemaker insertion, emergent cricothyroidotomy, and percutaneous tracheostomy placement.
One of the highlights of our didactic program is a monthly journal club hosted by a critical care faculty member at a local restaurant. Food and drinks are provided for an evening of educational stimulation and camaraderie.
Research is not mandatory, but is highly encouraged for this fellowship. Fellows may also participate in the department’s ongoing clinical and basic science research and are expected to participate in the division’s quality improvement projects.
Fellows will be involved in the clinical care of critically ill and injured patients. This will include direct patient management, interaction with patients and families, teaching of medical students and residents and facilitating daily multidisciplinary rounds. The majority of critical care time occurs at our main campus hospital, however, electives in community critical care settings are available.
Cardiovascular ICU (CVICU)
This 24-bed ICU serves thoracic surgery patients and both medical and surgical cardiac patients and is the cornerstone of the UC Heart, Lung and Vascular Institute. While rotating in this unit our fellows are involved in direct management of mechanical circulatory support devices including ventricular assist devices (VADs), heart transplant recipients, and extracorporeal life support (ECLS).
UCMC is the first hospital in the region to offer air and ground transport of patients on extracorporeal life support. Our fellows take a lead role in transport teams and receive ample training in air transport of ECLS patients.
Burn Special Care Unit (BSCU)
UCMC Burn Center is a regional burn referral center. Any critically ill, large body surface area or inhalation injury burn patients are cared for in this 10 bed ICU. Our fellows provide collaborative care for these patients in conjunction with the burn surgical team.
ENT/Complex Airway ICU
Our fellows provide collaborative care for ENT patients after intricate airway reconstruction and those who have had resection of head and neck cancers with complex reconstructions (including free flaps). Fellows take a lead role in planning for complex airway management and difficult extubations.
Surgical/Trauma ICU (SICU)
This unit houses 34 beds and cares for a wide array of patients including surgical oncology, abdominal organ transplantation, urology, orthopedics, thoracic and trauma among others. UC Medical Center is the only Level I adult trauma center in the region.
Neuroscience ICU (NSICU)
The NSICU is a 20-bed unit which plays a pivotal role in the support of the UC Neuroscience Institute. This ICU serves both patients after neurosurgery as well as patients suffering from non-surgical problems such as traumatic brain injuries, seizure and stroke. UCMC one of the nation’s leaders in stroke care.