Educational Program

In their first 12 months of training, all fellows have a continuous, rigorous responsibility for inpatient consultative and ambulatory care as well as educational responsibilities in the form of weekly conference presentations. Fellows have intense daily interaction with faculty during the first year. This provides rigorous supervision.

Work rounds are held separately from teaching rounds. They occur 7 days per week, during which the trainees and attendings round independently to follow up on all patients previously consulted on by the Infectious Disease Consult Service (until the time of discharge or the date on which Infectious Disease follow up is no longer necessary). Some faculty members combine work and teaching rounds in the morning. Faculty members are required to examine all patients every day, insuring that faculty provide close supervision as Fellows train on all consultative issues.

The involvement of the faculty in conducting rounds is intense. At all institutions and on all rotations, teaching rounds are held daily, when all new consults are presented to the attending, as well as follow-up of patients previously consulted on by the service. In these teaching rounds, attendings discuss all aspects of diagnosis and management related to the consultative issues. They review pertinent microbiology, surgical pathology, and radiologic data, as well as relevant literature. All new consults for the day are examined at the bedside with the trainee that same day, as well as problematic follow up issues on other patients on the service.

Most of the procedures associated with the practice of Infectious Disease are carried out in the Microbiology Laboratory. Aspiration of abscesses for culture can be performed by Infectious Disease Fellows, but usually by surgeons in conjunction with consultation by the Infectious Disease Fellows. The Fellows are more responsible for collaborating on the evaluation of such materials in surgical pathology and the microbiology lab. To be sure that each microbiological procedure is well understood, ID Microbiology Rounds are held four times a week in the Microbiology Laboratory with a 60-minute session devoted to procedures being performed upon specimens from patients whom the trainees have seen in the hospital, or other interesting cases. Additionally, teaching rounds are held in Clinical Microbiology at YNHH. In these rounds, culture material (including Gram stains and culture plates) is reviewed on several contemporary patients that the Infectious Diseases trainees have consulted on. Formal didactic instruction is given weekly and includes the following topics: microbiologic staining techniques, use of microbiologic media, blood culture technology, automated systems for the isolation and characterization of fungi and mycobacteria, mycoplasma cultures, gene probe techniques for chlamydia and gonococci, fluorescent microscopy, antimicrobial susceptibility testing, parasitologic techniques including acid-fast stains and ELISA techniques for cryptosporidia, and all special techniques for identification of viruses through cell culture, antigen detection and serology.

Finally, faculty are involved in a weekly formal teaching conference, the Didactic Lecture Series, in which faculty give didactic instruction in a series of 8 lectures on antimicrobial pharmacokinetics/clinical use/adverse effects, a series of 10 lectures on HIV related issues, as well as a series of lectures on common community and nosocomial infectious disease problems.

Some of the topics include the following:

  • Summer antimicrobial series: basic principles of pharmacokinetics; pharmacology, mechanism of action, side effects and clinical use of antimicrobial agents including antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and antiparasitic agents (10 conferences)
  • Community acquired and nosocomial meningitis
  • Infective Endocarditis
  • Sepsis and Septic Shock
  • Malaria
  • Influenza
  • Pneumonia
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • Herpes Virus Infections
  • Viral and Bacterial Diagnostics
  • Travel Medicine
  • Bone and joint infections
  • Parasitology
  • Clostridium difficile
  • Urinary Tract Infections
  • Nosocomial Infections (including CDC isolation and Infection Control issues)
  • Management of the Febrile Neutropenic Patient (including fungal disease)
  • Infections in the Immunocompromised Host (including fungal disease)
  • Soft tissue infections
  • Catheter related bacteremia
  • Rickettsial Diseases
  • Diabetic Foot Infections
  • Tuberculosis
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases (a series of 6 lectures)
  • Lyme Disease
  • Antimicrobial therapy at the end of life
  • Infections of the eye
  • HIV Disease: a series of lectures on topics including antiretroviral therapy, epidemiology of HIV, psychosocial issues in HIV, HIV resistance testing, post-exposure prophylaxis, opportunistic infection prophylaxis, HIV associated malignancies, pulmonary complications of HIV, TB in AIDS, palliative care of AIDS, substance abuse/dependency, neurologic manifestations in HIV, use of laboratory surrogates in monitoring of HIV progression.

Second year clinical track Fellows programs include options of HIV/Hepatitis C, Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, or Transplant Infectious Diseases.

In preparation for their research training, traditional track (i.e., 3 year) Fellows are required to develop a research project with a faculty mentor, and write a research training proposal that is reviewed by a Research Training Committee. As the Fellows progress to their research training, they begin in their first Research Training year (i.e., the second overall year of training) with combined coursework and practical research training (either laboratory or clinical research) specific to their project under the supervision of their faculty mentor.

Most of their educational experience in the second and third years is provided by the program of the faculty member with whom the trainees are working.

Required rotations for all fellows include: STD Clinic, Travel Medicine, Antibiotic Stewardship, IDSA/SHEA Infection Control Course.

Additional electives include an International Rotation and additional Outpatient Infectious Diseases Clinic.