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The Postgraduate Training Program in Digestive Diseases at Yale School of Medicine is designed to prepare individuals for academic careers in digestive diseases. A scholarly environment ensures a broad educational experience for trainees interested in academic clinical practice, clinical research, or basic science research. All physicians enter after completing a residency in Internal Medicine. Postdoctoral fellows who have completed their doctoral studies or graduate students are also major participants in our research training program. Six new trainees enter the program each July.


Digestive Diseases Fellowships At Yale

Digestive Diseases Fellowship Leadership

  • Fellowship Director (Digestive Diseases)

    Dr. Assis received his M.D. from Jefferson Medical College followed by internship and residency at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, where he was also Chief Resident. He completed training in gastroenterology and hepatology fellowship under the T32 research track at Yale followed by transplant hepatology fellowship also at Yale.

    His clinical and research interests are focused in autoimmune and cholestatic liver diseases. Specifically, he treats patients with autoimmune hepatitis, primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), and primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) at his liver clinic. He performs translational and basic research on autoimmune hepatitis, PSC, and PBC using human biospecimens in addition to work with animal models. He is investigating the link between the pro-inflammatory cytokine macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) and autoimmune hepatitis, and the effect of psychological stress on autoimmune hepatitis. He is also studying human bile-derived organoids, and their interaction with T-cells, to elucidate the pathophysiology of PSC and identify novel therapeutic approaches. He is active in the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD), as current co-chair of the writing group on Guidance for PSC, and former member of of the writing group on Guidelines for autoimmune hepatitis. 

    In addition to this work, Dr. Assis is an active member of the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Program at Yale. In this role, he evaluates and treats patients with Cystic Fibrosis who have GI or liver complications of their disease. He consults on patients from outside Yale's Cystic Fibrosis program who have these complications. He also performs clinical research on Cystic Fibrosis liver involvement and is active in the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

  • Associate Program Director (Digestive Diseases)

    Jill joined the Division of Digestive Diseases at Yale University as an Assistant Professor after completing her fellowship here at Yale. She will serve as the director of the Yale Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders Program. She graduated from the University of Medicine and Dentistry – New Jersey Medical School and then went on to complete her residency at Rutgers University – New Jersey Medical School, where she also served as Chief Medical Resident.

    Dr. Deutsch has an interest in functional gastrointestinal disorders and complementary and alternative medicine in gastroenterology, both topics on which she recently authored book chapters. She additionally has a passion for education and was awarded a grant from the American Gastroenterological Society in 2018 to build a Neurogastroenterology Motility Curriculum for GI fellows in training. To build on her background in education, she will serve as the associate program director for the fellowship in digestive diseases. Dr. Deutsch also serves as an associate editor for the Fellows and Young GI Section of Digestive Diseases & Sciences. 

    Jill is a certified yoga instructor and developed a curriculum to foster resident wellbeing, a topic which she is passionate about and has woven throughout her clinical practice culminating in to her position as the director of wellness for the Division of Digestive Diseases. 

  • Fellowship Director (Advanced Endoscopy)

    Dr. Aslanian is an advanced endoscopist who specializes in pancreas and biliary disorders including pancreas cysts, masses, chronic pancreatitis, bile duct stones and strictures, diagnosis and treatment of Barrett's esophagus, early esophageal and gastric cancer, stenting of the esophagus and small bowel and difficult colonoscopy and polypectomy. He performs endoscopic ultrasound (EUS), EUS-FNA, FNB (fine needle aspiration and biopsy), celiac neurolysis and pseudocyst drainage, ERCP, enteral stenting, endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR), endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD), POEM and advanced imaging. He is the Director of Endoscopic Ultrasound and the Yale Advanced Endoscopy Fellowship.

    Meet Dr. Harry Aslanian>>

  • Fellowship Director (Advanced Transplant Hepatology)

    Michael Schilsky, MD, became medical director of liver transplantation at Yale New Haven Hospital in 2007, with appointments in medicine and surgery at the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Schilsky received his medical degree from the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine. He completed his residency and fellowship in gastroenterology and research training in liver diseases at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center. His clinical and research interests include transplant hepatology, inherited metabolic disorders of the liver, Wilson disease and hemochromatosis. Dr. Schilsky previously served as director of the liver medicine clinic at the Recanati/Miller Transplantation Institute at Mount Sinai Medical Center and medical director for liver transplantation at the New York Weill Cornell Medical Center, where he developed a comprehensive program for the care and evaluation of liver transplant patients. Dr. Schilsky coauthored the AASLD practice guidelines for Wilson disease and is author of numerous original manuscripts and reviews.

  • Fellowship Director (Advanced Inflammatory Bowel Disease)

    Badr Al Bawardy, MD, is a gastroenterologist at Yale Medicine specializing in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. He performs the following procedures: esophagogastroduodenoscopy (a diagnostic endoscopic procedure for the upper digestive tract, also known as EGD), colonoscopy, chromoendoscopy, and video capsule endoscopy.  

    Dr. Al Bawardy earned his M.D. with distinction from the George Washington University. After medical school, he completed an internal medicine residency, gastroenterology fellowship and a specialized inflammatory bowel disease fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, which gave him valuable experience treating the disease alongside leaders in the field.  

    IBD is a chronic medical condition affecting the gut, and often requires doctors to build long-term relationships with patients to manage their care. This type of medical care was appealing to Dr. Al Bawardy. He is a proponent of shared decision making in management of IBD. When meeting patients, Dr. Al Bawardy discusses risks, benefits, and goals of treatment with his patients so they can make an informed decision about their care. He also asks them about their preferences related to lifestyle and career, for example. He takes all this information into account when developing a treatment plan.  

    “My patient-care philosophy is that the patient always comes first,” he says.  

    In addition to caring for IBD patients, Dr. Al Bawardy’s clinical interests include evaluating and treating patients with celiac disease, microscopic colitis and  general gastroenterology. Dr. Al Bawardy also conducts research and is an assistant professor of medicine (digestive diseases) at Yale School of Medicine. 


We participate in the National Resident Matching Program/Specialty Matching Services (NRMP/SMS), also known as the Match. Applications to our fellowship program are through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS). If you have any questions or comments, please contact Karen Lawhorn at the following address:

Karen Lawhorn
Program Coordinator

Yale School of Medicine
Section of Digestive Diseases
P.O. Box 208019
New Haven, Connecticut 06520-8019

Phone: 203-785-7012
Fax: 203-737-1755

Graduate Medical Education at YNHH

  • After the initial 18 months, those fellows who are destined for clinical practice will receive additional clinical training that often includes an area of focused interest. During the Advanced Training Period these Fellows receive in-depth training in biliary and pancreatic endoscopy. Trainees are also expected to participate in relevant clinical research under the preceptorship of a designated faculty member.

  • The Investigational Training Program in Gastroenterology supports trainees interested in acquiring research training in the physiology and pathophysiology of gastrointestinal tract function. The training program's faculty include investigators that study cell and molecular biology and physiology and pathophysiology of intestinal epithelium and the pancreatic acinar cell with particular emphasis on the mechanisms of intestinal ion transport as related to diarrheal disorders and cellular events related to the initiation of pancreatitis.

  • This is a one year funded training program with a focus on endoscopic ultrasound and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatogram (EUS/ERCP). The advanced fellowship starts in July of each year and applications are accepted year-long. The position is filled in the winter or spring over one year prior to the start date.

  • The Section of Digestive Diseases offers a one-year fellowship in Transplant Hepatology. This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and fulfills the requirement for the ABIM certifying examination in transplant hepatology. Our program offers the full range of training with exposure to adult and pediatric transplantation and living donor liver transplant performed at Yale New Haven Hospital.

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