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Department Training Programs

“It was a wonderful rotation - I enjoyed working with the faculty and ancillary staff, and most importantly, I vastly improved my skills for single shot blocks and spinals.”
- James Fitzpatrick MD, CA3 Resident – John Hopkins Medicine, 2/11/13-3/9/13 Rotation at HSS

The Department of Anesthesiology at Hospital for Special Surgery has a paramount commitment to teaching. Although the majority of our patients receive a primary regional anesthetic, we emphasize all aspects of perioperative care for the patient undergoing orthopedic surgery.

Our Department maintains a long-standing formal affiliation with Weill Cornell Medical College, and has enjoyed teaching the residents in that program for more than two decades. Resident experience at HSS occurs in all three clinical anesthesia years. CA-1 residents are exposed to the basics of regional anesthesia and local anesthetic pharmacology. CA-2 residents are assigned to more complex cases. In the CA-3 year, the emphasis shifts to regional anesthesia for ambulatory surgery, as well as more advanced blocks, catheter techniques and ultrasound-guided techniques for peripheral blocks.

We are also very proud of our educational affiliation with the residency program at Johns Hopkins Medicine. CA-3 residents from this program come to HSS for a four week rotation in order to gain an intensive regional anesthesia experience.

Over the past decade, our Department has also entered into new academic affiliations with the training  programs at the University of California-San Francisco, the University of Washington, Virginia Mason Medical Center, and Harvard Medical School-Massachusetts General Hospital. These institutions send 1-3 fellows or CA-3 residents during the course of the academic year to HSS for training in regional anesthesia techniques, following a similar pathway to the Johns Hopkins’ model. Formal affiliations with these prestigious programs have allowed our staff to work with trainees who come to us from different programs with diverse experience. Our Department is dedicated to these relationships and to the opportunity to continually evaluate and improve the educational experience we provide.

The Department also hosts medical students from Weill Cornell Medical College on an ongoing basis. Medical students are given an introduction to the practice through specialized orientation and academic programs. They are also afforded the opportunity to visit our clinical settings under the supervision of an attending staff member and fellow. Our aim in this endeavor is to continually foster interest and growth in the specialty.

Most important to our educational mission of training the next generation of consultants is our fellowship program. The Department of Anesthesiology at Hospital for Special Surgery offers one of the largest Fellowship Program in Regional Anesthesiology and Acute Pain Medicine in the United States. Our one-year fellowship allows anesthesiologists to develop, not only clinical expertise, but also a more academic approach to regional anesthesia, and its literature. HSS has led the initiative to formalize standards for these fellowships across North America. Our Department continually evaluates and refines our own program as interest in our subspecialty grows. A two-year Clinical Research Fellowship leading to an advanced scientific degree is also available. One candidate per academic year is chosen for this two-year track. Read more about our fellowship program.

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