About the Program
The MCS/Transplant Fellowship program is dedicated to producing a balanced, well-qualified thoracic transplant surgeon prepared for practice in an academic or private practice environment. Over the course of this one-year program, the fellow will gain comprehensive experience in the management of end-stage heart and lung disease.
Throughout this one-year program, the fellow will participate in care of MCS/Transplant patients within the inpatient and outpatient setting and under the supervision of Cardiothoracic Surgery faculty. The fellow will also become proficient technically with MCS procedures as well heart and lung transplantation as well as donor management and procurement.
- Faculty have served as leaders of STS, ABS, ABTS, WTSA, TSDA, ACS, JCTSE, ISHLT, ELSO, and the ACGME Thoracic Surgery Residency Review Committee
- Division has completed 1000+ lung transplants and 900+ heart transplants
Over the course of this 12-month program, the fellow will gain comprehensive experience in the management of end-stage heart and lung disease. The fellow will participate in care of MCS/Transplant patients within the inpatient and outpatient setting and under the supervision of Cardiothoracic Surgery faculty. The fellow will also become technically proficient with durable and temporary MCS procedures and cardiac transplantation, lung transplantation, and procurement/donor management.
Performance in each area will be assessed based on competency in medical knowledge, clinical/technical skills, patient care, professionalism, interpersonal and communication skills, and systems-based practices. Attendance at the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplant and/or American Society of Artificial Internal Organs with involvement in clinical research and presentation of scholarly activity is also an expected part of professional development over the year. The fellow will also participate in the education of junior residents and fellows, as well as weekly thoracic transplant/MCS selection committee meetings. In addition, the fellow may be involved in surgical management of high-risk coronary and structural heart cases.
Cardiac Transplant and Mechanical Circulatory Support
The fellow will participate in the management of a busy mechanical support service as well as a post-operative heart transplant service, under the supervision of the transplant/MCS faculty. They will also be expected to participate in and occasionally lead the transplant weekly listing meetings, MCS operations meetings, daily MCS/transplant huddles, the Transplant/MCS journal club, the Donor organ reviews, and quality improvement sessions.
The advanced lung disease and lung transplantation rotation includes management of patients who have end stage lung disease in all clinical settings. Patients seen during this rotation have a wide variety of pulmonary diseases. Under the supervision of the transplant faculty, the fellow is primarily responsible for evaluating patients, speaking to families, and coordinating care with other health-care professionals. The fellow will learn to perform all necessary procedures related to lung transplantation and will be trained in appropriate donor/recipient matching.
While on the cardiac and thoracic rotations, the fellow will participate in both heart and lung donor evaluation and management under the supervision of MCS/transplant faculty. The fellow will also participate in the procurement and lead the procurement team in the onsite assessment of donor organs.
MCS/Transplant Fellows will work on clinical service at the University of Washington Medical Center – Montlake. UWMC is a tertiary and quaternary care referral site for the WWAMI region and serves as the primary training site for the fellowship. Fellows will split their time at this site between the Cardiac and Thoracic Services.
Each week fellows participate in didactic sessions geared towards establishing and reinforcing a comprehensive understanding of cardiothoracic surgery.
The weekly Thoracic Surgery and Cardiac Surgery Education Conferences follow the Society of Thoracic Surgeons’ thoracic surgery curriculum, which UW faculty and trainees played a key role in helping to establish.
Consistent with Coalition for Physician Accountability recommendations, all interviews will be held virtually via Zoom for the 2021 recruitment cycle.
Recruitment & Selection
Applicants must be a graduate of a US or Canadian medical school accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), a graduate of a US college of osteopathic medicine accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), or an International Medical Graduate that fits the criteria below. Canadian applicants should contact the Canadian Residents Matching Service.
Additionally, applicants must be a graduate of an ACGME accredited training or foreign equivalent in either an integrated thoracic surgery residency, a 4/3 thoracic surgery residency, or a traditional 2-year thoracic surgery fellowship. In addition, applicants must be board-eligible or certified with the American Board of Thoracic Surgery (ABTS), or foreign equivalent, as well as eligible for licensure in Washington State, which the University of Washington can assist with. For foreign applicants from non-English speaking countries, please provide evidence of language proficiency, such as IELTS/TOEFL. Currently, we are only able to support H-1B visas.
Eligible applicants will be considered based on their individual preparedness, ability, aptitude, academic credentials, communication skills, and personal qualities such as motivation and integrity. In order for Program Leadership and Cardiothoracic Surgery faculty to effectively review applications and select candidates for interviews, the following items are required:
- Current CV
- Letter of Intent outlining:
- Interest in Cardiothoracic Surgery
- Career goals
- Three current letters of recommendation
- One must be from Cardiothoracic Surgery Program Director
- Letters should be sent directly from the letter writer
- Copy of ECFMG Certificate (for International Medical Graduates)
- Applicants in need of visa sponsorship should notify the Program upon applying
Please provide application materials in pdf form.
Application Process & Dates
While the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery will accept applications on a rolling basis throughout the recruitment season, priority will be given to applications received by October 15, 2021.
- Application deadline: October 15, 2021
- Interviews: November – December 2021
- Selection: January 2022
- Anticipated start date: August 1, 2022
All interviews this year will be held virtually via Zoom.
We understand that seeing the University and the surrounding area is an important part of deciding where you want to train. We are so sorry to not be able to meet you in person this year, but our fellows, faculty, and staff are more than happy to answer all your questions about life in the hospital and the Pacific Northwest. To learn more about working at the University of Washington and living in Seattle, please take a look at our social media accounts!
The MCS/Transplant fellow works directly with the Cardiac and Thoracic Transplant faculty.
Trainees at the UW have many local and national leadership opportunities.
Past trainees have served in leadership positions for many organizations including:
- Department of Surgery Cardiothoracic Surgery Interest Group
- Department of Surgery Women’s Council
- Department of Surgery Diversity Council
- Department of Surgery Wellness Committee
- UWHA House Staff Association
- Washington State Medical Association, Resident and Fellow Section
- Society for Black Academic Surgeons
- Society of Thoracic Surgeons
- TSRA Executive Committee
- AATS Resident Representative to the ORR/AAMC
Educational & Research Conferences
Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery Annual Visiting Professor
Each spring the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery hosts its annual Visiting Professor Lectureship. This event brings leaders in the fields of Cardiac, Thoracic, and Congenital Surgery from all over the country to Seattle. Each year this event is split into two parts – in the morning residents and fellows deliver case presentations and, in the afternoon, the Visiting Professor delivers a keynote speech. The day of academia is followed by a reception and dinner for trainees, faculty, and the honored guest.
Past Visiting Professors have included:
- Sean Grondin (Department Head, Surgery; University of Calgary)
- Joseph Dearani (Chair, Cardiovascular Surgery; Mayo Clinic)
- Michael Mack (Medical Director of Cardiothoracic Surgery; Baylor Scott & White Health & Chair; BSW The Heart Hospital – Plano Research Center)
- Keith Naunheim (Director, Cardiothoracic Surgery; Saint Louis University)
- Frank Hanley (Chief, Pediatric Cardiac Surgery; Stanford University)
Harkins Symposium and Strauss Lecture
Named in honor of the Department of Surgery’s first Chairman and an esteemed University of Washington alumnus respectively, the Harkins Symposium and Strauss Lecture is a day of scholarship held each fall in which faculty across the Department of Surgery present on the insightful, cutting-edge research currently being done at the University of Washington. The Strauss Lecture is delivered each year by an invited professor who is a leader in the field of surgery.
Past speakers have included:
- Valarie W. Rusch (Vice Chair for Clinical Research, Department of Surgery; Memorial Sloan Kettering)
- Jonathan Woodson (Director, Institute for Health System Innovation & Policy; Boston University)
- Andrea L. Pusic (Chief, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery; Brigham and Women’s Hospital)
- Robert S.D. Higgens (Director; Department of Surgery; Johns Hopkins)
- Thomas M. Krummel (Emile Holman Professor Emeritus (Active), Co-Director, Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign Program, & Director, Surgical Innovation Program; Stanford University)
Resident Research Day and Schilling Lecture
Dr. John Schilling was the third Chairman of the Department of Surgery and is remembered as laying the groundwork that made the Department what it is today. In his relatively short eight-year tenure as Chair, Dr Schilling recruited 41 faculty and graduated 40 chief residents. Each year in his honor, the Department of Surgery hosts the Resident Research Day and Schilling Lecture.
Over the course of the day, residents from the five departmental divisions (General Surgery, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Transplant Surgery, Vascular Sugery, and Plastic Surgery) are invited to present their research to faculty mentors and peers. The Schilling Lecture is delivered by an invited professor who shares Dr. Schilling’s devotion to patient care, teaching, and research.
Past lecturers include:
- Mary Hawn (Chair, Department of Surgery; Stanford University)
- Caprice C. Greenberg (Morgridge Distinguished Chair in Health Services Research, Surgical Oncology; University of Wisconsin)
- Diana Farmer (Chair, Department of Surgery; UC Davis)
- Melina Kibbe (Chair, Department of Surgery, University of North Carolina)
- Walter Pories (Founding Chair of the Department of Surgery; East Carolina University)
Department of Surgery Education Seminar
Surgical education is at the heart of the Department of Surgery’s mission. Every June, the entire Department of Surgery gathers together to discuss a topic within surgical education with the goal of improving the training of our fellows as well as improving the culture of the Department. Both Faculty and trainees are invited to present and lead the discussion.
Past topics have included:
- Strategies and Best Practices for Surgeon-Patient Interpersonal Communication
- Autonomy in Surgical Education
- Wellness Education in Surgery
Salary and Benefits
The University of Washington offers residents a wide range of benefits as part of their total compensation package. These include:
- Four weeks paid vacation
- Medical, dental, and life insurance
- Retirement plans
- Coverage of certification costs
- Annual professional development fund
Since 2016 residents at the University of Washington have been represented by the University of Washington Housestaff Association (UWHA). As such the benefits and compensation for all trainees in the Cardiothoracic Surgery Traditional Fellowship program are in compliance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).
For more information on the benefits offered to residents and a copy of the current stipend schedule, visit the UW GME website for prospective residents and fellows.
In addition to the benefits offered in the CBA, the Cardiothoracic Surgery – Integrated program provides its residents with:
- Pair of 3.5x loupes in PGY 6 year
- Annual STS candidate membership
- Support for conference attendance
Where Do Residents Live?
Seattle offers its residents unrivaled access to both a vibrant, culturally diverse urban center and the storied outdoor recreation of the Pacific Northwest. When asked about the reasons that they love to live here, our faculty and trainees often cite this proximity of culture and recreation in Seattle – for instance, the opportunity to hike on the Olympic Peninsula on Saturday morning and eat at a James Beard award-winning restaurant that night.
Living in Seattle offers access to an enviable array of amenities including:
- Three ski resorts within two hours of the city
- Local MLB, NFL, MLS, WNBA teams (NHL arriving soon!)
- 60+ breweries operating within city limits
- Thriving museum culture (including art, history, cultural, and children’s museums)
- Robust theater and music scene (ranging from Seattle Symphony to Broadway shows to live concerts)
- Seattle International Film Festival
Many neighborhoods throughout the city are easily accessible to our six primary sites of practice. In a recent survey, trainees in the Department of Surgery identified where they live.
Most fellows/residents at the UW rent while in training and 97% pay $2500 or less per month.
- 61% live with a partner
- 26% have a platonic roommate
- 11% have children
- 42% have pets
- 65% have house plants
Will I Need a Car?
While many trainees in the Department of Surgery live in neighborhoods that are easily walkable to our sites of practice and Seattle is regularly ranked as one of the most bike and public transit friendly cities in the country, most of our residents own cars and drive to work each day.
This decision is often based on convenience due to the dynamic work schedule, but also affords residents the opportunity to easily explore the Pacific Northwest on their days off.
Some great examples of day trips include:
- Mount Rainier
- San Juan Islands
- Washington Wine Country
- Olympic National Forest
- Portland, OR
Community Life in our Department
In addition to holding regular education events throughout the year, the Department of Surgery also works to foster collegiality and friendship among its faculty and trainees with more social events. These include:
- Resident Happy Hours
- Department of Surgery Annual Picnic
- Department of Surgery Holiday Party
The Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery also hosts several events throughout the year including:
- Annual Residency Summer Barbeque
- Division Holiday Party
- Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery Graduation Ceremony