Here’s a list of areas I encourage anesthesiology resident physicians to inquire about when interviewing for adult cardiothoracic anesthesiology fellowship positions.
- Educational allowance and what it can be used for (equipment, meetings, technology, subscriptions, exams, etc.)
- How often are you doing your own cases versus supervising others? It’s important to have experience with both, especially if going into academics, as supervision is definitely its own skill set.
- Is there protected didactic lecture time?
- Are all fellows expected to present at the Society of Cardiovascular Anesthesiologists (SCA) annual meeting?
- Who performs the transesophageal echocardiography guidance during structural procedures like MitraClips and Amulets? Cardiac anesthesiologists? Cardiologists?
- Who staffs the cardiovascular ICUs? At many large academic centers, there are often dual-trained CV/ICU trained anesthesiologists who can be helpful in your training and you will often work with in the OR too.
- What’s the call schedule like? Special calls for complex cases and/or transplants? If there’s a straightforward CABG at 10 PM, does the fellow get called back in to do it, or does the on-call resident do it?
- What’s the exposure to non-OR cases in sick cardiovascular and thoracic patients? For example, a screening colonoscopy in a patient undergoing evaluation for an LVAD or lung transplantation. How about exposure to vascular cases, electrophysiology, etc?
Drop me a comment below with other suggestions or questions you might have been asked!