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The GW Rheumatology Fellowship Program is a two-year advanced medical training program fully accredited by the ACGME.
- To train physicians who are clinically competent in the field of rheumatology, and able to provide consultations in a variety of settings including outpatient and inpatient academic or private practice.
- To provide trainees with the foundation for independent research in clinical or translational rheumatology.
- To provide trainees with the foundation to become educators within rheumatology.
- To assist trainees in developing skills of life-long learning, collaborative practice, and professionalism.
Fellowship program overview
The George Washington University Rheumatology Fellowship Program is a two-year advanced medical training program fully accredited by the ACGME. Our fellowship program has unique features including faculty with different clinical interests who are dedicated to the success of our fellows, a variety of opportunities for collaborative work with colleagues in pediatric rheumatology, pulmonary medicine, dermatology, nephrology, and other specialties, and a large and diverse patient population.
During their fellowship, fellows learn the fundamentals of clinical rheumatology and participate in scholarly activities including case conferences, journal club, multidisciplinary conferences, and didactic lectures covering the full range of clinical and basic pathophysiology topics needed to become a well-rounded rheumatologist.
Introduction to Rheumatology Lecture Series
Our fellows receive didactic lectures every summer through the Washington DC Introduction to Rheumatology Series. The faculty for this lecture series are drawn from several institutions in DC and the series serves to provide incoming fellows with a strong grounding in rheumatic disease and the basics of immunology.
Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Training
The George Washington University Rheumatology fellowship program offers trainees hands-on experience with musculoskeletal ultrasound throughout the clinical training program. Graduating fellows can complete sufficient training cases to sit for the American College of Rheumatology Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Certification (RhMSUS) examination by the end of the second year of fellowship. Training in musculoskeletal ultrasound begins during the first year of fellowship and continues through the end of the second year of fellowship with a focus on obtaining the needed skills to successfully use ultrasound in clinical rheumatology practice.
Inpatient consultation service
Fellows see inpatient consultations at GW hospital. The on-service fellow directs rounds with the rheumatology team which includes the attending rheumatologist on call, residents, and medical students. The inpatient consultation service offers exposure to a wide array of patients with complex medical illnesses, including a wide spectrum of patients with complex multisystem rheumatic diseases (e.g., lupus, myositis, and vasculitis)
Outpatient clinic service
Throughout their fellowship, fellows maintain two continuity clinics in which they follow their own panel of patients longitudinally. Through these continuity clinics, fellows are responsible for all aspects of the patients’ care with support and guidance from rheumatology faculty. The case mix in the fellows’ continuity clinics includes the full spectrum of rheumatic diseases. It is expected that fellows will progressively learn to manage the longitudinal care of patients independently and comprehensively with musculoskeletal and rheumatic diseases. Fellows will gain additional clinical exposure to rheumatology patients by joining faculty in their specialized clinics including myositis clinic and musculoskeletal ultrasound clinic.
GW Fellowship Conferences
Musculoskeletal didactic lectures and hands-on sessions
These sessions are held once a week and taught by attending faculty. Sessions are meant to introduce fellows to musculoskeletal examination, musculoskeletal injection techniques, polarized light microscopy for identification of crystals, and musculoskeletal ultrasound.
Weekly Case Conference
The fellow-on call is expected to present an interesting or challenging case seen in their outpatient clinic or on the inpatient consultation service once a week during our division meeting and discuss diagnostic or treatment dilemmas. Discussions of each case should include background reading with evidence-based literature review.
Multidisciplinary conferences and didactic lectures
Multidisciplinary clinical conferences are held throughout the academic year to provide integrative care to our complex rheumatologic patients, which enhance our rheumatology fellows’ educational experience. Fellows can present cases and lead a discussion on patient care between different specialists including nephrologists, dermatologists, pulmonologists, and radiologists.
Monthly journal club
Fellows review and present recent articles published on disease mechanisms and treatment of rheumatic diseases. This is followed by a group discussion with faculty.
Held once a month starting in the month of September. Participating rheumatology programs include GW, the NIH, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Washington Hospital Center, and Children’s National Hospital. Fellows present interesting cases with evidence-based literature review followed by a group discussion.
Fellows are expected to participate in a scholarly activity over the course of the two years. In the past, fellows have participated in projects exploring a variety of diseases.
Over the past several years, fellows have pursued original research projects, literature reviews, quality improvement projects, and published variety of case reports and book chapters. The ongoing research of various faculty members and our participation in several national registries through the VA provide multiple opportunities for scholarly projects. Fellows are expected to present posters each year at the Department of Medicine Research Day and D.C. Rheumatism Fellow’s Forum (see above), but many also present at other local and national meetings.
- Musculoskeletal ultrasound
- Pediatric rheumatology
- Endocrinology – DEXA interpretations
- Musculoskeletal radiographic imaging
- Neurology – EMG interpretations