The Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program trains leaders in this discipline. The majority of trainees are pediatricians who become clinician educators or clinician scientists who pursue academic careers in clinical, epidemiological, translational or laboratory-based research. There are also post-doctoral research programs for PhDs who do not actively participate in the clinical service.
The fellowship is a three-year program. Both the hematology and oncology programs have NIH T32 and K12 training grants that may enable the fellow to continue at a junior faculty level for one or two additional years. Participation in these grants allows the fellow to apply for NIH loan forgiveness.
Unique information about the program
This is a large and renowned program that has a substantial patient population as well as a strong laboratory and clinical research program. It has an outstanding record for training subspecialists.
The first year consists of clinical rotations in hematology, oncology, bone marrow transplantation, neuro-oncology and clinical laboratories. The fellow participates in outpatient clinics in hematology and oncology one day or two half days a week. The fellow acquires a cohort of patients for whom he or she is the primary physician throughout the training program. Toward the end of the first year, the fellow chooses research training in either clinical research or laboratory-based research. Those who wish to pursue a clinical research career are encouraged to obtain formal training in epidemiology, biostatistics, bioethics or clinical pharmacology and outcomes. Usually this training is accomplished through a Master of Science program at The University of Pennsylvania (Penn)'s Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB) or through programs in the different schools at Penn. The fellow who wishes to pursue laboratory research selects a mentor and together they submit a research proposal to the Fellowship Committee. In the second year, the fellow spends one day a week in outpatient continuity clinic and laboratory researchers have an option to reduce this to every other week in year three.
More than 90 percent of our fellows go into academic medicine. In recent years, fellows have taken positions at the Babies Hospital (Columbia University), Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center (University of Washington), University of California at San Diego and Los Angeles, Texas Children's Hospital at Baylor, Northwestern University, Duke University, The Hughes Institute, Vanderbilt University, Indiana University and The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. All graduates have taken and passed the Hematology/Oncology Board examinations. Fellows have been the recipients of the greatest number of ASPH/O young investigator awards, ASCO training awards and in the past two years, fellows have won the David Nathan Pediatric Academic Society Award for research in pediatric hematology/oncology.
The division includes inpatient and outpatient services, the Apheresis program, the Transfusion Medicine program and clinical research programs in hemophilia, sickle cell disease, thalassemia and bone marrow failure. Outpatient diagnosis, management and consultation are provided at the Hospital's Main Campus, the Specialty Care Center in Voorhees, N.J. and the Hematology/Oncology Lehigh Valley Practice in Western Pennsylvania.
The clinical program in Oncology is one of the largest in the United States. There are approximately 350 to 400 new patients each year. The average daily inpatient census is 30 and the outpatient clinic sees 60 to 80 patients daily. There are specialized clinical research programs and allied translational laboratory programs in leukemia, neuroblastoma, sarcoma, neuro-oncology, bone marrow transplant, survivorship and late effects. There is a combined program with Critical Care Medicine in palliative care. The program contributes the largest numbers of patients to therapeutic and non-therapeutic studies of the Children's Oncology Group and is the recipient of the greatest support from that group. It is also a program in Penn's Comprehensive Cancer Center and has been rated as outstanding in the most recent NIH competitive renewal.