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Frequently Asked Questions

Overview

  • How many positions are available each year?
    Five or six general gastroenterology fellowship positions are available each year. There are a total of 16 general GI fellows and one advanced endoscopy fellow currently at IU School of Medicine. 
  • At which hospitals do the fellows rotate and how much time do fellows spend at each hospital? 
    There are five hospitals at which GI fellows rotate: Indiana University Health University hospital (UH), Eskenazi hospital, Roudebush Veterans Affair Medical Center (VAMC), IU Health North hospital, and IU Health Methodist hospital. UH is a typical large university hospital with complex cases, with three services (GI consults, ERCP consults, and inpatient liver primary service). Eskenazi hospital provides more community-based care experience, and thus a mix of routine and complex patients. At Methodist, we only have a liver consult service. IU Health North provides a more private practice-like consult experience. Except for the UH liver service, all the services are consults only (no primary patients). First year fellows spend an average of three months at the various UH rotations, three months at the VAMC, three months at Eskenazi hospital, one month at Methodist and one month at IU Health North.
  • When and where are the outpatient clinics for fellows? Do fellows rotate in specialty clinics?
    Fellows are assigned to continuity clinics either at the VAMC or at Eskenazi. All fellows have one half day per week of continuity clinic throughout fellowship.

    One month per year, fellows are assigned an outpatient block where they can rotate in subspecialty continuity clinics in inflammatory bowel disease, motility, pancreaticobiliary, and hepatology. 

    In the third year of training, fellows who are preparing for an academic career in a specific subspecialty can switch part of their weekly continuity clinic to the subspecialty clinic. 
  • What is the call schedule? Is call in-house or from home?
    GI Fellows take call from home; there is no in-house call. Calls are one week at a time. First year fellows typically cover 5-6 weeks/year, while second and third years cover 2-3 weeks/year. Of note, for the first two weeks of calls that a first year fellow takes, the fellow is paired with a senior fellow who will help out.  

Endoscopy

  • How much endoscopy time do fellows get and how many procedures do fellows perform during fellowship?
    Fellows perform endoscopies during specific endoscopy blocks and while on call. Generally, first year fellows will have around three months of dedicated endoscopy time, while second and third years will have five to six months of endoscopy each year. On average, by the end of their third year, fellows would have performed more than 1,000 endoscopic procedures, significantly exceeding the recommended benchmarks, as well as the national average.
  • Is there training in ERCP or EUS?
    General GI fellows get an average of three months of exposure to managing pancreaticobiliary diseases with the ERCP group at IU. During their second and third years of fellowship, they also get some exposure to using the side-viewer scope and can participate in a few procedures each day. However, general GI fellows do not get full training in ERCP or EUS, which requires enrolling in a fourth year of fellowship as advanced endoscopy fellow. 

Education and Research

  • What is the fellows’ conference schedule?

    There are multiple conferences held throughout the week. All fellows are expected to attend.

    Tuesday 
    4-5 pm: Attending lecture
    5-6 pm: Grand rounds or Journal Club
    Wednesday
    7-8 am: Core curriculum lecture
    Friday
    7-8 am: Clinical case conference

  • How is the research training supported?
    With the guidance and help of the fellowship research committee, first year fellows will identify a research mentor and a main research project by the middle of their first year. During the second half of first year of fellowship, fellows will be given one half day per week of protected research time. In June, the first year fellows will present their research proposals and receive feedback from the division. Second year fellows get four months of research to work on their projects. Third year fellows get one month of research to wrap up their projects. Additional research time can also be allocated to fellows with interest in research track academic careers.   
  • How and when do fellows choose a mentor?
    Fellows meet with the fellowship research committee chair at the beginning of their first year to identify their areas of interest and they are suggested several potential research mentors accordingly to choose from.
     
    In addition, at the end of the first quarter of the first year, the program director assigns each fellow a personal mentor to help with personal and career advice throughout fellowship. 
  • Can fellows obtain a Masters/PhD during their training?
    Fellows may pursue Masters/PhD degrees during their training and this can be incorporated into their schedule.
  • Can fellows attend national conferences?
    Fellows are encouraged to submit abstracts and attend national conferences, such as ACG annual meeting, DDW and AASLD annual meeting. Each fellow receive an education fund to cover expenses related to educational endeavors, including travel and attendance at national meetings. 

Beyond Fellowship

  • Where do fellows go when they finish fellowship? 

    IU School of Medicine has a strong reputation of training excellent gastroenterologists, which allows graduates to end up at their location of choice throughout the country, in various academic and non-academic positions. Some fellows will go on to pursue an additional year of training in a subspecialty within GI. The IU School of Medicine GI fellowship can tailor each fellow’s experience to allow them to pursue their career goals. About 50% of our graduates are thriving at academic institutions, and about 50% are excelling in private practices.

Living in Indianapolis and Other Work/Life FAQs 

  • Where do the fellows live? 

    Most fellows live within 10-25 minutes from the hospitals. Several fellows live in the downtown area (near Massachusetts Avenue or by the canal) and the commute is typically less than 10 minutes. There are some fellows who have either bought or rented houses in the nearby suburbs, but even during rush hour the commute is unlikely to be greater than 30 minutes.

  • When do fellows get vacation?

    Fellows receive four weeks of vacation per year and generally split these into one-week vacations at a time. Fellows request their vacation time prior to the start of each academic year.

  • Are there any holidays?
    IU School of Medicine and IU Health recognize several holidays including Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day and Independence Day. The VAMC follows all federal holidays. Endoscopy units and clinics are closed on holidays. Typically, the on-call fellow covers holidays, in addition to two or three fellows who will help with rounding in the morning on these days. During the winter holidays, each fellow will get an extra five or six days off around Christmas or around New Year’s Day, which is in addition to the four weeks of vacation. 
  • Can fellows moonlight?
    Moonlighting is not permitted for first year fellows. Second and third year fellows can moonlight with the approval of the program director. Per ACGME rules, moonlighting must count towards the 80-hour workweek.