Neonatal-Perinatal Fellowship Training Program

Through a curriculum that emphasizes individual goals, our fellowship training program prepares post-residency fellows for a successful career in academic neonatal-perinatal medicine. Our clinical curriculum and training facilities provides the trainee with a comprehensive clinical experience in the three Harvard Medical Area neonatal intensive care units (NICU): Children's Hospital Boston, Brigham and Women's, and Beth Israel Deaconess hospitals. Research training begins during fellowship and continues during junior faculty years. Customized research training under the aegis of one of the program faculty sections provides the trainee an opportunity to develop research expertise in developmental biology, neonatal epidemiology and health policy and/or clinical investigation.

Upon successful completion of the three years of fellowship training, fellows are eligible for examination by the Neonatal-Perinatal SubBoard of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Fellows are expected to continue their research training as a junior faculty member. Our philosophy is that an extended commitment to training is necessary for a successful career as an independent investigator.


Following an orientation period, the first year of fellowship focuses on clinical experience and mentor selection. During this year the fellows rotate through the various NICUs, conduct rounds, and manage the care of newborns. Call is every fourth night while on service. Faculty and senior fellow advisors meet frequently with fellows and provide feedback and guidance.

While at the Brigham and Women's and Children's Hospital Boston, fellows also supervise and teach residents and interns.

Rotations at Children's Hospital Boston provide experience in transport and in the co-management of surgical patients, whereas Beth Israel Deaconess and Brigham and Women's hospitals provide additional experience in perinatal management and delivery room care. The second and third years emphasize a program in research training with an established mentor, and preparation of an individual fellowship training grant. In addition, electives are offered in cardiology, perinatology, and ECMO during the second and third years.

Numerous teaching conferences, journal clubs, and guest lectures are available. Fellows conduct many of the teaching conferences with faculty supervision. Fellows are encouraged to present their research and attend sponsored national conferences. A city-wide annual Newborn Medicine Research Symposium sponsored by the program provides the fellow in training with opportunities to meet colleagues at similar stages of training in other institutions, and to share their research.

Following successful completion of the three-year fellowship, trainees are encouraged to continue their research training with their established mentors for a period of two years as an attending neonatologist with a Harvard Medical School appointment. This phase of research maturation facilitates a successful transition to the status of independent investigator. This training curriculum reflects the philosophy that future success as an academic neonatologist requires an excellent clinical foundation and a progressive, individualized research training experience.

Clinical Training

Clinical training encompasses many areas, including delivery room resuscitation and stabilization, acute intensive care management, convalescent care, neonatal transport, infant follow-up, and neonatal consultation.

During the clinical training within the affiliated NICUs, fellows develop a fund of knowledge and acquire technical skills. Each hospital NICU experience contributes a distinctive component to the important clinical phase of fellowship training. The ethical dilemmas of neonatal intensive care form an integral part of the clinical experience, and fellows learn to assist families through the bereavement process.

As consultants, fellows provide input on the management of neonatal surgical patients, antepartum obstetrical patients, and other hospitalized non-intensive care neonates. Fellows also conduct telephone consultations with pediatricians in the community and at referring hospitals. In addition to critical care activities, fellows become familiar with the physical and developmental issues of high-risk infants by participating in the Infant Follow-Up Program. Excellent clinical care depends on a broad knowledge base of the underlying basic sciences and relevant clinical literature. Core lectures that address clinical and basic science topics are offered weekly, and regular program clinical conferences contribute to a broad based fund of knowledge in contemporary newborn medicine.