SUO Fellowship in Urologic Oncology

The Society of Urologic Oncology fellowship at USC is a two-year program, composed of one year of research and one year of clinical experience. The research year typically involves basic science research in any one of the eight well-funded laboratories involved in urologic oncology within the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. The clinical year includes a broad experience in all aspects of urologic oncology, including hands-on surgical experience with complex open, minimally- invasive and robotic surgeries. The fellows will work at three institutions: Keck Hospital of USC, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and LAC+USC Medical Center. The same core-teaching faculty work in all three institutions, and the fellows will have the opportunity to work with all of them.

Keck Hospital of USC is the home hospital for the USC Institute of Urology and is a 440-bed tertiary care hospital. The Department of Urology has a dedicated med-surg ward and 10-bed intensive care unit. Oncology currently makes up the majority of the urology cases on our service. We typically run from four to 10 operating rooms daily with an average of 50 cases per week, including both open and minimally invasive cases. We have an average inpatient census of 40 patients. There are four to five residents on the rotation on the inpatient service, along with PA support.

The USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center is the site of our multidisciplinary outpatient clinics, including ambulatory treatment areas for cystoscopy and prostate biopsies. The urologic oncology fellow will work there with the core faculty in their outpatient clinics, seeing patients from initial consultation through postoperative and long-term care. The urology faculty sees over 150 oncology patients per week at the USC Norris clinic. The oncology and radiation therapy faculty who focus on urologic oncology see an additional 100 patients per week.

The LAC+USC Medical Center is a new 600- bed public hospital with state-of-the-art integrated operating rooms and a dedicated urology outpatient diagnostic and treatment center and standard outpatient facilities. We have three services there, each of which has a Chief resident, junior resident and intern. One service is primarily focused on oncology and most of the more complex cases are performed on that service, although basic oncology cases are managed on all three services. The fellow will have a dominant role in the evaluation and treatment of oncology patients in that facility, working closely with the residents on all three services.

To optimize his/her exposure to the most complex surgical cases, the fellow will work regularly at all three hospitals rather than being assigned to one hospital at a time (as are the residents). Under the supervision of the program director, the fellow will participate in the surgical cases with the greatest learning potential for him/her. The focus of the fellowship will be learning advanced open surgical and minimally invasive techniques. There will be three to four months of dedicated rotation on the minimally invasive services. The fellow will also be assigned to the medical oncology and radiation oncology weekly urology clinics for 2 weeks during the last half of the year to get more detailed exposure to those fields. The residents on each service will carry out much of the daily patient care duties, but the fellow will be expected to round daily with the residents and faculty at both inpatient facilities to participate in the full care of the patients.

Inquiries with a CV may be sent to

Fellowship Coordinator:
Shannon Piazza
1441 Eastlake Ave., Suite 7416
Los Angeles, CA 90089
shannon.piazza@med.usc.edu

Program Director:
Sia Daneshmand, MD
1441 Eastlake Ave., Suite 7416
Los Angeles, CA 90089

Goals and Objectives

Clinical assignments:

  1. Urologic oncology
    Initially, the fellow will work with Drs. Sia Daneshmand, Anne Schuckman and Hooman Djaladat and the other faculty at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Keck Hospital of USC and LAC+USC Medical Center focusing on surgical treatment of complex urologic oncology cases. The fellow will round daily with the faculty on the oncology service at Norris/ Keck Hospital and scrub on a regular basis with them on urologic oncology cases (usually three days per week). Learning will focus on the role of surgical management and multidisciplinary approaches to complex and advanced urologic oncology patients. The fellow will attend the weekly multidisciplinary GU Tumor Board at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and attend clinic with the faculty. The majority of surgeries on this service are complex open cases, though minimally invasive surgeries are also performed frequently. In addition, the fellow will regularly scrub on open and laparoscopic/robotic cases at LAC+USC Medical Center, usually twice weekly. The fellow will work with Drs. Schuckman, Djaladat at LAC+USC Medical Center on complex cases. As competence is achieved, the fellow will work independently and supervise the chief residents in cases and, in consultation with the faculty, assist with patient care decisions on the ward and in the clinics. The fellow will attend a weekly multidisciplinary Urologic Oncology conference at LAC+USC Medical Center (in which treatment plans for individual patients are discussed in detail), weekly urology staff rounds and a bi-weekly pathology conference. He/she will also staff one outpatient clinic per week at LAC+USC Medical Center. Throughout the clinical fellowship year, the fellow will take call- in rotation with the full-time faculty, covering all three hospital sites. Typically the fellow will be on call approximately one weekend per month.GOAL: Become proficient in open and minimally invasive surgeries and medical management of patients with all complex urologic oncology conditions.
    OBJECTIVES: By the end of the fellowship the fellow will be able to:

    1. Demonstrate and apply a detailed working knowledge of the surgical anatomy and physiology of the genitourinary tract, retroperitoneum, abdominal cavity and the lower chest.
    2. Demonstrate a detailed understanding of the natural history of bladder, kidney, prostate, testis and penile cancer
    3. Know how to evaluate and manage early and late complications of the treatment of these cancers, including sepsis, pulmonary embolism, hemorrhage, urinary leak, ileus and bowel obstruction, fistulas, and cardiac arrhythmias and ischemia.
    4. Demonstrate a working knowledge of the pathology of genitourinary cancers, and be able to recognize the basic variations of cell type, grade and invasion of each cancer.
    1. Become proficient in the evaluation and management of cancers of the bladder, prostate, kidney, testis and penis.
    2. Demonstrate and understanding of the role of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy in the treatment of localized, regional and metastatic urologic cancers, as well as other cancers such as colon cancer that may affect the urinary tract.
    3. Be able to interpret urologic radiologic studies as they result to urologic oncology, including CT scans with and without contrast, retrograde pyelography and urethrography, renal testicular and prostate ultrasound, abdominal and pelvic MRI, and PET and bone scans.
    4. Demonstrate appropriate use of medical and surgical consultants in patient management.
    1. Be able to perform independently basic open urologic oncology procedures including radical prostatectomy, radical cystectomy with ileal conduit, continent ileal neobladder, and continent cutaneous urinary diversion, partial and total penectomy, inguinal lymphadenectomy, inguinal orchiectomy, retroperitoneal lymphadenectomy, open radical and partial nephrectomy with regional lymphadenectomy with or without level 1 IVC thrombus.
    2. Be able to perform with supervision more advanced urologic procedures, including nerve sparing post-chemotherapy RPLND, salvage cystectomy and prostatectomy, complex partial nephrectomy and nephrectomy with level 2 and 3 vena cava thrombus.
    3. Demonstrate accurate endoscopic evaluation and treatment of bladder and upper tract tumors, ureteroileal anastomotic strictures and afferent valve strictures in continent urinary diversion.
    1. Demonstrate an understanding of the AUA guidelines for the management of localized prostate cancer, non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer, localized prostate cancer, and small renal masses.
    2. Locate, appraise and assimilate evidence from scientific studies related to the patient’s urologic problems. 3. Use information technology to manage information and perform effective literature searches related to his/her patients.
    1. Communicate effectively with patients and their families, including obtaining informed consent, giving bad news, and managing difficult or confrontational patients and families.
    2. Demonstrate effective communication with patients from diverse cultures, including the effective use of interpreters.
    3. Communicate openly, respectfully, and effectively with colleagues, including non-surgical colleagues, nursing and ancillary staff to optimize global care of the patients.
    4. Teach residents effectively, including clearly imparting knowledge, teaching surgical techniques and guiding independent study, including evaluating resident performance.
    5. Maintain comprehensive, timely and legible medical records.
    1. Consistently take into consideration the cost of health care and deliver cost-effective health care whenever possible
    2. Demonstrate an understanding of the social and economic factors affecting health care of his/her patients.
    3. Advocate for quality patient care and assist patients in dealing with system complexities, especially as it relates to uninsured and underprivileged patients 4. Assist in the maintenance of continuity of care for patients after discharge from the hospital.
  2. Medical oncology and radiation oncology
    During the second half of the clinical year, the fellow will be assigned to attend GU clinics for both medical oncology and radiation oncology working with the medical oncologist and radiation oncologist at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and LAC+USC Medical Center in the ambulatory setting. The fellow will be supervised by the medical oncology and radiation therapy faculty and will work side-by-side with their respective residents and fellows. During this time, the fellow will maintain some of his/her activities on the urology service.GOAL: To become familiar with the application of medical oncologic and radiation oncologic principles to the treatment of urologic oncology conditions
    OBJECTIVES: By the end of this experience the fellow will be able to:

    1. Demonstrate an understanding of the multidisciplinary approach to the common urologic cancer management, including prostate cancer, bladder cancer, renal cancer and testis cancer.
    2. Demonstrate knowledge of the most common medical therapies applied to urologic cancers, including the various types of chemotherapies, biologic therapies and hormone therapies.
    3. Know the expected response rates of each therapy in each disease in the first line and salvage settings.
    4. Learn the common complications of each type of therapy and the prevention and management of them.
    5. Demonstrate an understanding of the basic principals of radiation therapy, including the physics of dose calculation.
    6. Know the pros and cons of external beam (including IMRT), brachytherapy, and combined treatments in the primary treatment of prostate cancer.
    7. Demonstrate and understanding of the role of external beam radiation therapy for bladder cancer.
    8. Describe the effect of concomitant systemic chemotherapy on radiation therapy effectiveness and side effects, and understand the differences between different chemotherapies.
    1. Perform efficient and accurate history and physical examinations
    2. Independently formulate diagnostic and treatment plans for patients on the service.
    3. Demonstrate an ability to manage common complications of systemic chemotherapy in the outpatient setting.
    1. Demonstrate appropriate work habits, including timeliness, efficiency, integrity, and teamwork.
    2. Demonstrate respect, compassion for the patient with a commitment to ethical principles pertaining to the provision or with holding of clinical care.
    3. Show commitment to carry out all professional responsibilities regarding patient care, including accessibility and accountability, and appropriate consultation with attendings and senior residents on the service.
    4. Act appropriately and professionally in all clinical settings, maintaining patient confidentiality and showing respect for both patients and the entire healthcare team.
    1. Locate, appraise and assimilate evidence from scientific studies related to his/her patient’s urologic problems.
    2. Use information technology to manage information and perform effective literature searches related to his/her patients.
    1. Communicate effectively with patients and their families, especially with highly educated and informed patients.
    2. Develop an understanding of cultural differences in the perception and understanding of cancer and cancer care, and learn to communicate effectively with patients from diverse cultures.
    3. Communicate openly, respectfully, and effectively with colleagues, including non-surgical colleagues, nursing and ancillary staff to optimize global care of the patients.
    4. Maintain comprehensive, timely and legible medical records.
    1. Be aware of the cost of individual aspects of care and deliver cost-effective health care whenever possible
    2. Advocate for quality patient care and assist patients in dealing with system complexities.
    3. Assist in the maintenance of continuity of care for patients after discharge from the hospital.
  3. Minimally invasive urology oncology
    In this rotation, the fellow will be assigned to work directly with the faculty specializing in minimally invasive surgery. This includes Drs. Inderbir Gill, Mihir Desai, Monish Aron, Mike Nguyen, Andrew Hung, Hooman Djaladat, Andre Abreu, and Andre Berger. The focus of this rotation will be on minimally invasive techniques as applied to oncology cases, including both laparoscopy and robotics. The fellow will also gain experience in laparoscopic and robotic surgery at LAC+USC Medical Center. Clinics will primarily focus on the application of minimally invasive and focal therapies for kidney and prostate cancer.GOAL: Become proficient at using minimally invasive laparoscopic and robotic techniques in the surgical approach to common urologic oncology conditions
    OBJECTIVES: By the end of this rotation the resident will be able to:

    1. Learn the appropriate role of minimally invasive surgical approaches to renal masses, upper tract and bladder urothelial cancers, and prostate cancer.
    2. Learn the risks and complications of minimally invasive surgeries compared to open surgical approaches for the same conditions.
    1. Perform accurate and efficient history and physical examinations of patients on the service.
    2. Become adept in the pre- and post-operative management of patients undergoing minimally invasive surgical treatments, including the evaluation and management of such complications as bleeding, infection, and catheter-related problems.
    3. Know how to evaluate and manage intraoperative complications of these procedures, including the appropriate role for conversion to open surgery.
    4. Use information technology and evidence-based medicine to support patient care decision.
    1. Master laparoscopic and robotic radical nephrectomy and partial nephrectomy, including retroperitoneal and transperitoneal approaches.
    2. Become adept at robotic radical prostatectomy.
    3. Begin learning the techniques for laparoscopic and robotic partial nephrectomy and robotic radical cystectomy with extended pelvic node dissection and urinary diversion.
    4. Maintain comprehensive, timely and legible medical records.
    1. Demonstrate appropriate work habits, including timeliness, efficiency, integrity, and teamwork.
    2. Demonstrate respect, compassion for the patient with a commitment to ethical principles pertaining to the provision or with holding of clinical care.
    3. Show commitment to carry out all professional responsibilities regarding patient care, including accessibility and accountability, and appropriate consultation with attendings and fellows on the service.
    4. Act appropriately and professionally in all clinical settings, maintaining patient confidentiality and showing respect for both patients and the entire healthcare team.
    1. Locate, appraise and assimilate evidence from scientific studies related to the patient’s urologic problems.
    2. Use information technology to manage information and perform effective literature searches related to the patients’ problems.
    3. Interpersonal and Communication Skills
    4. Learn to communicate effectively with patients and their families, especially with highly educated and informed patients.
    5. Develop an understanding of cultural differences in the perception and understanding of urologic care, and learn to communicate effectively with patients from diverse cultures.
    6. Communicate openly, respectfully, and effectively with colleagues, including non-surgical colleagues, nursing and ancillary staff to optimize care of the patients.
    1. Demonstrate an awareness of the cost of individual aspects of care and deliver cost-effective health care whenever possible
    2. Advocate for quality patient care and assist patients in dealing with system complexities.
    3. Understand the different systems of health insurance, including HMOs, PPOs and Medicare and MediCal, and know the impact of the type of system on the patient and healthcare provider.
    4. Assist in the maintenance of continuity of care for patients after discharge from the hospital.

Statistical Information

HOSPITAL STATISTICS Keck/Norris Hospital LAC+USC Med Ctr Total
Number of Urologic | Yearly 1000-1100 400 1400-1500

 

HOSPITAL STATISTICS Keck/Norris Hospital LAC+USC Med Ctr Total
Oncology Surgical Cases 800-900 250-300 1050-1200
Major 200-300 150-200 350-500
Number of Urologic Oncology Out-Patient Visits Yearly 7300 2500 9800

* Excludes cystoscopic and prostate biopsy cases, includes TURBT and ureteroscopy, orchiectomy, etc.

Faculty

  1. Dr. Monish Aron. Dr. Aron will work closely with Dr. Gill and Dr. Desai supervising the training of the fellow in minimally invasive techniques in urologic oncology, including endoscopic management of upper tract malignancies and robotic surgery. He will work directly with the fellow in the OR and inpatient and outpatient settings primarily at Keck Hospital of USC Hospital, primarily during their 5 month rotation in minimally invasive techniques.
  2. Dr. Leslie Ballas: Dr. Ballas is in the department of Radiation Oncology and focuses on the radiation treatment of patients with urologic oncology. She and her colleagues will work directly with the fellows on a weekly basis through the multidisciplinary Urologic Oncology Conference at LAC+USC Medical Center.
  3. Dr. Andre Berger: Dr. Berger is fellowship-trained in advanced robotic and laparoscopic urological surgery, with specific expertise in prostate cancer, kidney cancer and bladder cancer surgeries. Fellows working with Dr. Berger will be able to gain experience in robotic athermal nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer, robotic and laparoscopic surgery for kidney tumors, scar-less “belly-button” single-port urological surgery, and other surgeries for various urological conditions.
  4. Dr. Stuart Boyd: Dr. Boyd’s practice encompasses prosthetics and lower urinary tract reconstruction. As such he will work with the fellows teaching the evaluation and management of post-prostatectomy and post-cystectomy incontinence and erectile dysfunction, and the surgical techniques of implantation of the artificial urinary sphincter and inflatable penile prosthesis. In addition he manages complex urethral stricture disease, and the fellows will be involved in those cases as well.
  5. Dr. Sia Daneshmand: Dr. Daneshmand is program director and is responsible for curriculum development and implementation. He is a fellowship-trained urologic oncologist whose practice is focused on localized and advanced testis, advanced renal and bladder cancer. He trained at USC (residency and fellowship) and subsequently spent 6 years at OHSU in Oregon, where he became a recognized expert in complex open urologic oncology cases. At the Keck Hospital of USC and USC Norris Cancer Hospital, Dr. Daneshmand will directly supervise the fellow on the service in the OR and inpatient and outpatient settings. He will ensure that the fellows receive timely and substantive feedback and evaluation from the entire faculty involved in the program, and meet at least quarterly with each fellow to discuss his/her progress. At the end of the fellowship period he will write a final summative evaluation of the fellow’s competence. Dr. Daneshmand will work with the fellows on a regular basis and supervise training in open surgical techniques for advanced and complex conditions not amenable to minimally invasive techniques. He will also be responsible for directing clinical research projects taken on by the fellows.
  6. Dr. Mihir Desai: Dr. Desai will work closely with Dr. Gill supervising the training of the fellow in minimally invasive techniques in urologic oncology, including endoscopic management of upper tract malignancies and robotic surgery. He will work directly with the fellow in the OR and inpatient and outpatient settings primarily at Keck Hospital of USC Hospital, primarily during their 5-month rotation focused on minimally invasive techniques.
  7. Dr. Hooman Djaladat: Dr. Djaladat is a urologic oncologist with extreme passion in research, clinical work, and teaching, having received two teaching awards in 2013 and 2017. He works closely with residents and fellows in LAC-USC doing complex open, laparoscopic and robotic surgeries. Given his background training in endo-urology and laparoscopy, SUO-urologic oncology and minimally-invasive surgery, he supervises the training of residents and fellows at Keck on all of these complex operations as well.
  8. Dr. Inderbir Gill: Dr. Gill is Chairman of the USC Institute of Urology and is a world-recognized expert in laparoscopic oncology surgery. He will supervise the training of the fellows in minimally invasive techniques in urologic oncology, especially laparoscopic and robotic techniques. He will work directly with the fellow in the OR and inpatient and outpatient settings primarily at Keck Hospital of USC. He is also responsible for appointment and evaluation of the program director.
  9. Dr. Amir Goldkorn: Dr. Goldkorn is a medical oncologist with an active basic science laboratory. He is involved in patient care primarily at LAC+USC Medical Center, and is an active participant in the multidisciplinary patient care conference at that hospital.
  10. Dr. Andrew Hung Dr. Hung is a fellowship-trained robotic surgeon, and Director of USC Urology’s Center for Robotic Simulation and Education. As a multi-year recipient of the faculty teaching award, he trains both residents and fellows on complex laparoscopic and robotic cases.
  11. Dr. Mike Nguyen Dr. Nguyen is part of the minimally invasive urology team and performs surgery at Keck and LAC+USC. He is available to work with fellows in the OR setting at both locations.
  12. Dr. David Quinn: Dr. Quinn is the chief of the urologic medical oncology group at USC and will work directly with the fellows on a weekly basis as part of the routine multidisciplinary evaluation and treatment of urologic oncology patients at both institutions. In addition, he will supervise the medical oncology experience for the fellows
  13. Dr. Anne Schuckman: Dr. Schuckman is a fellowship-trained urologic oncologist who also completed her training at USC. She serves as the director of the fellowship at the LAC+USC Medical Center, directly supervising the fellow in the clinics and in the OR. Her focus will be on major open surgical procedures including management of large and complex renal masses, invasive bladder cancer, and advanced testis cancer. She will also supervise straightforward laparoscopic procedures.
  14. Dr. Rene Sotelo: Dr. Sotelo is a trained robotic ane laparoscopic surgeron to treat both urologic cancers and benign conditions. He joined the USC Institute of Urology in 2015, and was recently appointed to the position of Medical Director of the International Medicine Department of USC, to lead initiatives both regionally and internationally. He will work close to the fellows in the OR and inpatient at Keck and Verdugo Hills Hospital.

The Fellowship Experience at USC

Implementation of progressive and graded patient care responsibility

Initially the faculty will directly supervise all oncology cases, with the fellow taking on increasing independence as competency is established. By the end of the training is expected that the fellow will be able to independently complete basic urologic oncology cases, including radical cystectomy with orthotopic, continent cutaneous or ileal conduit diversion, open radical and partial nephrectomy, laparoscopic radical and partial nephrectomy, open and robotic radical prostatectomy and open inguinal and retroperitoneal lymphadenectomy. Competency to independently perform more complex procedures such as difficult laparoscopic or robotic partial nephrectomy, post-chemotherapy RPLND, salvage cystectomy and nephrectomy with IVC thrombus is expected to be achieved by most fellows by the end of the clinical year, but will depend on the individual fellow’s prior experience and surgical skills.

 

Familiarity with all state‑of‑the‑art imaging modalities

The USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Keck Hospital of USC and LAC+USC all have state-of-the art imaging available, including 64-slice spiral CT scans with 3D reconstruction capability, MRIs including 3T MRI with endorectal coil at Keck Hospital, PET scans, and interventional techniques. The fellow will be expected to become competent in interpreting studies using all of these techniques on his/her patients as indicated.

 

Knowledge and the ability to apply the critical principles of medical oncology, radiation oncology, and uropathology

The fellow will participate actively in our multidisciplinary Grand Rounds, which include faculty from urology, medical oncology, radiation therapy, radiology and pathology as well as basic science faculty. A multidisciplinary patient care conference takes place weekly at LAC+USC Medical Center, again with faculty from oncology and radiation therapy. Finally, a bi-weekly pathology conference at LAC+USC Medical Center focuses primarily on oncology cases. In addition, the fellows will have a formal 1-month rotation in both medical oncology and radiation therapy.

 

Ability to perform complex tumor resections with a clear understanding of the benefits and the technical limitations of surgical procedures

The USC Department of Urology has a long been recognized as a center of excellence for open surgical treatment of complex urologic oncology cases. Fellows trained by Dr. Donald Skinner over the past 20 years have been recognized as some of the most outstanding open surgeons in the field. This tradition has continued at USC with faculty trained by Donald Skinner and equally committed to his surgical techniques. We now have the addition of one of the world’s most accomplished laparascopic and robotic surgeons as our Chairman. We expect to be able to train fellows in both open and minimally invasive techniques, and will focus on the most appropriate application of each technique to optimize outcomes for the patients.

 

Extensive knowledge of and technical experience in urinary tract diversion and reconstruction

The USC Institute of Urology is world-renown as a center for continent diversion and lower urinary tract reconstruction. Approximately 60 % of over 200 patients undergoing radical cystectomy at our 3 hospitals annually opt for continent urinary diversion, so the fellow will gain extensive experience in these surgical techniques, as well as in the management of their complications.

Knowledge of the biologic potential of urologic malignancies

The Institute of Urology maintains three mature databases of patients treated with radical cystectomy, radical prostatectomy, and radical and partial nephrectomy. Charts are abstracted by trained full-time professionals who are responsible for patient follow-up data as well. All three of these databases include patients treated over a 20+ year time period, and include detailed clinical and pathologic information. The fellows have ample opportunity to study outcomes using these databases, and can gain a clear knowledge of expected outcomes with each of these diseases. The bladder and prostate databases are also tied to a tissue repository, which will allow the fellows to actively investigate new pathologic variables in these patient groups.

 

Comprehension of and facility with scientific methodology, study design, biostatistics, clinical trials, and data analysis

The fellows will be expected to actively participate in clinical trials underway at USC, and to be involved in developing new study ideas. This will include study design, management of regulatory issues (IRB), as well as screening patients for study participation. Fellows will be required to take the USC on-line course in clinical trial management. They will meet regularly with the clinical trials group, including the biostatisticians under Dr. Susan Groshen. In addition, we have three large clinical databases available for clinical studies, and the fellows will be involved in data analysis of those for specific study questions.

 

Ability to manage academic or tertiary referral practice, participate in continuing medical education

Fellows will be expected to present topics regularly at our Grand Rounds and submit and present podium and poster presentations at regional and national meetings. They will have extensive experience interacting with private patients as both outpatient and inpatients at Norris and Keck Hospital, and they will be primarily responsible for communication with referring physicians for patients at LAC+USC Medical Center.

 

Skills for self-education and collaboration in translational research

The fellows will be interacting regularly with the basic scientists, through their own laboratory research year and throughout the clinical year as well. They will be expected to do regular reviews of the literature regarding the patients they are involved with, and will present those at our Grand Rounds and patient care conferences. The medical oncologists in the Institute of Urology are actively involved in translational research, and the fellows will work regularly with them on patient care issues as well as clinical research.

Conferences

The fellow will participate in all of the following conferences on a regular basis:

Multidisciplinary GU Tumor Board (Mondays 5:30-7 PM, Norris). This is a multidisciplinary case conference attended by the urologic oncologists and minimally invasive urologists, radiation therapists and GU medical oncologists. We discuss complex cases for management decisions, including review of radiologic studies as well as patholgogy.

  1. Journal Club & Grand Rounds (Fridays 6:30-7:30 AM): Journal clubs are scheduled approximately monthly during the resident teaching conference timeslot. The format of journal club varies from discussion of selected papers from the current urology journals to discussion of seminal papers on a particular topic. Faculty participating vary depending on the topic chosen.
  2. Urologic oncology Core Curriculum: The fellows will meet with one or more faculty of the departments of urology, medical oncology and radiation therapy on a monthly basis to discuss specific topics in urologic oncology.
  3. Pathology Review (alternate Fridays, 2 PM, LAC): All residents on the LAC+USC Medical Center rotations attend this conference held at the multiple-head microscopes in the pathology department. Dr. Yanling Ma (pathology) reviews pathology from all urologic surgical cases from the preceding 2 weeks.
  4. Urology Research Meeting (quarterly Friday AM): ): All research support staff, residents, fellows, and faculty from urology, medical oncology, and basic science labs are invited to attend to discuss ongoing projects, ideas for new projects, funding, logistics, issues surrounding databases, as well as IRB related matters.

Teaching responsibilities

The oncology fellows will have significant responsibility for bedside teaching of residents, and to a lesser degree the students on the services. Effective teaching skills are highly valued within our department, and the fellow’s teaching abilities in the OR and on the wards will be evaluated by the residents on an annual basis, with feedback to the fellows. However, in general the fellows will not be assigned formal lecture-type teaching responsibilities.

Evaluation

All of the faculty who have worked with each fellow will evaluate them at the end of each rotation using a competency-based evaluation form. Evaluations will be completed using the MyEvaluations program for on-line evaluations. The research faculty in whose lab the fellow works will also be asked to evaluate his/her performance in the lab on a semiannual basis.

The program director will meet with the fellow twice yearly to review the evaluations and discuss the fellow’s progress in the fellowship.

The Program Director will complete a final written summative evaluation of the fellow at his/her successful completion of the fellowship and this will become part of their permanent employment file.

The faculty will address the core curriculum on an annual basis as part of a faculty retreat. They will evaluate the entire curriculum with special attention to formal and informal feedback from the fellows regarding their experience.

The faculty will be evaluated by the fellows on an annual basis, combined with the resident evaluations. These will be performed through the MyEvaluations system which maintains confidentiality.