Neonatal Perinatal Medicine

Overview

The neonatologist in the future needs to have a strong clinical foundation to continue learning and to practice medicine during the exciting changes that will occur during the 21st century. Our faculty and fellows practice at two different NICUs (level III/IV). Care is provided for all types of patients ranging from normal deliveries to critically ill newborns who are transferred to our hospital requiring cardiac surgery or ECMO. We believe that using Evidence-based medicine and understanding research techniques and strategies will provide tools for the candidate to understand the medical literature and to develop approaches to answer new questions to advance the care of newborns.

The fellowship training program in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine is a three-year program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). There is full salary support for all three years. Dr. Vineet Bhandari is Director of the Division of Neonatology and Dr. Alan Zubrow is the training Program Director. Dr. Anja Mowes is the Associate Program Director. Our program accepts four first year fellows each year.

Mission

The Fellowship Program's mission is to prepare trainees for a career in academic Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine. We accomplish this goal by offering exposure to a large, diverse population of patients along with in depth training in research design, techniques, and hypothesis generated experiments. If interested, fellows are guided through the steps in preparing a grant.

Education

Our training program consists of 12-15 months of clinical service (including 1 month of Maternal Fetal Medicine, 1 month of Cardiology/Cardiothoracic Surgery), 15- 19 months for research, and time in continuity clinic. Each year, the fellow has 4 weeks for vacation.

Clinical Opportunities

We have a high risk inborn service at Hahnemann University Hospital (level III) that provides challenges in caring for all types of sick infants. Care starts with involvement in prenatal case conferences about difficult patients and perinatal consults. The team is available 24 hours a day for call to the delivery room. Care is provided in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit with up to date equipment and an excellent nursing staff.
Our NICU at St. Christopher's Hospital (level IV) is a regional resource caring for babies referred for specialized treatment from hospitals throughout the tri-state region. All types of patients are referred  including those who require management of complex medical problems, surgical intervention, cardiovascular surgery, neurosurgery, and ECMO.

Educational Opportunities

There is a strong commitment to fellow education. There are daily NICU attending teaching conferences and rounds with staff radiologists. One afternoon a week, there is dedicated time for fellow education that covers topics in clinical medicine, perinatal physiology, and research. Monthly, there are two conferences with our obstetrical colleagues. The educational experience is augmented by participation in  simulations using  high-fidelity mannequins that apply what is taught at other times through a structured curriculum. Similarly, material is reviewed using a Board Course format.
In addition, St. Christopher's Hospital offers a comprehensive Core Curriculum for education of the fellows. At these meetings, the Neonatal-Perinatal fellows are able to interact with their peers/fellows from all of the other disciplines. The faculty fully supports each fellow to meet all of the American Board of Pediatrics requirements for Scholarly Activity. By having joint educational meetings with fellows from other programs in Philadelphia, the fellow's experience is enriched. Fellows are encouraged to attend meetings of the Philadelphia Perinatal Society and present their research in the annual Boggs Award competition.

Research Opportunities

Ample time spread over three years is available to formulate a research project, collect data, write abstracts for national and international meetings and prepare manuscripts for publication in competitive scientific journals.

Research

Research is important for the future to improve care of newborns and understand disease processes that affect babies. Members of our division are currently investigating:

Brain injury induced by:

  • Hypoxia
  • Hyperoxia
  • Drugs
  • Systemic inflammation

Understanding the pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia:

  • Utilizing in vitro and in vivo hyperoxia-induced lung injury models
  • Utilizing genetic gain-of-function (transgenic mice) and loss-of-function (null mutant mice; siRNA) models
  • Utilizing mesenchymal stem cells, conditioned media and exosomes
  • Utilizing in vitro and in vivo sepsis-induced lung injury models 

Collaborative clinical projects to enhance clinical care:

  • Impact of preterm formula on bone mineralization

Mechanisms of fetal programming of adult-onset diseases by investigating:

  • Impact of maternal nutrition on modulating hypothalamic gene expression in offspring
  • Interaction of maternal stress and diet on development of metabolic dysfunction in offspring
  • Neonatal immune response to infection
  • Mechanisms that the neonate uses to fight influenza virus

Simulation as an Educational Tool:

  • Quantitatively Measure Critical Thinking Skills of Neonatology Fellows

This research is supported in part by grants funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), March of Dimes, The Hartwell Foundation, St. Christopher's Foundation for Children, and the Newborn Resuscitation Program of the American Academy of Pediatrics and industry-sponsored.

Quality Improvement in the NICU – Fellow led projects

  • 2016 Timely Administration of antibiotics in High risk admission
  • 2016 Accuracy of Hands-off information
  • 2015 Improvement of Discharge summaries
  • 2015 Improvement of Discharge summaries
  • 2015 Oxygen targets
  • 2015 Improvement of MRI slots for NICU patients
  • 2014 Improve placement of umbilical catheters
  • 2014 Prevention of unplanned extubation events in Neonates
  • 2014 Consult Documentation
  • 2013 Improving discharge communication between well baby nursery physician and community 
  • primary care providers
  • 2013 Improving adherence to AAP recommendations for the prevention of perinatal GBS
  • 2012 Improving physician documentation in the medical record of central line placement and removal
  • 2012 Vancomycin use in Neonatal patients
  • 2012 Newborn Resuscitation Program Compliance
  • 2011 Medication Reconciliation 'NPSG8'

Faculty (Hospital where received Fellowship Training)

  • Vineet Bhandari, MD, Section Chief, Professor
    Fellowship Training: University of Connecticut Health Center, University of Connecticut
  • Anja Mowes, MD, Program Director, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Thomas Jefferson University Medical Center/Christiana Care Medical Center/A.I., duPont Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University
  • Alan Zubrow, MD, Associate Program Director, DIO, Professor
    Fellowship Training: Babies Hospital/Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York Presbyterian Medical Center, Columbia University
  • Endla K. Anday, MD, Medical Director (HUH), Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Jane McGowan, MD, Medical Director (SCHC), Professor
    Fellowship Training: University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, University of Colorado
  • Juan Ballesteros, MD, Associate Professor 
    Fellowship training: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, MCP-Hahnemann University
  • Alison Carey, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship training: Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York Presbyterian Medical Center, Columbia University
  • Harbhajan Chawla, MD, Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Maria Delivoria-Papadopoulos, MD, Professor
    Fellowship Training: Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto
  • Rachel Fleishman, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Seattle Children’s Hospital, University of Washington 
  • Keri Fugarolas, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Margaret A Gilfillan, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Penn State Children’s Hospital, Pennsylvania State University
  • Jan Goplerud, MD, Associate Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Folasade Kehinde, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: University of Connecticut Health Center, University of Connecticut
  • Kelley Kovatis, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Shadi Malaeb, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, Brown University
  • Ogechukwu Menkiti, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Roschanak Mossabeb, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania
  • Nicholas Obiri, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Michael Spear, MD, Clinical Professor
    Fellowship Training: The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania 
  • Michael Szatkowski, MD, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: University of Michigan Medical Center, University of Michigan, Thomas Jefferson University Medical Center, Thomas Jefferson University
  • Heidi Taylor, DO, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University 
  • Suzanne Touch, MD, Associate Professor
    Fellowship Training: Thomas Jefferson University Medical Center/Christiana Care Medical Center/A.I., duPont Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University
  • Yanick Vibert, DO, MPH, Assistant Professor
    Fellowship Training: St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University

Current Fellows with their Residency Training

3rd Year

  • Samuel Ajayi, MD
    Residency Training: Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia
  • Thomas Habib, MD
    Residency Training: Advocate Christ Medical Center, Oak Lawn, IL
  • Linda Nguyen, MD
    Residency Training: UMDNJ Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, NJ
  • Blossom Okafor, DO
    Residency Training: UT Southwestern Austin, Austin TX
2nd Year
  • Geoffrey Bajwa, MD
    Residency Training: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Alison LaBadie, MD
    Residency Training: Rhode Island Hospital, Brown University
  • Melanie Leong, MD
    Residency Training: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Vilmaris Quinones Cardona, MD
    Residency Training: Cooper University Hospital, Rowan University 

1st Year

  • Jessica May-Rabbach: St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Mitali Sahni: University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
  • Ramanan Satchi: Saint Francis Medical Center, University of Illinois
  • Sudip Sheth: Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Amarillo

Recent Graduates with Initial Employment after Fellowship

  • Eddie Chang, MD - Abington Memorial Hospital
  • Kristie Hornick, DO - Toledo Children's Hospital
  • Michelle Kelly, MD - Virtua Health
  • Aspa Fissikoudi, MD - The Hospital at Bowling Green
  • Purvi Jethva, MD - St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Brandon Poterjoy, DO - St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Nadege Brutus, MD - Virtua Health
  • Manjula Mudduluru, MD - St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Subha Sangam, MD - St. Mary's Medical Center
  • Nicolas Obiri, MD - St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Lynn Fuchs, MD - A.I. duPont Children's Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University
  • Meredith Monaco, MD - Albany Medical Center, Albany at SUNY
  • Altina Phaire, MD – Reading Medical Center
  • Heidi Taylor, DO - St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, Drexel University
  • Katie Durrwachter, MD – Einstein Medical Center, Montgomery Campus
  • Kirk Sallas, MD - Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters
  • Dimitrios Angelis, MD – Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine at the Permian Basin
  • Tania Fontanez-Nieves, MD – University of Miami Health Systems 
  • Lindsay Tellefsen, MD – CHOP Newborn Care at Holy Redeemer Hospital
  • Erin Cipko, MD – St. Luke’s Hospital, St. Christopher’s Hospital, Drexel University
  • Keri Fugarolas, MD – Temple University Hospital, St. Christopher’s Hospital, Drexel University
  • Andy Wang, MD – Shore Memorial, St. Christopher’s Hospital, Drexel University
  • Lynn Zeits, MD - Toledo Children's Hospital
  • Jherna Balany, MD- CHOP Newborn Care at Chester County Hospital
  • Kendra Kolb, MD- Lehigh Valley Hospital
  • Panagiotis Kratimenos, MD – Children's National Medical Center, Washington, D.C

How to apply

Please use the ERAS application service (www.erasfellowshipdocuments.org). An application must be complete before a candidate is invited for an interview.

If you have any questions, please contact:

John Wei
Practice Coordinator
St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
160 East Erie Ave
Philadelphia, P​A 19134
(215) 427-5202
john.wei@tenethealth.com

Anja Mowes, MD
Program Director, Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine
St. Christopher's Hospital for Children
160 East Erie Ave
Philadelphia, P​A 19134
(215) 427-5202
anja.mowes @drexelmed.edu

Eligibility

We are happy to accept applications for our Fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine from physicians who will have completed an ACGME approved residency program and are eligible for board certification. Three letters of recommendation from physicians familiar with the applicant's clinical work should be included with the application. (One of the letters of recommendation should be from the Pediatric Program Director.) Once all documentation is complete in ERAS, the application will be reviewed and competitive candidates will be offered interviews. Pennsylvania law requires all fellows to have successfully completed all three Steps of the USMLE prior to entering their fellowship. Therefore, to be placed on the NRMP (www.nrmp.org/fellow ) match list, the applicant must have successfully passed all levels of the USMLE prior to the time the match list is to be submitted.

Foreign Medical graduates who have satisfied the requirements listed above are invited to apply after they have successfully completed the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) process and have a valid certificate number; copies of these documents need to be provided with the application. Where applicable, the candidate needs to have a valid visa. (The Hospital supports visas other than H-visas.) After reviewing all of the information, the staff will contact competitive applicants to arrange an interview.