Curriculum

Required Rotations

Some rotations are held at multiple locations, and duties may be slightly different from one location to the next.

Hospice

Fellows complete rotations at two locations. Learn more about the rotation at each location:

Palliative care unit

Fellows rotate at the Minneapolis VA Health Care System. Adult-focused fellows complete four to eight weeks, and pediatric-focused fellows complete four weeks. Learn more

Palliative care consult service, adult inpatient

Fellows complete a total of six to seven core palliative consultation months at three locations. Learn more about the rotation at each location:

Pediatric neuropalliative care

This four-week rotation at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare is only required for pediatric-focused fellows. Learn more

Pediatric palliative care

Held at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, adult-focused fellows complete four weeks while pediatric-focused fellows can complete up to 32 weeks. Learn more

Elective

Duration: four weeks

Electives must be done at a funded site and can be used for a research project. Some electives that were done by past fellows include:

  • Addiction
  • ALS
  • Bioethics
  • HIV
  • More time in hospice
  • Pain
  • Pediatric home care
  • Scholarly project

Continuity Requirement

Palliative care outpatient continuity clinic

  • Half-day of clinic per week for 11 months
  • Work in an interdisciplinary outpatient palliative care clinic
  • Perform and develop comprehensive palliative care assessments and plans of care for patients
  • Learn more

Research

Fellows must do at least one major scholarly activity and may choose from the following:

Fellows are expected to present their scholarly activity or project to faculty at the end of the fellowship year.

Hospice

Duration & duties

  • Duration: two separate four-week blocks
  • Care for home or on-site palliative and hospice patients with a wide variety of advanced medical and oncological diseases and symptoms as part of an interdisciplinary team 
  • Home and on-site care visits will be done with one or more interdisciplinary team members and supervised by the hospice medical director
  • New hospice patients without an attending physician will be assigned to the fellow for longitudinal hospice care
  • Medical students, residents, or interdisciplinary students may rotate concurrently and interact with the fellow in a learning capacity

Note: A car is required to travel to home or facility visits within the Minneapolis-St.Paul metropolitan area.

Call

  • Participate in the hospice medical director on-call schedule for one consecutive week and weekend per four-week block
  • Phone interactions only to manage or triage patient care issues

Location

Fairview Home Care and Hospice

Inpatient at Hennepin Healthcare

Duration & duties

Duration

The rotation comprises four-week blocks:

  • Adult focused fellows complete a total of approximately eight weeks

Duties

  • Required for adult-focused fellows, serving as one of the core palliative care rotations
  • Provide “virtual” specialty-level palliative consultative service to inpatient units at Hennepin Healthcare
  • Sees patients with advanced and life-limiting illnesses in all areas of the hospital as a member of the Hennepin Healthcare interdisciplinary palliative care consultation team

Opportunities for fellows:

  • Formal ethics consultation, under supervision of ethics consultant
  • Several outpatient experiences, under supervision of palliative care physicians
  • Work one half-day a week in the ALS clinic
  • Work with radiation oncologist, board-certified in palliative care, to learn the uses and limitations of palliative radiation treatments
  • Weekly home hospice visits and team meetings with Hospice of the Twin Cities

Call

  • Participation in the palliative physician nightly telephone on-call schedule and weekend-day
  • Clinical care responsibilities for one week during each four-week block
  • Palliative physician faculty will provide backup for all fellow on-call responsibilities

Location

Hennepin Healthcare

  • Level 1 Trauma Center for adults and pediatrics
  • Palliative care consultation team sees approximately 60 to 75 patients each month, from young adult to advanced age
  • Learn more about Hennepin Healthcare

Inpatient at UMMC

Duration and duties

Duration

Rotation is comprised of four-week blocks:

  • Adult-focused fellows complete a total of 8 to 16 weeks

Duties

  • Required for adult-focused fellows, serving as a foundation of adult palliative medicine training
  • Provide “virtual” specialty-level palliative consultative service to medical, surgical, or intensive care units in the Academic Health Center
  • Provide consultative services to a small group of patients in the medical center
  • Sees adult patients with advanced and life-limiting illnesses in all areas of the hospital as a member of the University of Minnesota Medical Center interdisciplinary palliative care consultation team

Call

  • Participation in the palliative physician nightly telephone on-call schedule and weekend-day
  • Clinical care responsibilities for one week during each four-week block
  • Palliative physician faculty will provide backup for all fellow on-call responsibilities

Location

University of Minnesota Medical Center

  • Comprises two campuses, the East Bank and West Bank, that are connected via a 10-minute shuttle trip
  • Fellows see majority of patients on the East Bank

Outpatient/Community Care

Duration and duties

Duration

  • A longitudinal continuity experience
  • Half-day in clinic per week for approximately 11 months

Duties

  • Work in an interdisciplinary outpatient palliative care clinic
  • Perform comprehensive palliative care assessments and develop palliative plans of care for patients referred to the clinic
  • See new consults for pain, symptom management, support, or care planning in the setting of cancer or severe/advanced illness as well as follow-ups from patients initially evaluated in acute care hospitals or other care environments
  • Fellows usually see one to two new consults and two to four follow-ups per half-day in clinic

Locations

For adult-focused fellows:

For pediatric-focused fellows:

Palliative Care Unit

Duration and duties

Duration

Fellows rotate four weeks at a time:

  • For adult-focused fellows: four to eight weeks
  • For pediatric-focused fellows: four weeks

Duties

  • Provides fellows clinical experience regarding the needs, resources, and barriers to providing palliative care for patients in a long-term care setting
  • Round daily with an interdisciplinary team of health care workers
  • Provide comprehensive medical and psychosocial care to veterans and their families with interdisciplinary team members and under the supervision of the hospice and palliative care unit medical directors
  • Attend biweekly ethics committee meetings and participate in all facility-based educational conferences

Call

  • Fellows may be asked to do call once every four weeks

Location

Minneapolis VA Health Care System Palliative Care and Hospice Services

Pediatric Neuropalliative Care

Duration, description, and call

  • Duration: four weeks
  • Required for pediatric-focused fellows
  • Work in an interdisciplinary inpatient and outpatient palliative care clinic
  • Perform comprehensive palliative care assessments and develop palliative plans of care for patients referred to the clinic
  • See new consults for pain, symptom management, support, or advance care planning in the context of rehabilitation medicine, complex chronic conditions, severe/advanced illness, and follow-ups from patients initially evaluated in acute care hospitals or other care environments
  • Usually sees one new consult and two to four follow-ups per half-day in clinic and two to four inpatients during team rounding
  • Call responsibilities at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota

Location

Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare

Pediatric Palliative Care

Duration and duties

Duration

  • Adult-focused fellows complete four weeks
  • Pediatric-focused fellows complete up to 32 weeks

Duties

  • Fellows gain experience in a broad spectrum of pediatric palliative medicine, collaboration with an interdisciplinary team, and the provision of family-centered care across the continuum of care over time
  • Adult-focused fellows without a background caring for children may receive one-on-one supervision throughout rotation
  • Sees patients as a member of an interdisciplinary pain and palliative care team in the following three care areas:

Children's inpatient palliative care consultation team

  • Care for patients with palliative care and/or end-of-life needs
  • Responsible for daily rounding, assessment, medical-decision making, and new consultation and follow-up visits in the hospital
  • See patients daily, five days a week, and on weekends when on call

Pediatric Advanced Care Team Clinic

  • See new and established patients half-day per week
  • Fellow will be joined by a nurse and social worker at each visit

Children's home care and hospice

  • See active patients in a home-based setting
  • Provide medical assessment, intervention, and treatment planning in collaboration with the family and interdisciplinary team
  • Opportunity to perform at least one home visit for patients seen in other settings, with a goal of seeing three to five patients in a home setting per rotation

Call

  • Participation in the palliative physician nightly telephone on-call schedule and weekend-day
  • Clinical care responsibilities for one week during each four-week block
  • Palliative physician faculty will provide supervision for all fellow on-call responsibilities
  • Call starts on Monday at 5 pm and runs the rest of the week until next Monday at 8:30 am (it’s home call)
  • Pediatric-focused fellows have routine call responsibilities at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota during their rotation at Fairview Homecare and Hospice

Location

Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota

  • Only health system in Minnesota to provide care exclusively to children, from before birth through young adulthood
  • Pain and palliative care team cares for more than 300 children with life-threatening conditions and their families each year, across diverse settings that include inpatient, outpatient, and home-based care
  • Learn more about Children’s

Additional Training

TEACH

  • A six-month faculty development course focused on developing and implementing a curriculum that addresses an educational need
  • Highly collaborative between fellows, residents, and faculty within the department and beyond

Palliative Care Leadership Centers (PCLC)

  • Training in how to start, organize, measure, and grow palliative care programs
  • Fairview Health System is one of eight PCLC located in the country

PalliTalk

  • An annual three-day, regional, communication skills training workshop held at the University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Personalized, resource-intensive, learner-centered education approach