Stanford Advanced Heart Failure Transplant Cardiology (AHFTC) Fellowship Program

The Stanford Advanced Heart Failure Transplant Cardiology (AHFTC) fellowship program is a one-year training program that follows an academic calendar (July 1-June 30). At the end of the program, graduating fellows will qualify to serve as medical directors of UNOS-certified heart transplant programs and will be eligible for certification in Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiology by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM).

Our program was among the first in the country to be certified by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), with accreditation starting in July 2013.  We accept three fellows per year, and candidates must have completed general cardiology training at an ACGME-accredited program.

Core Curriculum

The program consists of 3 clinical rotations, each of 4 months’ duration:

  • Stanford Inpatient Heart Transplant/Mechanical Circulatory Support rotation: Inpatient care of patients who have received cardiac transplantation or mechanical circulatory support (MCS) at Stanford Hospital. The service provides consultative services as part of a multi-disciplinary team in the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit and post-operative floors for patients who have had cardiac transplant, temporary mechanical support, ECMO, and permanently implantable VADs.  The primary patients covered by the service are comprised of those who have had cardiac transplantation or MCS and are readmitted to the hospital.  The team also provides consultative services for transplant patients who are occasionally admitted to the hospital under another service.  The inpatient service is staffed with advanced care practitioners who are primarily responsible for daily patient management.  While on this rotation, the Heart Failure fellow is responsible for covering two weekends per month. 
  • Stanford Outpatient rotation: This rotation consists of outpatient care through the various clinics offered within the Heart Failure section.  These clinics include the heart transplant clinic, which has cared for over 1700 patients and provides our fellows with a comprehensive post-transplant training experience.  The mechanical circulatory support clinic offers an opportunity to provide longitudinal care for patients while they are supported on a device.  During this rotation, fellows will also be given the opportunity to rotate through advanced heart failure clinics, the genetic cardiomyopathy clinic, amyloid clinic, and cardio-oncology clinic.  The fellows will also spend time in the Stanford cardiac catheterization lab performing right heart catheterizations and endomyocardial biopsies on transplant patients and hemodynamic ramp studies on patients with mechanical circulatory support.  Furthermore, this rotation can be structured to allow the fellow to seek out other clinical experiences to enhance their training, and to provide time away from clinical activities to pursue research and other academic interests.
  • Kaiser Santa Clara: Fellows rotate through Kaiser Santa Clara, the Northern California referral center for advanced heart failure, MCS, and heart transplantation within the Kaiser Permanente network-- the largest managed care organization in the United States. Fellows are involved in the inpatient and outpatient care of patients with advanced heart failure, recipients of MCS, and heart transplant recipients.  During this rotation the Heart Failure Fellow is responsible for covering two weekends per month.

Research

All fellows are expected to develop their scholarly interests in the form of research and writing. There are many opportunities for involvement in on-going clinical and translational research programs at Stanford, as well as co-authorship of review articles, book chapters, and other scientific publications. Fellows are encouraged to present their work at national meetings and funds are available to support such travel.  The outpatient rotation was specifically developed to allow our fellows the opportunity to pursue their research interests during the course of their training.

Conferences

A wide variety of conferences are offered weekly at Stanford and Kaiser. These conferences complement the fellowship training program and include (but are not limited to):

  • AHFTC Core Curriculum Lectures: weekly lectures by heart failure faculty as well as consultants on a wide range of topics related to the clinical care of patients with advanced heart failure, MCS, and heart transplant recipients
  • Cardiomyopathy conference: weekly multi-disciplinary clinical conference focused on management strategies for patients with advanced heart disease
  • Heart transplant journal club: monthly review of impactful articles from the literature
  • Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine series: weekly conference focused on basic and translational research
  • Cardiac  Imaging Conference:  a  weekly conference to review cardiac imaging
  • Advanced heart failure, transplant, and MCS multi-disciplinary clinical care meeting :  the weekly conference for presentation and listing of candidates for transplantation or MCS, and review of challenging inpatient cases

Please see Application Process to apply.