Neurosciences Critical Care Fellowship

The UNM Neurocritical Care Fellowship program in Albuquerque, New Mexico is a UCNS (United Council on Neurological Subspecialites) accredited program that offers a two positions each year for either a two-year program (for those coming from Neurology, Internal Medicine, Emergency Medicine, General Surgery and Anesthesiology) or a one-year program (for those who completed an accredited critical care fellowship or a neurosurgery residency).

We have a 24-bed dedicated neurosciences critical care unit with state-of-the-art monitoring including multimodal intracranial catheters, Moberg monitors, quantitative EEG, depth electrodes for spreading depolarization research/monitoring, advanced bedside ultrasound, transcranial doppler and Flo-Trac. We are part of a larger critical care center including medical, surgical and cardiothoracic surgery ICUs with a regional ECMO center with ECPR services and a mobile ECMO service.

The Neurocritical Care Fellowship provides trainees with an intensive educational program through clinical care, a variety of research options, simulation labs, didactics, fellow-led education and support for attending one national meeting per year.

Our goal is produce an excellent neurointensivist who is also an excellent general intensivist. Our elective curriculum is tailored to the trainee and depends partially on the residency background of the trainee. When the fellowship is complete, the fellow will be eligible to sit for the UCNS neurocritical care certification examination.

A Diverse Patient Population

University of New Mexico has the only medical school in the state as well as the only level one trauma center and the only hospital with neurocritical care and advanced neurosurgical procedure. The fellow will always have more than enough patients to see with a wide range of neurological and neurosurgical pathologies.

The fellow will also be immersed in a racially and ethnically diverse population with an introduction to the numerous pueblos of the indigenous people in New Mexico. It makes for an incredible education not just from a medical standpoint but also in understanding approaches from many different beliefs in advanced medical care and end-of-life care.

We are also a JCAHO advanced stroke center with two vascular neurosurgeons and one neurointerventional radiologist available for 24/7 interventions. Additionally, we have a large epilepsy group providing 24/7 EEG reading, intracranial grid monitoring and epilepsy surgery.

There is a comprehensive cancer center with Neuro-oncology and neurosurgical support for cranial tumor resection but also extensive spine tumor resection and reconstruction. Trauma and stroke/intracerebral hemorrhage are our most common patients but the rest can be anything from TB and fungal meningitis to rare neuromuscular disorders to uncommon autoimmune disorders.

Apply for a Neurocritical Care Fellowship

Experienced a well-rounded neuro- medical and surgical critical care education in a supportive environment.

Supportive Learning Environment and Mentoring

The program director is Diana Greene-Chandos MD, FNCS who has a long history of developing successful training programs and neurointensive care units. She has recently brought this expertise to UNM. Her goal with any program is to create a comfortable and open environment where the fellow feels like there is rigorous training, but enough time for family and/or outside interests. She has an open door/open text policy to all of her fellows, even after they graduate. She also served for three years as the Chair of the Women in Neurocritical Care Section of the International Neurocritical Care Society (NCS).

In addition to Dr. Greene-Chandos, there are seven additional neurocritical care faculty to help in training the fellow from different backgrounds. From the Neurology Department there is: Michel Torbey MD, MPH, FNCS, FCCM, FAHA, FANA, FAAN who is the Department Chair and a Past-President of the NCS; Tobias Kulik MD who is the medical director of the unit; and Omar Hussein MD who is also fellowship trained in EEG. From the Emergency Medicine Department there is: Robert Alunday MD who is a leader in the critical care center. From the Neurosurgical Department there is: Chad Cole MD who is the associate medical director of the unit; Christian Ricks MD and Huy Tran MD.

This is a group of collegial physicians that work together to improve the quality of care and the education in the unit daily. The group works well with the critical care center that has an additional twenty-six attending intensivists in the different ICUs. There is 24/7 attending support in the ICUs. There is also a dedicated, stellar group of Acute Care Nurse Practitioners that work closely with fellows and are supportive of their education. The unit otherwise has Neurology residents, Emergency Medicine residents and pre-resident fellows in Neurology, Neurosurgery and Critical Care rotating in the unit as well as fourth year medical students.

Apply for the Fellowship

We participate in the San Francisco match. This match takes place in June the year prior to the matriculation of the fellow. Applications will open in the October immediately prior to the June match. If there are openings for positions outside of the match, to start sooner than the traditional match timeline, they will also be posted on the San Francisco Match webpage. If there is a posting for such a position, those applications will be sent directly to Dr. Greene-Chandos- dgreenechandos@salud.unm.edu.

Otherwise, for the traditional timeline through the match, click here to receive more information and start your application: http://sfmatch.org

Curriculum

Education and Goals

The UNM NCC Fellowship Program will use the UCNS milestones found on http://ucns.org (click accreditation, scroll down to subspecialty milestones and click on neurocritical care milestones) to guide the fellow’s education and successes in the program. There will be monthly meetings with the program director and bi-annual 360 degree evaluations to help the fellow further define educational goals and clinical goals. There are numerous educational opportunites through our own weekly neurocritical care fellows conference; Neurology conferences and Grand Rounds; Neurosurgery conferences and Grand Rounds; and Critical Care Center Conferences and Grand Rounds. The fellow will take an in-service examination yearly- the MCCKAP to assess their critical care board-exam skills. The fellow will also receive training in Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) and Emergency Neurologic Life Support (ENLS).

Required Rotations (see also example curricula)

  • Transcranial Doppler
  • Critical care EEG
  • Neurointervential
  • Medical Intensive Care
  • Surgical/Trauma Intensive Care
  • Trauma Surgery
  • Cardiovascular Critical Care (and ECMO team)
  • Stroke (Acute and Inpatient Service)

Elective Rotations (see also example curricula)

  • Research
  • Neuromuscular
  • Neuroimmunology
  • Neurosurgery
  • Neuroradiology
  • Neuro-Oncology
  • Palliative Medicine

Benefits

UNM offers highly competitive salaries and tremendous benefits to our residents and fellows. The GME offices offers an overview of salary, benefits and employment eligibility.

Enjoy learning in a place with 300 days of sunshine yearly, a plethora of outdoor activities, outstanding food and cultural events with a reasonable cost of living.

We are happy for your interest in UNM Neurocritical Care. We look forward to hearing from you. Please email dgreenechandos@salud.unm.edu for any questions.