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Michael Ault, MD, FCCP
Director, Critical Care Medicine Fellowship


Louanne Carabini, MD

Assistant Director

Critical Care Medicine Fellowship

The Department of Anesthesiology at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine and Northwestern Memorial Hospital has played an active role in the development and maturation of critical care medicine as a subspecialty. Recently, the AMA reported that hospitals may not be able to staff their ICUs unless more physicians are trained to become intensivists. Because of this anticpated shortage, Northwestern is committed to the recruitment and training of consummate  specialists in critical care.

The faculty members of the Department of Anesthesiology and other departments involved in the training of our critical care fellows are dedicated to providing an exemplary educational experience for anesthesiologists who are interested in a career, either private or academic, involving critical care medicine.

The management responsibilities of the fellow range from pure consultation services to total patient management. In addition, the critical care medicine fellow supervises anesthesiology, surgery, neurology, and neurosurgery residents in the care of these patients. Fellows become proficient in various technical procedures, including transesophageal echocardiography and bronchoscopy. Our goal is to educate well-rounded intensivists capable of caring for all critically ill patients.

Leaders in the Section of Critical Care Anesthesiology are responsible for:

  • Medical direction of cardio-pulmonary resuscitation processes throughout the institution
  • Medical direction of the Neurosciences/Spine ICU (23 beds)
  • Medical direction of the Cardiothoracic/Transplant ICU (23 beds)
  • Medical direction of the PACU
  • Medical direction of the blood gas lab
  • Medical Direction and clinical coordination of the operating rooms

The critical care medicine fellows gain exposure to management methods and issues relating to the above functions.

The Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program is accredited by the ACGME for five years. Completion of the program meets requirements for the American Board of Anesthesiology special certification in Critical Care Medicine. The service is supervised by Anesthesiology attending physicians who are board-certified in Critical Care Medicine. Applications will be accepted as much as two years prior to start of the fellowship and applicants interviewed throughout the year.

During the 12 month fellowship, the majority of the time will be spent working with adult critically ill patients. These will be primarily surgical critical care patients, including multiple trauma, spinal cord injury, brain injury or other neurologic insults, cardiac, vascular and thoracic surgeries (including major thoraco-abdomincal and mechanical ventricular assist devices) in addition to transplantation procedures (cardiac, liver, renal, prancreas).

Additional clinical experiences include general medical critical care (36 Bed ICU), Pediatric ICU, acute cardiology (12 Bed CCU) and transesophageal echocardiography. Other responsibilities include supervision and teaching of residents and senior medical students and acting as a liaison between the Critical Care Service and other clinical services involved in the care of various critically ill patients.

Elective rotations on other clinical services pertinent to Critical Care Medicine are available. The elective component of the fellowship is flexible and will be tailored to meet the educational needs of individual applicants and, wherever possible, their particular interests and desires.

Fellows are strongly encouraged to develop individual clinical research projects or to participate in any of the ongoing clinical research projects of the Critical Care Section. Fellows will receive guidance in the development of research plans and the implementation of clinical research projects which encompass drug and device developments, epidemiologic outcomes in critical care, and projects in simulation education.

The Section of Critical Care Medicine in the Department of Anesthesiology has primary clinical responsibilities in the Cardiothoracic/Transplant ICU (23 Beds) and the Neurosciences/Spine ICU (23 Beds).

Graduating fellows take leadership roles at local, regional, and national levels. These include leadership activity in the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologist (SOCCA),  the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM), and the Society of Cardiovascular Anesthesiologists (SCA).

CCM Fellow Benefits

In addition to departmental benefits, the critical care medicine fellow receives:

  • $500 Education Fund for (e) books or e-learning devices
  • Memberships in the Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologist (SOCCA) and Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM)
  • Funding for one continuing medical education meeting, either the ASCCA/ASA or the SCCM
  • Funding for an additional Academic/Research meeting. Fellows who present an abstract at a national meeting/conference will receive funding for their trip, provided the Program Director approves the absence from training.
  • ATLS and PALS certification
  • Paid registration for the MCCKAP (in-training preparation for the CCM certification exam)
  • Dedicated office space with desktop computer

Click Here for Application and Selection Process

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This page last updated 

March 26, 2013
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Department of Anesthesiology
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
251 E. Huron St, F5-704
Chicago, IL 60611
Telephone: 312/695-0061
Fax: 312/695-9013

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