Fellowship Training in Gastroenterology

The goal of the UC San Diego Gastroenterology Fellowship Program is to teach trainees to master the basic clinical and endoscopic/procedural skills required to act as a consultant to patients with general gastroenterology and hepatology diseases and to acquire skills necessary for the critical evaluation and interpretation of basic and/or clinical research in the field.

Training Tracks

  • Clinical track - meant for training gastroenterologists who will pursue clinical academic careers, which may also include a fourth-year advanced fellowship (i.e., advanced endoscopy, transplant hepatology, inflammatory bowel disease, motility).
  • Research track - funded by an NIH T32-funded training grant, which is meant to train physician-scientists who will pursue future NIH-funded research in either clinical or basic sciences.

Typically, there are nine fellows on the clinical track and three on the research track. Learn more about our training tracks.

Patient Care Requirements

Each fellow is required to complete 18 months of direct patient care activities in the subspecialty of gastroenterology and hepatology and 36 months of weekly continuity clinic. Fellows usually complete 12 months of inpatient clinical consult rotations during the first year of fellowship. The second and third years of fellowship are a combination of clinical (at least 6 months) and research rotations, depending on whether the fellow is in the clinical or NIH-funded T32 research training grant track.

The continuity clinic experience is evenly divided between GI and Liver Clinics, with patients being seen at UC San Diego Health locations and the VA San Diego Healthcare System. In addition, all fellows are expected to attend the core conferences during all three years of training.

Diverse Educational Opportunities

One of the most important aspects of our clinical fellowship program is the diversity of educational opportunities while fellows rotate through a variety of clinical settings.

The rotation at UC San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest is where fellows learn about liver transplant patients, end-stage liver disease, general gastrointestinal problems and HIV-related gastrointestinal problems.

Thornton Hospital at UC San Diego Health in La Jolla (Thornton rotation) allows fellows to take care of patients requiring advanced endoscopy procedures (i.e., ERCP, EUS), gastrointestinal cancer patients, bone marrow transplant patients and geriatric patients.

VA San Diego Healthcare System (VASDHS) cares for military veterans with a variety of general gastrointestinal and hepatology problems.

Kaiser Permanente San Diego provides an excellent educational opportunity for a high volume of general gastrointestinal problems and endoscopy (i.e., endoscopic hemostasis, ERCP for bile duct stones, PEG placements, etc).

Fellows rotate through Rady Children's Hospital - San Diego for exposure to pediatric gastroenterology and through UC San Diego Medical Center - Hillcrest and VASDHS motility labs for motility disorder experience.

Fellows during their three-year program may also enroll in the UC San Diego Clinical Research Enhancement through Supplemental Training (CREST) Program. This is an NIH-funded program to train clinical investigators. The program has 1-year, 2-year, or 3-year (MPH) training tracks. Classes are held one afternoon (4 - 6 p.m.) per week. Clinical and research fellows are encouraged to enroll. For more information, please see the CREST Web site.

Denise Kalmaz, MD
Program Director