Pediatric Infectious Diseases Fellowship
The Pediatric Infectious Diseases (ID) Fellowship Training Program trains outstanding physician-scholars who emerge with world-class clinical, scientific, and teaching experience. Based in the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University and the 360-bed Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, the program provides a balanced and organized training experience with exposure to a wide range of common to rare infectious diseases and additional clinical experience available at other Northwestern Medicine sites. Research training opportunities span the scope of laboratories and clinical research groups at Feinberg and across Chicago. Fellows obtain in-depth exposure to microbiology, virology, immunology, epidemiology, clinical pharmacology, antibiotic stewardship, and infection prevention and control as they relate to patient care, training in the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases, and scholarship. Fellows are encouraged to develop the skills needed to be future leaders in the field. The three-year training experience includes submersion in the clinical experience in the first year followed by two concentrated years of mentored research time. Fellows develop novel scholarly projects leading to publications and presentations of their studies at national and international meetings. Fellows are also supported to pursue a master’s degree (MSCI, MPH). The development of teaching skills is emphasized, with fellows given opportunities to develop public speaking and didactic skills. Individualized mentorship and flexibility allow each fellow’s scholarship plan to fit their personal and future goals. Our program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.
video: meet Dr. Leena Mithal. program director
The three-year training experience includes submersion in the clinical experience in the first year followed by two years of concentrated mentored research time. Fellows are expected to develop novel scholarly projects leading to multiple publications in peer-reviewed journals and presentations of their studies at national and international meetings. Fellows are supported to pursue a Master in Public Health or Master of Science in Clinical Investigation. After successful completion of our fellowship program, fellows become eligible to sit for the Pediatric Infectious Diseases sub-board examination of the American Board of Pediatrics to become board-certified. This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.
While the majority of clinical teaching and mastery occurs during patient care, didactic teaching and conferences are valuable learning opportunities incorporated into our program.
- Fellows’ inpatient clinical time is split between the general infectious diseases and transplant infectious diseases services. The first year serves as the main clinical year with approximately 40 weeks of service, followed by 4 weeks of clinical service second and third year.
- Fellows learn through outpatient clinical care during their second and third year, with three outpatient clinics per month between our general infectious disease clinic and our HIV care clinic.
- Fellows have the opportunity to teach residents frequently, as all Pediatric residents spend at least two weeks on our inpatient consult service.
- Fellows provide structured teaching to the General Pediatrics residents and students on introductory and common ID topics such as pneumonia, osteomyelitis, and Kawasaki disease.
- There are recommended learning experiences including Antimicrobial Stewardship, Infection Prevention and Control, clinical trials, quality improvement, and root cause analyses for medical errors.
- First year starts with two weeks of microbiology learning including a lecture series with first year adult infectious diseases fellows and time spent within our microbiology laboratory to learn the instrumentation, procedures, and workflow of our clinical diagnostics.
- Fellows receive didactic clinical education on advanced infectious disease topics twice monthly from faculty within the division, invited lecturers, and co-fellows.
- In our Joint Conference, fellows have the chance to present and learn from interesting cases from both adult and pediatric ID services.
- Journal club occurs once a month, allowing everyone in the division to come together to discuss cutting-edge and controversial publications.
- All Lurie fellows come together quarterly in a department-wide “Fellows College” to learn and discuss broadly applicable topics toward developing career leadership skills such as: job application and negotiation, research design, and physician wellness.
- Fellows are offered the opportunity and support to learn outside of the hospital setting at The Graduate School at Northwestern University.
- Lurie offers a wealth of weekly learning opportunities for all health care providers, including:
- Resident Morning Report: Residents present interesting cases from their inpatient teams to strengthen differential building and clinical management strategies. Fellow drop ins are always appreciated and add focused insight.
- FIRM Rounds: This weekly conference focuses on a rare, unusual, or hard-to-diagnose illness. Multiple subspecialists attend to provide input and explain their approach to diagnosis and treatment.
- Grand Rounds: Lecturers from Northwestern as well as all over the globe come to present their cutting-edge research, advocacy work, and areas of expertise. Every year also includes College Bowl, a quiz bowl partnering our senior faculty with senior residents to see who has the best pediatrics knowledge!
Diversity & Inclusion
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine seeks to attract inquisitive, motivated fellows and is committed to providing them with every opportunity for success. We encourage a diverse and inclusive work environment that allows each trainee to achieve their personal goals.
For more information on Northwestern’s commitment to diversity, please see the McGaw Diversity & Inclusion page, the Northwestern McGaw Underrepresented Residents & Fellows Forum and Feinberg School of Medicine Office of Diversity and Inclusion.
The goal of the fellowship research experience is to provide our fellows with a strong platform from which to build an eventual career in pediatric infectious diseases. With the assistance of the program, fellows form a Scholarship Oversight Committee to supervise the development and conduct of the research throughout the fellowship.
The Fellowship Training Program dedicates most of the last two years of fellowship to basic science, translational, clinical, or health-services research under the supervision of an experienced mentor and advisory committee.
- Mentors may be selected from faculty within the division, faculty at Feinberg or, less commonly, from a different institution.
- A joint T32 training grant is shared by the adult and pediatric ID fellowship programs at Northwestern, providing additional support and oversight for fellows’ scientific activity.
- Fellows are provided with resources to gain experience in grant-writing, presentations at local, national and international meetings, networking, and ultimately publication of their original research.
- In addition, financial support is available for fellows to complete a Master of Public Health or a Master of Science in Clinical Investigation and build an enhanced foundation for their clinical investigations.
- Uniquely, a funded, research-intensive fourth year is also available to allow fellows to achieve greater independence before starting their faculty careers and to increase their likelihood of success in garnering an early career award soon in their junior faculty years.
The following links include important potential resources for research:
- Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute
- Simpson Querrey Biomedical Research Center
- Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (NUCATS)
- Institute for Global Health
- Department of Microbiology-Immunology
We approach every bedside as a place of clinical care, teaching, and science to provide a rich learning experience in the clinical environment.
- The majority of the inpatient clinical experience occurs in the first year of fellowship when fellows take primary responsibility for managing the infectious diseases consult team.
- The inpatient consult service is divided into the General ID and the Transplant ID teams. Fellows primarily see patients on the General ID team but have scheduled rotations on the Transplant ID team.
- Fellows see patients with a wide range of infectious diseases diagnoses and immunodeficiencies. Patients may have a variety of co-morbidities and exposures, including primary immune deficiencies, oncologic processes, stem cell or solid organ transplantation, biological therapeutic exposure, surgical complications, and international travel.
- Fellows develop the ability to form a broad differential (infectious and non-infectious) and provide evidence-based recommendations for evaluation and management.
- Reflecting the prominence of Chicago as an international city, patients have diverse racial, ethnic, socioeconomic and geographic backgrounds, increasing the breadth of the clinical experience.
- The outpatient clinical experience is spread throughout the second and third years of fellowship and includes the General Infectious Diseases Clinic and the Special Infectious Diseases (SID) Clinic.
- The General ID Clinic provides care for new patients, hospital follow-up patients, referrals from community providers, and patients followed on a regular basis with a wide variety of infectious diseases.
- The SID Clinic cares for children with exposure to HIV or with HIV infection. Many SID patients are enrolled in NIH-sponsored antiretroviral treatment protocols.
Requirements & Eligibility
Applicants for this fellowship must have completed an ACGME-accredited residency in pediatrics or equivalent training, be board-eligible for certification general pediatrics and meet the State of Illinois’ requirements for medical licensure. Non-U.S. citizens need to obtain a valid Visa and authorization to work in the United States.
Fellowship applications are processed through the Electronic Residency Application Service of the Association of American Medical Colleges during the fall application cycle. All applications are processed through the National Resident Matching Program. Highly qualified applicants are selected for a visit to Northwestern and Lurie Children’s to allow us to show how our innovative program can benefit the applicant's career development and expertise in pediatric infectious diseases.
Discover the many ways our faculty are impacting children's health beyond the hospital.
Each year, as many as 20 third-year pediatric residents travel to Bugando Medical Center in Mwanza, Tanzania, to participate in an educational initiative that provides exposure to the management of complex pediatric diseases in a low-resource setting. Learn more about this extraordinary opportunity.
Northwestern’s Institute for Global Health Center researches and investigates the pressing challenges related to communicable diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV, as well as global emerging infectious diseases. Visit their Center for Global Communicable and Emerging Infectious Diseases and Center for Pathogen Genomics and Microbial Evolution to learn more about these opportunities.
Housestaff training through McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University provides diverse and challenging clinical experiences and world-class education located in the heart of the beautiful city of Chicago. Learn more via the links to the McGaw website below.
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Leena B. Mithal, MD, MSCI
Program Director, Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics; Attending Physician, Division of Infectious Diseases
Taylor Heald-Sargent, MD, PhD
Associate Program Director, Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics; Attending Physician, Division of Infectious Diseases
Medical Education Coordinator, Pediatric Infectious Diseases Fellowship
Watch the videos below to meet some of the people on our team.
Further program details, including the housestaff manual and a sample training contract, are available on the McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University site.
Physician-Scientist Training & Resources
We offer a wide range of resources, mentorship opportunities and formal training programs to help our residents and fellows excel as physician-scientists. Explore all of the resources and hear from housestaff who are making research a major part of their career development plans.