Gastroenterology-Hepatology Fellowship

John W. Birk, M.D., FACG
John W. Birk, M.D., FACG

The UConn Gastroenterology-Hepatology Fellowship Program is a three-year, ACGME-accredited academic training program which is divided into two month rotations at UConn Health, Hartford Hospital, Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center and The Hospital of Central Connecticut.

Applications are accepted through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS), and program trainees are selected through the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP). The program currently accepts three new trainees per year for a total program size of nine fellows. Upon successful completion of the fellowship, graduates will be eligible to take the American Board of Internal Medicine subspecialty examination in gastroenterology.

The UConn Gastroenterology-Hepatology Fellowship Program is structured to provide extensive training in every major discipline of gastrointestinal disease. The first year is devoted to clinical inpatient consultation services in gastroenterology, hepatology and endoscopy at UConn Health, Hartford Hospital and The Hospital of Central Connecticut. The second year is comprised of clinical inpatient and outpatient rotations at Saint Francis Hospital and a research rotation, while the third year includes both inpatient and outpatient rotations at John Dempsey Hospital and Hartford Hospital. The program is a graded experience with close supervision in the first year, followed by more independence in the second and third years. In addition to increased independence and responsibility, exposure to advanced procedures is integrated into the second and third years resulting in substantial opportunity for training in ERCP, therapeutic endoscopy, capsule endoscopy, Bravo, motility and exposure to diagnostic and therapeutic EUS. Two outpatient liver transplant clinics (at Hartford Hospital and Saint Francis Hospital) give fellows concentrated exposure to the evaluation of pre- and post-transplant patients. An inpatient liver transplant service takes place at Hartford Hospital, and a women’s health clinic and an IBD clinic occur at UConn John Dempsey Hospital. 

Each Gastroenterology-Hepatology fellow has a one-half day per week continuity clinic experience at an affiliated site with responsibility for the outpatient management of a group of assigned patients for the duration of the fellowship. Nighttime and weekend call is shared among all fellows. 

Didactic sessions covering broad topics in gastroenterology and hepatology are centralized at UConn Health. These sessions occur weekly and include conferences such as Gastroenterology-Hepatology Ground Rounds, journal club, board review, morbidity and mortality conferences, pathology review and radiology review. The program participates in the American Gastroenterological Association’s Gastroenterology Training Examination annually.

John W. Birk, M.D., FACG
Program Director