Surgical Critical Care

Surgical Critical Care Fellowship Overview

The Fellowship in Surgical Critical Care, a joint program between Prisma Health–Midlands and the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, began in July 2002.

The accredited one-year program accepts one fellow each academic year. All applicants should be board eligible in general surgery or have completed three years of general surgery training, and have a letter from their program director providing assurance that the fellow may return to general surgery training following completion of the critical care fellowship.

The mission of the surgical critical care fellowship is to provide:

  • An educational environment to develop the skills for state-of-the-art support of human physiology under the stress of extreme illness, injury or surgery
  • Compassionate and humanistic care to those individuals with critical surgical illness
  • An environment for developing a program optimized for clinical basic scientists who will become leaders in the arena of multidisciplinary critical care medicine.

The program has two goals for the fellow: 1) to become proficient in the recognition and comprehensive management of problems commonly encountered in the surgical critical care arena and 2) to satisfy requirements and successfully obtain certification in surgical critical care by the American Board of Surgery.

Care of the critically ill patient. Procedures are performed under the supervision of the program’s faculty. Gradually increasing levels of responsibility are given to fellows as their skill level improves and the fellow is deemed competent to independently provide care.

The program director and fellow meet monthly to monitor progress, in addition to a bi-annual interview session to discuss performance, review clinical caseload, documentation and other issues regarding the fellow’s training, professional or personal issues. The surgical critical care fellow is required to take the Adult Multidisciplinary Critical Care Knowledge Assessment examination and the American Board of Surgery in-service training examination during the academic year.

During the course of the fellowship the fellow will:

  • Acquire the knowledge base and level of skill necessary to independently manage critically ill surgery patients
  • Use and become proficient with advanced technology to monitor the patient’s pathophysiologic status
  • Acquire skills necessary to organize, administer and supervise the critical care units including its specialized personnel
  • Implementation of policies and procedures and direct the integration and cooperation with other units
  • Perform a leadership role in teaching and research in surgical critical care through service direction, delegation of assignments, leading teaching conferences and research project development and oversight
  • Be knowledgeable of legal, ethical and socioeconomic issues relating to care of the critically ill patient
  • Develop advanced decision making skills in a Critical Care setting
  • Become a critical reviewer of medical literature to make appropriate application of old and new science for treatment of the critically ill or injured
  • Demonstrate the elements of compassion, understanding, professionalism and dignity