Palliative Medicine

Amy Case, MD, and fellow Mehak Swami, MD.

“Our program provides fellows with the close mentorship, clinical expertise and research training they need for productive careers in palliative medicine,” says Amy A. Case, MD (left), who mentors fellow Mehak Swami, MD.

The fellowship in hospice and palliative medicine is ACGME accredited and can lead to Certification of Added Qualifications in Palliative Medicine as approved by the American Board of Medical Specialties.

To be considered for admission, candidates must have completed an ACGME-approved residency in one of the following specialties:

  • Anesthesiology
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Family Medicine
  • Internal Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Pediatrics
  • Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
  • Psychiatry
  • Radiation Oncology
  • Surgery

Inpatient/Consultation over six months encompasses:

  • Four months with the VA Palliative Care Consult Service and Inpatient Palliative Care Unit working under the supervision of the fellowship program director as well as with the nurse, social worker and chaplain. Fellows will also have the opportunity to rotate with the oncology service at the VA for one month on elective.
  • Two months with the Center for Hospice & Palliative Care (CHPC) Hospice Buffalo Inpatient Unit (a 22-bed unit) supervised by the hospice medical director and other staff hospice physicians participating in patient rounds, daily care, as well as family and interdisciplinary team meetings. This rotation includes consultative service at hospitals with 12 hospice swing beds and 10 hospice residence beds.
  • One-month rotation with Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center Pain & Palliative Care Service, during which fellows perform hospice and palliative medicine consults for inpatient and outpatient cancer patients supervised by an attending trained in palliative medicine.
  • Hospice home care over two months of the year has trainees visiting patients in the home with members of the interdisciplinary team. They are expected to maintain continuity of care and see at least 25 home care patients during the year, keeping a log of how many visits and patients, in addition to home care visit opportunities at 40 affiliated regional nursing homes.
  • Long-term nursing home visits for one month of the year have fellows working with a geriatrics attending physician and learning about delirium, polypharmacy, falls, incontinence and wound care.
  • Ambulatory Continuity Clinic for one half-day every other week at Roswell Park Palliative Care Clinic is an interdisciplinary clinic setting with exposure to oncology patients with advanced disease who are treated for pain and non-pain symptoms, psychosocial and spiritual issues. The required ambulatory hospice and palliative medicine clinic is where fellows will work one full day per month for the entire year, carrying a panel of patients which they follow up with and manage throughout the year.
  • Pediatric experience includes two-week rotations with the Hematology/Oncology Pediatric Service at Oishei Children’s Hospital and two weeks on the hematology/oncology service at Roswell Park. They also spend time with a pediatric physiatrist in the Spina Bifida Clinic two half-days per month, and the Developmental Motor Clinic one half-day per week. They work with a pediatric nephrologist one half-day twice during the month and interview patients and families of children who are on dialysis.
  • Two-month elective time in a clinically relevant field is offered and available in ethics consultations, geriatric medicine, interventional pain management, psychiatry, HIV clinic, pediatrics, radiation oncology, pulmonary, cardiology, neurology, scholarly activity (research) or other experiences determined to be appropriate by the program director. Fellows choose the elective and together with the program director, arrange the rotation at one of the participating institutions. Each elective experience has written competency-based goals and objectives supplied to both the fellow and supervising physician prior to starting the rotation.
  • Scholarly activity or a scholarly project is required by completion of the fellowship. Examples may include starting or helping work on an existing academic research project, presentation of a poster/abstract at a national meeting, or publication of a case report, review article or book chapter. Fellows are asked to keep a portfolio for documentation. One month of elective time may be dedicated to their project.

Training Sites

Contact Us

Program Director

Training Program Administrator

Sandra Gilliam

Training Program Administrator

Office of Graduate Medical Education

Erie County Medical Center, DK Miller Building, 462 Grider St., Buffalo NY 14215

Phone: (716) 961-6955; Fax: (716) 961-6960