Department of Emergency Medicine

Emergency Medicine | Education

Ultrasound Fellowship


Anthony J. Dean, MD
Fellowship Director
Nova Panebianco, MD
Fellowship Associate Director

At Penn, emergency ultrasonography is often referred to as EMBU: Emergency Medicine Bedside Ultrasound.  Our goal is not to train doctors who can perform as ultrasound techs, but to mentor emergency physicians who have special skills that can provide diagnostic, interventional, and therapeutic information to be used in a wide gamut of emergency situations.  This is accomplished in a stimulating and rigorous academic environment that will also prepare the fellow for a career as a leader, researcher, and educator in this field.

Practice opportunities

Practice opportunities for the emergency physicians with fellowship training in EMBU are likely to include:

  • Academic Practice - as the EMBU director of a residency or fellowship program.
  • Academic Community Practice - Many residency programs utilize “satellite” community ED sites to extend the practice experience of their residents.
  • Community Practice - With the growing recognition by hospital administrators of the potential cost-savings of point-of-care ultrasound (due to saved wages for technicians and avoidance of tech attrition from night-call), as well as the potential revenue stream to be realized from reimbursement for physician-performed EMBU, many community EDs are establishing ultrasound programs.

Post-Graduate Training

Post-graduate training in EMBU usually entails a 1-year fellowship following the completion of an emergency medicine residency.  A small number of fellowships combine areas of study (e.g. EMBU and EMS or EMBU and public health).  Since EUS is not an ACGME-recognized subspecialty, there is not a uniform approach to fellowship training.  Most programs include the following components, with varying emphasis. 

  • Clinical expertise
  • Cognitive skills
  • Scientific endeavors
  • Educational activity
  • Administrative Expertise
  • Miscellaneous issues

The Penn Ultrasound Fellowship Overview

The year will fall into sections with evolving emphasis on different components of the fellowship. 

First Quarter

Fellow will concentrate on attaining a high level of proficiency in scanning in the entire range of emergency sonographic applications, and becoming familiar with the inner workings of the department and residency.

Second Quarter

Research projects will get under way, and the fellow will focus on assimilating the cognitive material to pass the RDMS examination. One resident lecture will be given by the end of the November. One abstract will be submitted for the AIUM meeting (deadline 11/01/07). The fellow will start to perform the QA review of ultrasounds performed in the department.

Third Quarter

Fllow will concentrate increasingly on teaching and research. Investigations should be coming to a conclusion, and paper outlines will be drafted. The fellow will review all scans performed in the department. An abstract should be prepared for the SAEM national meeting, submission deadline.

Fourth Quarter

Reports of the research investigations will be drafted and submitted for publication. Two resident lectures should be given.

Service commitment

  • 19 hours of clinical shift coverage per week, for 46 weeks per year.
  • 46 weekly “sonography shifts” per year.
  • The fellow is permitted to moonlight no more than 2 shifts per month during the first half of the year, and no more than 3 shifts per month thereafter.

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