The Pediatric Dermatology Fellowship Program was introduced in 1998. Based at Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, fellows are involved in clinical activities and research involving pediatric dermatology.
This fellowship is not ACGME-accredited, as there are no Pediatric Dermatology programs accredited at this time. It is directly associated with the UC San Diego Department of Pediatrics, which is an ACGME-accredited program. Pediatric dermatology has been recently approved as a designated specialty by the American Board of Medical Specialties. Over the next few years, program accreditation will most likely take place.
Fellowship candidates will have graduated from an ACGME-accredited medical school in the U.S. or Canada, or from an international medical school, and have fulfilled the requirements for continued medical training in the U.S. Candidates will have participated in residency training in the U.S., Canada or an international program.
Generally, pediatric dermatology fellows have completed a dermatology residency prior to a fellowship. However, fellows do not have to have completed their dermatology boards prior to starting fellowship. Completion of USMLE Steps I and II are required for application; completion of all three steps prior to commencement of fellowship is preferred. Fellowship selection will be contingent upon the candidate’s acquisition of California state medical licensure or licensure equivalent.
The clinical program involves ambulatory dermatology clinics and inpatient consultations at Rady Children’s, UC San Diego, Hillcrest and Sharp Mary Birch Hospital. This is a one- or two-year program, depending on the candidate’s needs and educational background.
Fellows attend outpatient clinics at each of the five pediatric clinic sites, the main site being Rady Children’s. Fellows participate in procedures that take place under both local and general anesthesia, as well as laser and phototherapy. They are required to perform skin scrapings, swabbing and other forms of specimen collection for KOH preps, and various cultures. Fellows are responsible for following up on the status of all lab results, including serology, microbiology and pathology.
The pediatric dermatology fellowship is an ongoing dynamic learning process. Our five full-time pediatric dermatology attendings serve as mentors, but self-learning is a key component to a successful clinical education. Fellows are expected to read and survey the relevant medical literature when encountering new, unusual or rare cases. New information gained is shared with the attendings, colleagues and students. Fellows are also responsible for teaching the medical students and residents, both informally during daily clinics, as well as formally, in a lecture format, either in a morning session during a dermatology rotation, or a scheduled topic review for the UC San Diego residents in the departments of pediatrics and dermatology. These include a monthly slide show for the medical students, and text reviews for the dermatology residents.
There are defined educational activities for the fellows, which include: Neonatal Dermatology chapter reviews; Tuesday noon conference with the attendings to view and discuss difficult cases; Journal club, bimonthly, to present relevant articles in seven major dermatology and pediatric journals and weekly “Derm Jeopardy” slide reviews. Fellows are expected to attend Thursday morning grand rounds, which alternate sites between the UC San Diego, Hillcrest campus and the Navy campus.
Fellows are expected to participate and present patients at the Vascular Lesion and Birthmark Center, a monthly, multispecialty clinic, in which pediatric and adult patients with difficult vascular lesions are assessed by faculty which includes dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and interventional radiologists. If there is no senior resident in attendance, fellows are expected to present the cases. Fellows also attend the citywide San Diego Dermatology Conference, which is held monthly, rotating at different sites. When hosted by, fellows present interesting cases, as well as oversee the cases presented by the UC San Diego and Navy dermatology residents.
Our fellows are expected to present interesting cases at the yearly national American Academy of Dermatology meeting, as well as at the yearly National Society for Pediatric Dermatology meeting. Finally, fellows also have the opportunity and are encouraged to present at the UC San Diego-sponsored national meeting, Pediatric Dermatology for the Practitioner, a two-day, comprehensive course which alternates between the Rady Children’s and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia sites.
Fellows are integrally involved in research activities, which may be clinical, basic science or epidemiologic. Fellows are expected to present their research and cases at the various dermatology conferences, both local and national
There are also numerous ongoing clinical, pharmaceutical-based research projects within the Division. Fellows are expected to participate as Research Team members. They are involved in study design, the regulatory approval process (including IRB), patient recruitment, patient visits (assessment and documentation), as well as data review, data analysis and the preparation of publications, under the mentoring and guidance of faculty physicians.
Fellows will be evaluated on the ability to acquire and process clinical dermatology knowledge, as well as their contribution to the research enterprise. Emphasis is not placed on baseline knowledge, but on acquisition of knowledge and the ability to apply general principles of diagnosis and management to particular cases. Evaluation will include ability to interact with patients, peers and staff. Evaluations are official, and include biannual oral and written evaluations by the program director, in collaboration with the associate supervising faculty.