Fellowship ProgramPulmonary Critical Care & Sleep Medicine


Our fellowship program takes great pride in our diverse fellow population. We acquire the best fellows from all over the globe and offer excellent care to the community that we serve. At UTMB we are committed to training high-quality, successful physicians. Our fellows maintain a balance between work and social activities. We promote camaraderie in our program, with frequent social activities. 

Applications must be submitted one year prior to the beginning of the fellowship. The Pulmonary & Critical Care Fellowship is an accredited training program (Program number 1564821112). We participate in the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) for Medicine Service® (SMS®). To submit rank order lists and determine our match candidates, we suggest that you contact and/or visit websites for ERAS or NRMP regarding application forms and procedures. We do not require a supplemental application.

Invitations for interviews will be sent to selected candidates to interview in September and early October. Interviewing will usually be completed by the end of October with the match in December. Applicants are selected on the basis of their preparedness, ability, aptitude, academic credentials, communication skills and personal qualities. There is no discrimination with regard to sex, race, age, religion, color, national origin, disability or veteran status. 

All applicants entering Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program must have completed an appropriate post-graduate clinical program accredited by the ACGME. A Texas Physician in Training Permit is required.

Required documents that should be submitted thru ERAS include:

For further information concerning the pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship program, please contact:

Leslie Elgin, PCCM Fellowship Program Coordinator
Phone: 409-772-1755
Fax: 409-772-3394
Email: Icelgin@utmb.edu

  • What do you think are your program’s attributes? 
    Diversity, mentorship and work-life balance.

    Diversity of patients regarding socioeconomic background, ethnicity, and exposures. At UTMB patients come from South and East Texas and as a port city, we see patients from all over the world who travel through the area. We have diverse residents and fellows.

    Mentorship. You will naturally establish a mentor based on your unique interests, goals, and personality. We do not assign mentors because its important for you to be paired with a mentor based on your needs. Often fellows find more than one mentor.

    Work-life balance is the key for our fellows’ resilience, well-being and to promote a life-long productive career. All of our fellows are married and the majority are raising a family. Galveston has an abundance of year-round activities as a tourist destination city and is family friendly. Additionally, we are within an hours’ drive to Houston – the 4th largest city in the nation. Houston offers everything for any interest including professional sporting events, theater, arts, and various leisure activities such as shopping, golf and any type of food you can imagine. 

    Our fellows enjoy several program sponsored events such as the incoming class meet and greet at “The Spot” for beers and burgers, the annual Holiday party at the Division Chief’s house, monthly coffee with the Chief, biannual international potluck at lunch, quarterly treats with the Program director, and the annual graduation party. At our program, fellows are more than just colleagues — they are close friends and often consider each other family.

    We know that when it’s time to work, we are ready to be our best – when we aren’t working it’s important to rest and recharge.

  • Are there opportunities to participate in off site and abroad rotations? 
    Yes. They will need to be program and GME approved. You will need to meet with the program coordinator to discuss the process for requesting an external rotation. This can take 6 weeks or more so will need to be planned well in advance for all program agreements and insurance coverage to be completed. 

  • Are there opportunities for teaching? 
    Absolutely! Our fellows have a minimum of 2 directed learning opportunities to engage in effective “residents as teacher” skills courses. There are a number of opportunities through the Academy of Master Teachers to attend other courses on how to become an educator.

  • Does the fellowship encourage its fellows to do research? If so, is there elective time to do it? Is publication required during training? 
    Scholarly activity with the pursuit of publication is expected during the 3 years of training. This can be research, QI, patient safety, reviews, and/or book chapters. Our site has past publications from our fellows’ projects and researchers in the division.

  • Are residents permitted or encouraged to attend regional or national medical conferences? Are there funds available for this?Fellows who have completed a research project are encouraged to submit their work wok to the annual ATS or CHEST conferences. Funding via a stipend for presenting their work is available. Usually this is $1500. Additionally, the program director nominates 1-2 fellows annually for each conference to attend on a scholarship. 

  • Where are the graduates of the program practicing right now? 
    We are proud of each of our graduates’ accomplishments. Our program is built on the premise that the success of our fellows is the most important metric of how our training has impacted them. Graduates practice all over the US in a variety of practice settings. We hear from graduates via social media, text, calls and reunite by hosting dinners at the annual ATS meeting. 

    See our webpage for listings of our past graduates from the fellowship program which lists their first job out of training. 

  • What is the patient population like?
    The majority of patients come from Texas and the surrounding states. As a tertiary care hospital, we see common pulmonary conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, pulmonary embolus as well as external specialty referrals for uncommon pulmonary conditions or unusual presentations of common disease. We also care for many outside institutions requesting transfers  for “higher level of care” in our ICUs. 

    In general, our patient population is complex with multiple comorbidity, making our fellows proficient at handling complex decisions. Fellows are also exposed to and treat rare diseases in nearly every field. Often, patients are referred to Mayo Clinic for evaluation by renowned experts, bringing complex cases.

    Ethnic diversity among patients is widely abundant, and underserved populations are encountered at all our inpatient and outpatient facilities.

  • What were the results of the last accreditation visit? 
    We are fully accredited through the ACGME and have not had any citations in the recent years (>10).

  • How much autonomy will I have?
    The intent of our Fellowship is to produce proficient, competent and leading physicians. Fellows are directly responsible for their patients, and there is ownership and accountability in caring for each patient.

    Our program relies on a team-based model to achieve these goals. On inpatient services, teams consist of interns and/or senior residents, a PCCM fellow and a faculty physician. The resident and fellow evaluate the patient and then formulates and implements care management plans with the supervision and support of faculty to provide top-level comprehensive care.

    In the continuity clinic setting, each fellow is responsible for their own patient panel, directing comprehensive, ongoing care with faculty supervision. The level of autonomy incrementally increases as fellows progress through training, and in the end, there is an exceptional balance of autonomy and independence, allowing our fellows the opportunity to grow into competent and independent physicians.

  • Do you anticipate any changes in the next three years? 
    The one constant at UTMB is that there will always be change! Our campus continues to undergo modernization, we have campuses in League City and Clear Lake which the pulmonary/critical care division will likely expand to cover in the future which offers a community private practice model v a tertiary care center academic model on main campus. The League City campus is expanding and may include more opportunity for outpatient clinics which will include more basic pulmonary care and cancer related pulmonary issues related to the care of our MD Anderson clinics located at our LCC location. Additionally, this may increase our advanced pulmonary procedures volume.

    From an institutional perspective, there are many areas of growth and development. See our site UTMB Health 2020 for more information on how UTMB approaches new horizons.

  • Can you tell me about your seminar and/or lecture series? 
    Conferences are held 3 times weekly (Tuesday, Thursday, Friday) for 1-2 hours each. They consist of: 
    -Problem based learning 
    -case conference
    -morbidity & mortality
    -ongoing research
    -board review lecture and/or questions
    -boot camp lecture series first 2 months
    -journal club

    Additionally, internal medicine grand rounds are held Thursday and Thoracic Multidisciplinary Tumor Board on Wednesday. 

  • Stability of program director, faculty, residents and staff.
    We feel the PCCM program at UTMB is one of the most successful programs at the institution. Feel free to peruse our PCCM faculty CVs and you will find a rich tradition of UTMB alumni here! As program director for the fellowship I have been here for over 20 years. The most junior faculty in the division have been at UTMB for >5 years and the most senior faculty have been here over 38 years! If you look around campus, you will note this is a common theme at UTMB. We love our program and what we can achieve together and hope you will too.

  • What do you look for in an applicant?
    We have a competitive program, but we also seek a diversity of interests, goals, and backgrounds. Faculty describe the following characteristics of fellows associated with their success: compassion and empathy, life-long learner, trustworthiness, consistent self-reflection. Our goal is to train the next generation of leaders in the field of pulmonary and critical care medicine. Your application should show a record of scholarship and leadership and you should be ready to build on that. If you know that your personal goal is to be an outstanding physician in pulmonary & critical care, we welcome your application and, if matched with us, will see to it that you obtain the tools you need to succeed.