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Didactic conferences

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Neuro-Oncology Clinical Research Track

The wide range of didactic conferences offered at Texas Children’s Hospital are an integral part of our educational program. There are many opportunities to enhance one’s clinical and scientific knowledge by attending discussions and seminars led by experts in the field. Some of the core teaching conferences regularly attended by our Pediatric Hematology-Oncology fellows include:

Problem Case Conference (PCC). This multidisciplinary conference involves hematologists, oncologists, radiologists, surgeons, pathologists, radiation oncologists, nurses, research scientists, and trainees. The conference focuses on clinical and laboratory features of a spectrum of cases seen at our center. Fellows are assigned the major role in the presentation and moderation of case discussions. Included in PCC are the quarterly Morbidity, Mortality, and Improvement Conferences in which upper level fellows analyze a clinical case and identify specific areas for quality improvement within our service.

Neuro-Oncology Tumor Board.This multidisciplinary conference involves neuro-oncologists, neurologists, neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, radiologists, pathologists, and trainees. New diagnoses and issues regarding central and peripheral nervous system tumors seen by the Brain Tumor Program are discussed.

Hematology Conference. This multidisciplinary conference involves hematologists, hematopathology, transfusion medicine team, and trainees. Included in this weekly conference are a monthly Hematology Journal Club and regularly scheduled, disease-specific discussions in coagulation disorders, bone marrow failure, nutritional anemias, hemoglobinopathies, immune hematology, as well as general case presentations of challenging hematology cases.

Research Seminar. This lecture series is comprised of formal presentations by prominent clinical and laboratory researchers from many disciplines and areas of research including Hematology, Oncology, and Stem Cell Transplantation. Local, national, and international speakers are invited to present their work. At the end of their third year, senior fellows also present their research projects in this forum.

Hematopathology Conference. This is a monthly presentation by a hematopathologist designed to enhance skills in interpreting peripheral blood smears, bone marrow aspirates, and bone marrow biopsies.

Bone Marrow Transplant Case Conference. Bone marrow transplant (BMT) candidates and current patients are presented by the fellows on the BMT inpatient services at Texas Children's Hospital and Houston Methodist Hospital followed by a discussion with the faculty from both institutions. The fellows also give formal presentations on selected topics. These presentations are generally case-based with an overview of the relevant recent literature. In addition, international and local faculty members are invited to present their transplant-related research.

Foundations of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology (FoPHO). The FoPHO lecture series is a longitudinal curriculum directed specifically toward the ongoing education of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology fellows at Texas Children’s Hospital. The goal of FoPHO is to provide fellows with practical clinical knowledge necessary for independent practice, high-yield board review material, and a discussion of key literature in the field. This biweekly lecture series is led by a steering committee of upper level fellows who invite faculty speakers and participate in curriculum development and program evaluation.

Genomics Tumor Board. This multidisciplinary conference presents pediatric hematology-oncology cases with clinically significant (therapeutic, prognostic, and diagnostic) molecular findings in the tumor and/or germline identified through advanced sequencing platforms. Each case is organized into 1) clinical and anatomic pathology review, 2) description of molecular findings, and 3) clinical interpretation of significant molecular results. Spotlights on key molecular concepts and/or relevant genetic conditions are also incorporated. Each meeting aims to provide a working and educational experience for staff and trainees from Pediatric Oncology, Genetics, Genetic Counseling, Molecular Pathology, Anatomic Pathology, and Surgery.

Solid Tumor Scan Rounds. This multidisciplinary conference involves oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists, radiologists and trainees. New diagnoses and issues regarding management of established patients are discussed at this weekly conference.

Reflective Practice and Leadership. This twice-monthly seminar, required for first-year fellows, and optional thereafter, focuses on reflective practice and leadership. Fellows are encouraged to discuss challenging circumstances they encounter in their care-giving role. The curriculum includes diverse topics such as difficulty in dealing with a dying patient, the complexities of leading a health care team, and the strain of balancing the family demands with the commitments of an intense academic training program. Selected senior faculty facilitate discussions, frame thought-provoking questions, and may, at times, relate their own experiences as well. This method enhances fellows’ understanding of these complex issues and broadens their experience base through input from colleagues and mentors. There is a systematic effort to help fellows develop skills in analyzing situations and translating reflection into effective action as leaders in academic medicine. Learn more

Journal Clubs. Fellows present and evaluate recent scientific publications in journal clubs that focus on the areas of solid tumors, hematology, and other areas relevant to the research.

Fellows College. Fellows’ College is a centralized program that provides a common curriculum for all pediatric subspecialty fellows in ACGME competencies and additional professional development. All Pediatric subspecialty fellows at BCM/TCH will be well-rounded professionals who serve as models in communication, education, scholarship, quality improvement/safety, and career success. The Fellows College provides a community of learning and collaboration among pediatric subspecialty fellows, faculty, and subspecialty programs by providing fellows with a breadth of educational offerings for achieving personal and professional growth. Learn more