Our Program

The major goals of the Asheville Palliative Medicine Fellowship are:

  1. To train physicians in the knowledge, attitudes and skills unique to the effective practice of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.
  2. To model and develop a comprehensive, efficient and effective team approach to Hospice and Palliative Medicine.
  3. To provide support and guidance in the development of self-understanding and self-care skills in recognition of the significant stressors of providing care and caring at or near the end of life.
  4. To prepare our fellows to successfully achieve Board Certification and to pursue a career path that includes high quality professional practice in Hospice and Palliative Medical Care.

The training program integrates fellows into our strong clinical components as our core training sites. Our busy Palliative Care consult service is based in a busy 800-bed regional medical center. The Hospice Home Care program maintains a census of more than 180 patients and includes skilled nursing facilities, assisted living, and home patients with a wide variety of diagnoses from a varied geographic and socioeconomic spectrum. Solace, is our 27-bed Hospice Inpatient Unit which provides an environment for state of the art symptom management and end of life care. In each setting, fellows are a part of the interdisciplinary team, working together to provide the best care possible. Longitudinal experiences in Long-Term Care, Palliative Care Clinic, Community Palliative Care and Home Hospice complement and expand on block rotation experiences in these core areas.

Specialty experiences build upon and deepen knowledge and skills to include required rotations in Pediatrics, Interventional Pain Management, and Oncology. A wide range of electives are available for further exploration and education.

Our program recognizes that each of our fellows may choose a different career path on completion of the program. With that in mind, we have included a "Flex-Month" in the schedule where each fellow may choose to spend additional time with the Palliative Care Consultation Service, Hospice Home Care, and/or Inpatient Hospice Care, based on their personal career goals and educational need.

Under girding and supporting these clinical activities is a weekly half day of conferences and discussions ranging from core clinical and practice management topics, to self-care related discussions and a book club. Regular meetings with a designated bereavement counselor and chaplain reflect our commitment to the whole physician, self-care and quality of life.

Rotations

Sample Rotation Schedule
Orientation       Two Weeks
Palliative Care Consult Eight Weeks
Hospice Home Care Four Weeks
Inpatient Hospice Care Four Weeks
Pediatrics Two Weeks
Vacation Three Weeks
Palliative Care Consult Eight Weeks
Interventional Pain Mgmt Two Weeks
Hospice Home Care Four Weeks
Oncology Two Weeks
Inpatient Hospice Care Four Weeks
Flex Month* Four Weeks
Elective Four Weeks
*Flex month: Fellows may choose to spend additional time
with the Consult Service, Home Care, and/or Inpatient Care,
based on career goals and educational need.


Conferences

Fellows, Faculty and Staff meet weekly for one half day of conferences/workshops:

Hospice and Palliative Medicine Conferences: One or more per week
Comprehensive core clinical topics provided by core and community specialty faculty.

Journal Club/Critical Review: Every third week
An integrated series providing training and experience in critical review of the Hospice and Palliative Care medical literature.

Research Seminars: Every sixth week
Teaching seminars on research and academic skills combined with a practical project in an area of scholarly activity.

Topics in Self Care: Every sixth week
An exploration of the stresses and challenges of clinical practice in Hospice and Palliative medicine with a focus on developing strong and effective coping and self-care skills. This is co-taught by bereavement, chaplaincy and core faculty.

Practice Management/Program Administration: Every sixth week
Real world training on the core skills of effective billing, coding, documentation and schedule management, combined with training to be effective in the role of Medical Director of a Hospice and Palliative Care Program.

Communication Skills: Every sixth week
Effective communication is a critical skill in Palliative Medicine. Topics will include Running Family Meetings, Goals of Care Discussion, Giving Difficult News, and more.

Palliative Care Book Club: Every sixth week
A relaxed discussion with colleagues over snacks at the end of the day of a book or movie with a theme related to the end of life. This is designed as an enjoyable way to explore and reflect upon life and our work.

Application

Applications for the Asheville Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program may be found here. You may submit your application via mail to HPM Fellowship CarePartners Hospice 68 Sweeten Creek Road Asheville NC or via email. You may also apply to our program through the ERAS system.

Applicants must have completed an ACGME or AOA-accredited residency program in Anesthesiology, Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Neurology, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pediatrics, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Psychiatry, Radiation Oncology, or Surgery, have DEA certification and be eligible to obtain a license to practice medicine in North Carolina through the N.C. Medical Board.

Additionally, MAHEC requires a full copy of applicant’s medical school degree, current licensure information, 3-letters of recommendation including one from their residency program director, a personal statement, and an onsite interview in Asheville.

Questions regarding the application process should be directed to Twila Martin at 828-274-9567 ext 40061 or via tmartin@ashevillehpmfellowship.org.

International Medical Graduates

Special laws and regulations apply to international medical graduates who wish to enter the United States to undertake graduate medical education. MAHEC's policies and procedures regarding graduates of international medical schools comply with federal and state laws and regulations and MAHEC's commitment to graduate medical education.

Graduates of medical schools outside the United States and Canada must have a currently valid certificate from the Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG). Applicants must successfully pass both Step 1 (basic medical) and Step 2 (clinical knowledge) of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).

While MAHEC does not sponsor a visa, the international medical graduate applicant must also possess a current/valid visa option or other status governed by the US Immigration Regulations to participate in a GME program.

Finally, the North Carolina Medical Board requires that physicians who are graduates of schools that are not accredited by the LCME or the AOA (foreign medical schools) must be individually certified by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates, have successfully completed at least three years of accredited graduate medical training, and have passed the USMLE or its equivalent to be eligible for application for full licensure. An international medical graduate must complete all other application requirements required by MAHEC and the GME program.

Salary and Benefits

Salary: $53,500

Benefits:
Insurance
Professional liability insurance
Health insurance for fellow (family coverage optional at additional cost)
Term life insurance
Disability insurance
Licensure fee
North Carolina Medical License fee
DEA Registration fee
Vacation/Leave: Three weeks
Professional Education: $750 for CME related expenses including books, subscriptions and costs for attending professional meetings.
Salary and benefits are subject to annual adjustments.

Resident Manual

Resident Fellow Contract Letter of Agreement