Training in the Clinical Chemistry Postdoctoral Fellowship is divided into two phases:
The first phase consists of a nine-month introduction to laboratory systems and the various laboratories providing services. Through one-on-one interaction, lectures, case presentations and laboratory exercises, fellows learn the basic principles of analysis, the pathophysiology of disease and the application of clinical chemistry to diagnosis.
During this phase, trainees rotate through laboratories in clinical biochemistry, metabolic and hematologic biochemistry, clinical immunology, cell kinetics, and laboratory genetics. Studies focus on details of testing, methodology and the clinical correlation of laboratory tests. Fellows also are assigned to a project related to the development and implementation of a new laboratory test.
For the final 15 months, fellows focus on an approved translational research project. Trainees also assume increasing responsibility in the laboratories where they perform projects. Laboratory and patient problems are referred to fellows to help them prepare for their ultimate role as a hospital clinical laboratory director, assistant director, or developmental scientist or manager in a diagnostic-related company.
As part of this program, fellows are expected to present material at a variety of pathology and clinical conferences periodically, including the weekly on-call conference, bimonthly rounds and journal club.
Throughout the year, fellows attend formal presentations on laboratory management principles as part of the established teaching conferences that are given by expert staff members, which is a designed curriculum for leadership and management developed by the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Mayo Clinic.
Fellows teach pathology residents and trainees rotating on the clinical chemistry service.
To ensure that trainees acquire adequate proficiency and develop appropriate technical skills, performance is monitored carefully during the Clinical Chemistry Postdoctoral Fellowship. Fellows are evaluated by supervising faculty members at the completion of each rotation block during the first year, and quarterly during the second year. Faculty also formatively assess inpatient care, medical knowledge, professionalism, systems-based practice, practice-based learning and improvement, and interpersonal and communication skills.
The program director meets with fellows quarterly to review their evaluations and discuss professional growth. In addition, allied health staff and residents are asked to evaluate trainee performance periodically.
Fellows are able to view their evaluations electronically. Final written summative evaluations are completed for each fellow upon completion of the program. Fellows also evaluate the faculty to ensure that their educational needs are being met.