The Department of Urology at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga College of Medicine is proud to offer a 1-year advanced clinical training program in robotics and laparoscopy that is recognized by the Endourological Society. The goal of our program is to provide the fellow with extensive training in advanced robotic and laparoscopic surgery. The clinical training program has a focus on robotic urologic oncology, with exposure to a full breadth of robotic oncologic cases, including: radical prostatectomy, radical/partial nephrectomy, adrenalectomy, nephroureterectomy, and radical cystectomy with urinary diversion. The trainee will also be exposed to the newest techniques in robotic urologic reconstruction, including: buccal ureteroplasty, pyeloplasty, and ureteral reimplantation. Surgical volume is excellent, with over 250 robotic urologic procedures performed annually.
Applicants must have completed an ACGME accredited urology residency and be board-eligible/board-certified at the start of the 1-year program. The applicant must also be eligible for a full Tennessee medical license. The trainee is involved in all aspects of clinical care for patients undergoing robotic surgery, and will operate daily with one of the three attending physicians listed above. The trainee will also have clinical training responsibilities in the education of our urology residents. A goal of the training program is for the fellow to attain a comfort level with robotic/laparoscopic procedures that enables them to function in a teaching role, instructing residents in the basics of robotic/laparoscopic surgery.
The trainee is recognized by the Erlanger hospital system as an attending physician with the ability to admit patients, independently schedule and perform general (non-robotic/laparoscopic) surgical procedures. The trainee participates in the attending call rotation, with similar responsibilities as other members of the department. The trainee also supervises residents in our indigent care clinic, in which the urology residents see uninsured patients one morning per week
The Department of Urology is affiliated with the University of Tennessee College of Medicine and provides urologic care through Erlanger Medical System. Erlanger is the region’s only academic teaching hospital and level 1 trauma center, and is the major tertiary referral center for our region. Erlanger is also the only provider of indigent care in our region. The trainee in our advanced clinical training program in robotics and laparoscopy has clinical responsibilities at two Erlanger hospitals.
Erlanger Baroness Hospital is the flagship institution of Erlanger Medical Center and the site at which most of our major robotic and laparoscopic operations are performed. Typically, Drs. Singh and Waldorf each perform 4-6 major robotic procedures per week at the Baroness Hospital, where we have access to three DaVinci Xi robots (all with dual consoles). We are also one of the few institutions with access to a DaVinci SP robot system. We perform a full range of major robotic procedures at Erlanger Baroness, including the majority of our oncologic surgery.
Erlanger East Hospital is a comprehensive community hospital located east of downtown Chattanooga, and has recently upgraded to a DaVinci Xi robot. Drs. Waldorf and Okafor each typically perform 1-2 robotic procedures per week at Erlanger East.
Research and Academic Responsibilities:
Throughout the 1-year clinical training program, the trainee participates in clinical research and quality improvement projects. All clinical faculty are involved in clinical research, which is supported by the University of Tennessee College of Medicine. Funds are available to facilitate trainee travel to academic conferences, including the national AUA meeting, the World Congress of Endourology, the North American Robotic Urologic Symposium (NARUS), and the southeastern AUA sectional meeting.
Trainee participation in department academic conferences is also expected. Conferences include a weekly indications and morbidity and mortality conference, as well as monthly tumor board, journal club, and grand rounds.