Since 1972, the Pediatric Hematology & Oncology Fellowship program has trained physicians to serve as outstanding pediatric hematology/oncology faculty in the Department of Defense. Graduates have assumed senior clinical, academic, and administrative roles for their respective services, and have been associated with internationally-acclaimed, ground-breaking research related to the care of children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer and blood disorders.
The Pediatric Hematology & Oncology fellowship training program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and sponsored by the National Capital Consortium (NCC) – an ongoing institutional entity formed by the collaboration of the major Medical Treatment Facilities in the National Capital Area and the F. Edward Hébert School of Medicine of the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USUHS). The fellowship program exists in affiliation with the NCC’s tri-service Pediatric residency program at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) in Bethesda, MD, and is based within the Departments of Pediatrics at WRNMMC and USUHS.
A unique aspect of the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology program is its inclusion in the John P. Murtha Cancer Center (MCC) at WRNMMC, the only Department of Defense designated Cancer Center of Excellence. Pediatric Hematology/Oncology is a requirement for this world-class institution as it seeks to fulfill requirements for National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation as a Comprehensive Cancer Center. Because of geographic proximity, MCC has a special collaborative relationship with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which strengthens the clinical and research activities of all three institutions: the NIH, WRNMMC, and USUHS.
The fellowship consists of three years of post-graduate medical education, and includes both clinical and research experiences.
The fellowship program’s clinical experiences occur mainly at the NCC’s primary affiliated hospital: WRNMMC. Other locations in the National Capital Region include Fort Belvoir Community Hospital (FBCH), Fort Belvoir, VA, and, for specific rotations, Children's National Medical Center (CNMC), Washington, DC, and Inova Fairfax Children's Hospital (IFCH), Fairfax, VA.
Research opportunities are available at USUHS and through the Murtha Cancer Center (MCC), as well as other federal agencies to include the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR). The diversity of clinical and scholarly experience is designed to produce an exceptional academic hematologist/oncologist ready to fulfill the unique requirements of military and government practice.
The Pediatric Hematology & Oncology clinical service is based at WRNMMC and is a separate, free-standing section within the Department of Pediatrics and the MCC. Full-time pediatric hematologists-oncologists are based at WRNMMC, and supplemented by pediatric hematologists-oncologists and research scientists at USUHS or assigned at other sites in the National Capital Area.
Approximately one-third of the curriculum is devoted to clinical training, with the remaining time devoted to study of ancillary specialty areas and research activities. There is a major clinical requirement in the first year, including required rotations in a variety of subspecialty areas such as blood bank and transfusion medicine, pathology, and radiation oncology, four weeks dedicated to inpatient hematology consults (CNMC), and eight weeks spent in a community-based pediatric hematology-oncology (IFCH).
While the second and third years are mainly devoted to research, there are additional clinical experiences each to include one rotation each year on the blood and marrow transplantation service at CNMC and ward and junior attending rotations at WRNMMC. Continuity patients and clinic at WRNMMC and FBCH are maintained throughout. The fellow routinely will participate in the supervision of the management of hospitalized pediatric hematology/oncology patients through daily contact with the residents and students on the ward team; make ward rounds with the pediatric hematology/oncology staff; participate in general pediatric hematology/oncology and multi-disciplinary clinics (e.g., long-term follow-up, sickle cell); and teach pediatric residents and medical students through informal teaching rounds and prepared conferences.
Regular conferences are held throughout the week to focus on, and promote, individual scholarship. Patient conference and didactic sessions are held weekly, while two joint tumor boards are held bi-weekly: one with the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium (based at CNMC), the other with the Uniformed Services Oncology Consortium. Formal didactics, Journal club, and Board Review sessions are held monthly. Fellows and staff also have the opportunity to attend the educational and research conferences at USUHS and the NIH. In addition, all fellows participate in the Joint Core Pediatric Fellowship Curriculum. The fellowship program benefits from the clinical and academic synergy of four other Pediatric Subspecialty fellowships that are part of the NCC, as well as a full representation of faculty from Pediatric and Pediatric Surgical subspecialties. All fellows are encouraged to attend and present at national meetings.
The combined NCC pediatric subspecialty fellowships are founded among a rich scientific research community. To ensure success in research training, the majority of the second and third years of the fellowship have an emphasis on research. Both clinical and basic sciences are available for study.
Opportunities for clinical research are provided through the outpatient clinics and inpatient services at WRNMMC, the MCC, the Joint Pathology Center (JPC - formerly known as AFIP: the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology), the WRAIR, and the NIH. In addition, the USUHS Department of Pediatrics has several faculty mentors skilled in clinical research in the areas of observational, outcomes & comparative effectiveness, and health services research. WRNMMC is a full member of the Children's Oncology Group. Fellows performing clinical research will have the opportunity to complete requirements for the MPH degree at USUHS.
Opportunities for translational and/or basic science research are available through the USUHS, the MCC, the NIH, the WRAIR, and the JPC. Specific Pediatric Hematology/Oncology-related basic science research opportunities at USUHS include innovative translational projects in the molecular biology of neuroblastoma, leukemia, and thyroid cancer. The basic science laboratories include 2000 square feet of space at USUHS; additional space is available through the WRNMMC Department of Research Programs (DRP). These laboratories are well equipped for animal studies, general biochemistry, cell culture, and molecular biology. Extractions of RNA and DNA, Northern, Western, and Southern blotting and polymerase chain reaction analysis are performed. Gene synthesizers, automated nucleic acid sequencers, and protein sequencing are also available. Research Administration provides research review services, computerized data analysis, statistical support, and publication pre-review and approval. Funding and education opportunities are available through the USUHS Office of Research and the WRNMMC DRP. This facilitates flexibility in choosing a high impact fellowship research project and providing the experienced mentoring required for success.
Additional information for the specialty can be found on the Council of Pediatric Subspecialties website
The fellows gain invaluable military experience and further develop excellence through their training in the program. All elements of the military-unique curriculum of the Department of Pediatrics are strongly encouraged including, but not limited to, participation in the annual conferences on Radiation Biology & Medical Effects of Ionizing Radiation, Medical Management of Chemical and Biological Casualties, Military Medical Ethics, and completion of the Military Medical Humanitarian Assistance Course sponsored by USUHS.
The program provides training in unique military aspects of the care of dependent children with chronic disease, to include navigating military systems of care, and unique concerns for the child with a deployed active duty family member. The military pediatric hematologist/oncologist responds to consults from a wide range of geographic areas, including OCONUS. The program provides specialized training in responding to these consults, within the context of the inherent capabilities of the outlying facilities. The program is designed to graduate competent, caring pediatric hematologist/oncologists who pursue careers as physician-educators and/or academicians and are prepared to become future leaders in the military pediatric and medical community.
Eligibility and Application Process
Active duty in one of the Uniformed Services of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, or Public Health Service) is required for applicants. Applicants must have completed, or anticipate successful completion of, a pediatric residency, including at least one year of pediatric internship and two years of pediatric residency, and be either board- certified or eligible to sit for the certifying examination in general pediatrics (with a high likelihood of passing the examination).
Information on incurred obligations, pay, and allowances may be obtained from the Office of Graduate Medical Education. Applicants must be sponsored by, and apply through, the Graduate Medical Education office of their respective branch of service for postdoctoral training. Requests for training should list the NCC Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program at USUHS as their site of choice. Application deadlines are usually in September and are determined by the individual services.
Where feasible, applicants are encouraged to visit the USUHS and WRNMMC facilities, and arrange personal interviews with faculty members. If a visit is not possible, applicants should contact the Program Director and submit a current CV and letter of intent.
Program Director: Anne B. Warwick, MD, MPH; COL, MC, USA
Associate Program Director: Allen I. Stering, MD; LtCol, USAF, MC
Additional Program Faculty
Gary Crouch, MD, MHSA; Col (Ret.), USAF, MC; Vice Chair of Pediatrics, USUHS
Kip Hartman, MD; COL (Ret.), MC, USA
Kenneth Lieuw, MD, PhD; COL, MC, USA
Thomas Newton, MD; Col, USAF, MC; Chief of Pediatrics, WRNMMC
Dina Parekh, MD; LTC, MC, USA; Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Service Chief, WRNMMC
Wanda Salzer, MD; Col, USAF, MC; Director, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, USAMRMC
Margret Merino, MD; COL (Ret), MC, USA; FDA
Dennis Du, PhD; USUHS, Department of Pediatrics; Research Faculty
Additional information, application instructions and program requirements are available through:
Anne B. Warwick, MD, MPH, COL, MC, USA
Associate Professor, Pediatrics
Program Director, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship
F. Edward Hébert School of Medicine - "America's Medical School"
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
4301 Jones Bridge Road
Bethesda, MD 20814
USU Department Fax: (301) 295-3138
WRNMMC Clinic Phone: (301) 400-1663/1664/1665
WRNMMC Clinic Fax: (301) 400-1662