UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Two-Year ACGME-Accredited Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship

The goal of the UPMC Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship is to provide excellent clinical training to the next generation of academic pediatric heart surgeons. The program focuses on treating children with congenital cardiac anomalies from the immediate local/regional referral area, as well as patients and families travelling from across the globe to receive the world-class care provided at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. The program's overarching mission - to marry the emphasis on providing outstanding clinical patient care with excellent clinical outcomes and the importance of the pursuit of meaningful scholarly, research, and academic endeavors - is echoed throughout the sponsoring institution of UPMC.

This fellowship program is a 24- month experience and is accredited by the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Program Aims

The program aims for the Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship include:

  • Provide robust and meaningful mentorship to trainees in all aspects of clinical training, both inside and outside the operating room and both before and after surgical intervention. This mentorship will be provided by the Program Director and Program Faculty.
  • Provide robust and meaningful administrative support for the fellow through a strong Program Coordinator and additional support staff.
  • Demonstrate commitment to diversity and inclusion within the trainee, faculty, provider, and staff of the Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship program.
  • Provide a robust didactic educational experience.
  • Provide ample resources for pursuit of scholarly activity including funding, lab facilities, protected time, and other resources.
  • Provide fellows protected time for wellness needs.
  • Provide fellows extensive formal and informal written 360-degree feedback from faculty, providers, peers, staff, and self.

Learning Objectives

Patient Care

Throughout the program, the fellow will gain experience in the basics of interacting and gathering information from the patient. Patient care knowledge will develop to include advanced operative skills and understanding, including wound closure, cannulation for cardiopulmonary bypass, and increased responsibility in complex cardiac repairs.

Medical Knowledge

During this two-year program, the fellow is expected to attain a foundation of knowledge regarding congenital cardiac surgery through conference and teaching round attendance, as well as the presentation of scholarly work.

Practice-Based Learning

Congenital cardiac surgery fellows are to actively participate in the evaluation of their patient care skills, as well as continually provide new ideas with a focus on improved service.

Interpersonal and Communication Skills

The fellows will demonstrate proficiency in communication and teamwork. The fellows in this program are expected to listen to the ideas of others and communicate effectively with colleagues in allied disciplines. They will also understand and demonstrate appropriate communication with parents, as well as age-appropriate methods of communicating with children.


Throughout this program, fellows will improve leadership skills and display a dedication to ethical principles pertaining to clinical care and patient sensitivity. They will demonstrate the ability to adapt and grow in a fast-paced, professional environment.

Systems-Based Practice

Fellows will provide efficient, high-quality care through partnership across other hospital disciplines and apply their knowledge of established guidelines and procedures to practice.

About Us

UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh is an acute-care teaching hospital with more than 300 beds located in the city’s Lawrenceville neighborhood. From rare diseases to cardiac care, UPMC Children’s offers a full range of advanced specialty care for infants, children, and adolescents, serving patients nationally and worldwide. It is home to the multi-disciplinary Heart Institute at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, in which pediatric cardiology, pediatric cardiothoracic surgery, pediatric cardiac anesthesia, pediatric critical care, pediatric cardiovascular nursing and technicians work in harmony daily.

This multi-disciplinary model has been widely studied and emulated and is considered the gold standard for the building of a Heart Institute across the United States. In 2022 – 2023, U.S. News and World Report ranked UPMC Children’s #3 in the nation in Pediatric Cardiology & Heart Surgery.

How to Apply to the Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship

Fellows apply and are accepted through the San Francisco Matching Program, www.sfmatch.org. Prior to appointment in the program, fellows must have successfully completed an accredited thoracic surgery training program. All required clinical education must be completed in an ACGME, ACGME-I, RCPSC, or CFPC accredited program.

Applicants must also have three excellent letters of recommendation and have passed USMLE parts 1, 2 and 3. The program will contact each applicant’s medical school and residency program to verify successful completion of that portion of their training.

Contact Us

For more information, contact:

Program Director: Victor O. Morell, MD
Program Coordinator: Patricia Fluhrer, MA