Medical Toxicology is recognized as a subspecialty by the Accrediting Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and is co-sponsored by the American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM), American Board of Preventive Medicine, and American Board of Pediatrics. It is a 24-month fellowship open to physicians who have completed a residency. Physicians whose primary residency is not in one of the sponsoring specialties are also eligible but would apply for the board exam through ABEM.
Our Medical Toxicology Fellowship was established in 1983 and was one of the first to be accredited by the ACGME in 2000. While the fellowship is sponsored by the University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix (UACOMP), the department offices are physically located at Banner - University Medical Center Phoenix (BUMCP). We manage patients at both BUMCP and Phoenix Children's Hospital (PCH). The fellowship is also affiliated with the Maricopa Medical Center Emergency Medicine residency and the Banner Poison and Drug Information Center.
Our program's strength is an emphasis on the bedside care of toxicology patients, admitting (or consulting on) over 1,300 cases annually, many of whom are in an intensive care unit setting. Consequently, prospective fellows should feel comfortable managing ICU and floor patients of all ages, although patients in the PICU are co-managed with the pediatric critical care team.
UACOMP also co-sponsors an ACGME-accredited Addiction Medicine fellowship with BUMCP and the Phoenix VA Hospital. Due to the significant overlap in patient populations, there is ample opportunity for Medical Toxicology fellows to gain experience in the care of substance use beyond the acute toxicity or withdrawal period. All of our providers have DEA X-waivers and routinely provide these services to our Toxicology patients.
Our service area includes Phoenix, the sixth-largest city in the United States, as well as much of rural Arizona, including several Native American reservations. As a result, fellows become comfortable managing a wide breadth of toxicology, including accidental ingestions, intentional overdoses, substance abuse and withdrawal, as well as a variety of envenomations (rattlesnake, scorpion, and Africanized honey bees). There is also a large didactic component and many opportunities to develop teaching and lecturing skills.
Our fellow positions are completely funded, meaning non-toxicology clinical work (e.g. ED shifts) is not required. Two or three fellow positions are available in alternate years, with start dates of July 1.
After graduation, our fellows have continued on to establish successful careers as clinicians, educators, and researchers. Several have started Medical Toxicology programs and fellowships at other institutions.
Read on to learn more about our program!