Pediatric Cardiology

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 834–844 | Cite as

Pediatric Cardiology Boot Camp: Description and Evaluation of a Novel Intensive Training Program for Pediatric Cardiology Trainees

  • Scott R. Ceresnak
  • David M. Axelrod
  • Kara S. Motonaga
  • Emily R. Johnson
  • Catherine D. Krawczeski
Original Article


The transition from residency to subspecialty fellowship in a procedurally driven field such as pediatric cardiology is challenging for trainees. We describe and assess the educational value of a pediatric cardiology “boot camp” educational tool designed to help prepare trainees for cardiology fellowship. A two-day intensive training program was provided for pediatric cardiology fellows in July 2015 at a large fellowship training program. Hands-on experiences and simulations were provided in: anatomy, auscultation, echocardiography, catheterization, cardiovascular intensive care (CVICU), electrophysiology (EP), heart failure, and cardiac surgery. Knowledge-based exams as well as surveys were completed by each participant pre-training and post-training. Pre- and post-exam results were compared via paired t tests, and survey results were compared via Wilcoxon rank sum. A total of eight participants were included. After boot camp, there was a significant improvement between pre- and post-exam scores (PRE 54 ± 9 % vs. POST 85 ± 8 %; p ≤ 0.001). On pre-training survey, the most common concerns about starting fellowship included: CVICU emergencies, technical aspects of the catheterization/EP labs, using temporary and permanent pacemakers/implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICDs), and ECG interpretation. Comparing pre- and post-surveys, there was a statistically significant improvement in the participants comfort level in 33 of 36 (92 %) areas of assessment. All participants (8/8, 100 %) strongly agreed that the boot camp was a valuable learning experience and helped to alleviate anxieties about the start of fellowship. A pediatric cardiology boot camp experience at the start of cardiology fellowship can provide a strong foundation and serve as an educational springboard for pediatric cardiology fellows.


Pediatrics Pediatric cardiology Fellowship training Education 



Cardio-vascular intensive care unit


Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation


Implantable cardioverter–defibrillator


Supraventricular tachycardia


Ventricular assist device



The authors would like to thank the faculty instructors and other contributors from Stanford including: Sandra J. Feaster, Michelle N. Otis, Teresa A. Roman-Micek, Alexandra Buchanan, Lan N. Doan, Steve Roth, Jeffrey Feinstein, Anne Dubin, Sharon Chen, Chris Almond, Seth Hollander, Krista Jett, Christina Litzner, Dave Peng, Theresa Tacy, Alisa Arunamata, Doff McEhinney, Inger Olson, Alaina Kipps, Dan Murphy, Norman Silverman, Sushma Reddy, Mithras Maurille, George Yang, Jessica Haley, Renee Rodriguez, Louis Halamek, James Fann, and Frank Hanley. The authors would also like to thank the following individuals and corporations for their input and assistance including: Terumo Interventional Systems (Rigo Perea and Stephanie Mitcham), ZOLL Medical Corporation (Liz Niccum, Cherlynne Rogers, Susan O’Neal), Medtronic, Inc (Jason Daum, Dan Faria, Elodie Pouderoux), Philips Healthcare (Mark Beguhl), St. Jude Medical, Inc (Bryan Coin, Harlie Ferguson, Christine Feller).


Funding for this endeavor was provided by the generous support of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital-Stanford University, the Stanford Center for Immersive and Simulation-based Learning (CISL) at the Goodman Immersive Learning Center, and the Endowment for the Center for Advanced Pediatric and Perinatal Education (CAPE) at Stanford University.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Financial disclosure

The authors have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Scott R. Ceresnak
    • 1
  • David M. Axelrod
    • 1
  • Kara S. Motonaga
    • 1
  • Emily R. Johnson
    • 1
  • Catherine D. Krawczeski
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Pediatric Cardiology – Department of PediatricsStanford University – Lucile Packard Children’s HospitalPalo AltoUSA

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