The Blood Banking and Transfusion Medicine Fellowship is a one-year accredited program designed to develop in-depth skills in all aspects of transfusion medicine. The graduate will be qualified to act as medical director in any blood banking/transfusion medicine setting, from a large and diversified transfusion service in an academic medical center to a community blood bank. Program applicants must be board certified or eligible in clinical pathology, anatomic pathology/clinical pathology, hematology or another relevant specialty.
The Blood Banking and Transfusion Medicine Fellowship received initial accreditation by the American Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) on June 12, 1979.
Fellows receive training in all facets of modern transfusion medicine, including serological evaluations, patient blood management, transfusion practices, therapeutic apheresis, peripheral blood stem cell collection and cryopreservation, blood collection, donor infectious disease testing, coagulation work-ups, and HLA. Direct patient care is emphasized through daily transfusion medicine rounds. Fellows consult on difficult transfusion workups, investigate transfusion reactions and manage stem cell collections and therapeutic apheresis procedures.
Approximately 80,000 units of blood and components are transfused annually at Barnes Jewish Hospital. The transfusion service collaborates closely with clinical teams, managing the transfusion support of patients with Sickle Cell disease, trauma, and recipients of solid organ and bone marrow/stem cell transplants. Experience in blood center operation comes from visits to the regional blood center and didactics provided by their medical director. Fellows become familiar with blood processing into individual components, as well as various aspects of blood preservation and long-term storage. They develop skills in the administrative management of the blood bank, including personnel issues, developing standard operating procedures and quality control, improvement and assurance. Fellows participate actively in teaching at all levels including laboratory technicians, medical students and residents.
An important aspect of the clinical training program is supervised clinical or laboratory research. Fellows conduct a relevant literature review, prepare a research proposal and collect data – ultimately preparing a report for presentation and possible publication.
The blood bank of Barnes-Jewish Hospital, under the medical directorship of the Program Director, provides the basic setting for the educational training. In addition, the fellow rotates through St. Louis Children’s Hospital to gain expertise in pediatric transfusion medicine. There are six faculty members dedicated to training all aspects of transfusion medicine The overall transfusion medicine space includes areas devoted to compatibility testing, component processing, a reference laboratory, cryopreservation laboratory, and a records/administration area.
The Apheresis Center located in the Center for Advanced medicine adjacent to the Barnes-Jewish Hospital provides experience in therapeutic and blood stem cell collections in outpatient and inpatient settings. The unit has several pheresis machines, and collects peripheral blood stem cell (autologous and allogeneic), and performs therapeutic pheresis, including photopheresis on outpatients and inpatients. These procedures are under the medical supervision of fellows, three nurse practitioners and transfusion medicine faculty.
Additional space and facilities are available through the Division of Laboratory Medicine, which provides office space for fellows, multiple teaching classrooms, audiovisual equipment and a specialized clinical pathology medical library in the fellows’ office area.
Applications for the 2024-2025 academic year will be available April 1, 2022. Please apply at fellowships.path.wustl.edu.
The positions for the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 academic years have been filled.
Suzanne R. Thibodeaux, MD, PhD
Program Director, Blood Banking & Transfusion Medicine Fellowship
Washington University School of Medicine
660 South Euclid Avenue, Campus Box 8118
St. Louis, MO 63110
For general questions, contact Justavian Tillman at email@example.com.
Justavian Tillman, Ed.D.
Manager, Educational Programs