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Fellow in Training Resources

ACC Fellow in Training Section

Be sure to visit the ACC Fellow in Training Section for resources specifically designed for Fellows in Training.

Transitioning From Cardiovascular Fellowship to Independent Practice

American College of Cardiology (ACC) Oklahoma Chapter 2019 Annual  Scientific Meeting - University of Oklahoma College of Medicine -  Continuing Education (CE) - American College of Cardiology (ACC) Oklahoma  Chapter 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting

Chittur A. Sivaram, M.D. F.A.C.C., Professor of Medicine, University of Oklahoma
Member of the OK ACC Chapter Council
Oklahoma City, OK

The transition from cardiovascular fellowship to independent practice (either in the private sector or academic sector) is fraught with many stresses for Fellows-In-Training (FIT). While individual experiences involving this transition remain unique, there are many common facts that the FIT group needs to be familiar with. The Chapter Council of Oklahoma Chapter of American College of Cardiology (OK ACC) is very cognizant of the FIT needs regarding this significant professional milestone and remains highly supportive. Fortunately, there are many high value resources that exist on the ACC website that can be accessed by the FIT group. In this series of publications on the OK ACC webpage, we plan to highlight such resources (articles, webinars and documents) with our own commentaries throughout the year. We hope this step will not only help the FITs in our state, but also stimulate discussion from the OK ACC membership. We would like the discussion to help answer questions that are unique to cardiovascular practice and patient care in our state.

Our inaugural piece is based on a webinar (Practice Made Perfect: Physician Compensation), released on August 6th 2018, featuring Ms. Cathy Biga, R.N., F.A.C.C.

Questions about how best to engage in contract negotiation are always on the minds of FITs. Most of the resources on this topics are usually provided by lawyers, who are universally involved in the final steps of the review contracts. However, most FITs may not be aware of the details of how the compensation package is designed and how value is placed on each component of the services the cardiologist provides. In this excellent podcast on Physician Compensation, Ms. Biga explains the behind the scene processes that need to be understood by the FIT seeking a position. The components of the compensation package such as base bay, call pay, benefits (and how the benefits would be payed for), disability and malpractice insurance (including who pays for them), pension plans, productivity-based compensation and value for administrative position are lucidly covered in this 20-minute-long podcast. For example, it is very likely that many FITs are unaware that about 30% of the compensation is for taking calls! This would mean that by not taking calls and a smaller number of calls results in a reduced compensation package. Ms. Biga also touches upon the concept of work RVUs (wRVU) versus time value units (tRVU). Even though this webinar was released in 2018, most of the basic tenets in the webinar are still valid in 2021. Enjoy the webinar, let us know what you think at


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