Radiation Oncology

Fellowship Program

INTRODUCTION
The Mays Cancer Center at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in San Antonio was founded in 1974, and is one of three leading academic research and treatment centers in Texas.
It has a long history with significant contributions to the cancer care, from drug discoveries by medical oncologists that are still used today, to being one of the first sites in the USA to deliver IMRT radiation treatments. We are a National Cancer Institute designated research center that moves laboratory discoveries into viable patient treatment options. We have been involved in the development of multiple cancer therapies now used worldwide. Our research scientists work with our clinical care physicians to develop cutting-edge therapies for our patients. We train the next generation of cancer researchers through post- doctoral, graduate and college programs and high school mentorships.

 

MISSION & VISION
The mission of the cancer center is to reduce the cancer burden in South Texas through the following practices: highest quality cancer care, groundbreaking research aimed at reducing the incidence and mortality of cancer, education of future cancer scientists and clinicians, and cancer prevention programs focused on our unique populations.

 

RADIATION ONCOLOGY
The Cancer Center at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center in San Antonio is the sole practice site for the University physicians and faculty. Radiation Oncology, Medical Oncology and Surgical Oncology are all housed at the cancer center. The department of Radiation Oncology has a faculty of five radiation oncologists and five medical physicists. There is also a staff force of five dosimetrists, thirteen therapists, four nurses and one linac engineer. Our department is the academic home of an accredited medical physics doctorate program and a professional doctorate program in medical physics, accredited medical physics and medical residency programs and an accredited dosimetry training program. There are a number of didactic courses that are offered at any given time, together with several scheduled teaching conferences such as tumor boards, new patient conferences, case studies and faculty and resident led didactic lectures and journal clubs. There are seven linac vaults, one HDR vault and two CT simulators, one of which has 4D simulation capabilities. We offer 3D and IMRT treatments with photon and electron beams as well as special treatment techniques such as Total Body Irradiation, Total Skin Irradiation, Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy and Stereotactic Radiosurgery. Image guidance (IGRT) is standard on all our treatments and surface imaging is available on one of the treatment vaults.


LOCATION
The Cancer Center is located in the medical center of the city of San Antonio which is north of the city center. San Antonio is a major city in south-central Texas with a rich colonial heritage and is the seventh most populous city in the USA. The Alamo, an 18th-century Spanish mission preserved as a museum, marks an infamous 1836 battle for Texan independence from Mexico. Following the San Antonio River, the miles-long River Walk is a landmark pedestrian promenade lined with cafes and shops. HemisFair Park’s 750-ft. Tower of the Americas overlooks the city.

 

STAVROS NIARCHOS FOUNDATION
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) is one of the world's leading private international philanthropic organizations, making grants in the areas of arts and culture, education, health and sports, and social welfare. SNF funds organizations and projects that are expected to achieve a broad, lasting and positive impact for society at large, and exhibit strong leadership and sound management. SNF also actively seeks to support projects that facilitate the formation of public-private partnerships as an effective means for serving public welfare.  Since 1996, SNF has committed more than $2.4 billion, through almost 4,000 grants to nonprofit organizations in 120 nations around the world—including a new SNF initiative to expand its support of the health sector in Greece with a series of infrastructure and education projects, expected to exceed $240 million.
The course is implemented as part of the SNF Radiotherapy Program, a large-scale grant in Greece, supported exclusively by the SNF, totaling €20 million, pertaining to the replacement of 10 obsolete linear accelerators in public hospitals around the country. The grant is also supporting the free maintenance of each linear accelerator for two years, plus training programs for hospital personnel to ensure optimal operation of the radiotherapy equipment.

 

OVERVIEW
The three week observership at the department of radiation oncology is designed to allow the visiting clinician to get a comprehensive understanding of our clinical practice including the roles of each team member in the patient care and the tools that we use to efficiently manage work flow and patient treatments.

 

LEARNING OBJECTIVES
■ Understand the workflow in a modern department that utilizes only electronic medical records
■ Understand the treatment planning process and patient selection criteria for 3D and IMRT
■ Understand the criteria used for target and normal tissue segmentation as well as plan evaluation
■ Understand the elements of a comprehensive QA and QC program including patient management and peer review process
The learning objectives will be met by observing new patient consultations, on treatment visits, and patient follow ups. Emphasis will be given to patient simulation and strategies used therein, followed by treatment planning and more specifically structure segmentation, treatment technique selection and plan evaluation. Quality Assurance is an integral component of treatment and patient safety. The attendees will participate in both patient specific pre-treatment QA as well as routine QC tests performed on the treatment units. Attendees will be asked to attend the new patient conferences where all the new patient plans are presented and discussed, as well as the didactic lectures offered by the faculty and the anatomy specific tumor boards.
In the beginning of the three week session, the attendees will have a two day orientation where they will rotate through all the patient encounter stations in the department, namely the nursing, simulator, therapy, dosimetry, medical physics and physicians. This will create an opportunity to meet our faculty and staff, and to appreciate how all our team members work together to ensure the best possible care for our patients.

 

TARGET AUDIENCE
Preference will be given to junior clinicians (physicians and medical physicists) employed by the Greek radiotherapy departments that participate in the SNF radiotherapy program.

 

APPLICATION PROCESS
Applicants must be practicing clinicians in Greece and must have completed their clinical training. Applicants must be fluent in English and eligible to travel to the USA and stay for a three-week period to complete the program. A formal application has to be submitted that will be reviewed by the selection committee. Application should include a curriculum vitae, two letters of recommendation, and a copy of the medical school diploma. A Skype interview will be arranged with each applicant.

 

PROGRAM COMPLETION
Fellows must complete the fellowship competencies to obtain a program completion certificate. Together with a course evaluation report, they will also be asked to write a personal statement on how they intend to use the knowledge they gain from this program to benefit their practice and the population of cancer patients they serve in their hospital. 

 

FELLOWSHIP DATES
2018: February, March, April and May

 

Click Here to apply.

 

For more information please contact:

Patricia Candia, PhD,
Academic Program Coordinator
Radiation Oncology-Division of Medical Physics
7979 Wurzbach Rd, MC 7889
San Antonio, TX 78229-4427
Phone: (210) 450-1718 Fax: (210) 450-1076
candia@uthscsa.edu