Thomas Jefferson University

Observation Medicine Fellowship

The Thomas Jefferson University Department of Emergency Medicine is excited to offer a one year Observation Medicine Fellowship.  Our Observation Unit serves as not only the safety net for our Emergency Department but also our health system’s ‘tincture of time‘ and excitedly is becoming the cutting edge of acute healthcare here at Jefferson.  This fellowship is ideal for Emergency Medicine residency graduates who want to become content experts and leaders in the growing field of Observation Medicine. A rounded approach will allow the fellow to develop both the clinical and administrative skills needed to successfully develop and operationalize an observation unit, create an observation medicine curriculum, design and publish research and become a regional or national leader in this distinct field. 

Maria Aini, MD
Medical Director, Emergency Department & Clinical Decision Unit
Director, Observation Medicine Fellowship
Assistant Professor, Emergency Medicine

Observation Medicine Academic Expectations

Observation Best Practice

The observation fellow will focus on creating additional evidence based pathways above and beyond basic pathways that are complex, collaborative with other departments, and at the front-line of innovative observational care.  The fellow will function in the role of an assistant Clinical Decision Unit (CDU) director under the direct guidance of the associate medical director.  They will act as a liaison to the many departments that we interact with on a daily basis.  They will lead interdisciplinary team discussions to expedite top quality patient care.  This team consists of case managers, advanced practice providers (APPs), nurses, social workers, physicians, consultants.  The fellow will participate in Performance Improvement activities and initiatives specific to observation patients. 

Clinical Operations

The fellow will be mentored by the ED and CDU clinical operations leadership team as well as other leaders within the department of Emergency Medicine.  They will gain experience in leading project management, gain insight into the complicated health analytics of observational care as well as ED analytics.  They will gain the knowledge and experience to create business proposal for the development and scaling of observational services, unit and staffing design as well as resource optimization.

Education & Training

The fellow will be a content expert in all aspects of observation care.  This role will require having successful relationships with other departments across the institution. The Observation Medicine Fellow will attend national training conferences in observation medicine, as well as monthly fellowship didactic sessions. The fellow will in turn educate residents, APPs, faculty and staff on clinical pathways, patient selection, performance improvement, and clinical issues relevant to observation medicine. 


The fellow will choose a focus their area of expertise within observation medicine and will be paired with the appropriate mentor to further their repertoire.  This area could include areas for further research, transitions in care from an observation setting, health policy, telehealth and observation with many opportunities to publish in this historically under published arena.

Professional Development

The Fellow will be sponsored by the Department to attend an Observation Medicine conference.

The Fellow will be sponsored to attend one academic meeting (SAEM/ACEP) to present their research and participate in the Observation Medicine Interest Groups.


Applicants: Graduates of an ACGME-accredited EM Residency Program

Duration: 1 academic year (2 years with Masters)

Number of Fellows (2015/16): 1-2

Clinical Shifts: 16 clinical hours per week

Advanced Degree:  Optional

ACGME Accredited:  No

Start: July 1 preferably though mid year candidates can be considered

Salary & Benefits: Competitive salary with full benefits

*Fellow will have the choice between an advanced degree or a certificate program.

Dr. Christopher

Theodore A. Christopher, MD, FACEP
Professor and Chair, Department of Emergency Medicine

Maria Aini, MD

Maria Aini, MD
Director, Observation Medicine Fellowship

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