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Physicians & Staff

What Does it Mean to Be Fellowship-Trained to You?

Fellowship training programs are reserved for the top doctoral graduates. Being offered a fellowship opportunity is a privilege that the best doctoral candidates are granted, and not every physician is offered the chance to participate. Fellowship training is part of the development process of becoming a specialist physician. While in fellowship, a physician shadows a specialist to learn a specific subspecialty. The physicians leading the fellowship programs are highly skilled and well respected in their field. It’s an invaluable experience learning alongside these professionals.
For some medical specialties, residency is the last step in training before the physician goes into medical practice. But for some specialties, there is one more step of sub-specialty training available to achieve added competency and experience.

How Long Does Fellowship Training Take?

When a physician is selected, they are committing to extra time and education. Earning a physician’s education requires a four-year undergraduate degree, followed by four years of medical school and a five-year residency program. A few candidates are chosen to participate in a one-year fellowship training after completing their residency program. These candidates then spend one year studying a specific branch of medicine in depth. The purpose is to sub-specialize and become an expert in a specific area of medicine or surgery. Fellowships will have vital elements of clinical and surgical experience as well as research. The focused and dynamic experiences acquired in a one-year fellowship usually take years to achieve in a private practice setting. Fellowship training provides an added level of expertise, insight and experience, which many patients find comforting. “Fellowship Trained” indicates the physician or surgeon has shown the highest level of dedication to their field and achieved the highest level of training.

For example, an orthopedic physician may finish a fellowship training program in hip and knee surgeries to become an expert. The fellowship physician may participate in hundreds of hip and knee surgeries within their training year to earn their subspecialty.

Once they begin practicing, many general physicians and surgeons will refer critical medical cases to specialists; since most specialists are more knowledgeable and can provide better expert care.
Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine is unique because all of our physicians are fellowship-trained. Each of our physicians has sub-specialty training in a specific area of Orthopedics. You can rest assured that our physicians have the expertise, knowledge, and experience and are considered a trusted resource in their chosen fields.

We are honored to provide this expert level of care to our patients in the community. So, if you need an Orthopedic Physician or Surgeon for yourself, a friend, family member, or coworker, consider if the provider is “Fellowship Trained”.