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Palo Alto Medical Foundation, El Camino Hospital Tapped as First West Coast Site for Interventional Pulmonology Fellowship Program

Mountain View, CA - March 13, 2014 - El Camino Hospital and Palo Alto Medical Foundation are collaborating with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Fellowship Program to be the first West Coast sites to offer interventional pulmonology fellowships for pulmonary fellows.

Interventional pulmonology (IP) is an emerging field within pulmonary medicine that focuses on the use of advanced diagnostic and therapeutic techniques to treat patients with lung cancer, airway disorders and pleural (lung) diseases.

Ganesh Krishna, MD, an interventional pulmonologist at Palo Alto Medical Foundation and El Camino Hospital, is the chair of the fellowship search and director of the fellowship program. The joint IP program is the leading program on the West Coast and one of only 15 nationwide providing diagnostic and therapeutic services and cutting-edge treatment in pulmonary medicine.

“Being selected to run this fellowship program represents a powerful step forward in our vision for our medical organizations,” said Dr. Krishna. “We have established an advanced program with high-quality, forward-thinking medical care. Being part of the national resident matching program puts Palo Alto Medical Foundation and El Camino Hospital on the national map of contemporary medical academic work.”

The National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) matches medical school students, residents and fellows with their preferred programs based on a rank order list. There are only 14 fellowship positions in IP available nationally. El Camino Hospital and Palo Alto Medical Foundation are the first to offer a program of this kind on the West Coast.

“The matching program is prestigious and competitive so fellowships in our field are very rare,” explained Dr. Krishna. “We are pleased to be the first IP fellowship training center on the West Coast and to help train future pulmonology experts.”

The first fellow is Eric Seeley, MD, from UCSF. He starts in mid-March and will work side-by-side with Dr. Krishna for one year. Already certified in critical care and pulmonology, Dr. Seeley will perform procedures and care for patients under Dr. Krishna’s supervision at El Camino Hospital and the Palo Alto Medical Foundation in Mountain View.

The program will accept one fellow each year through a national search after Dr. Seeley completes the program.

The collaborative fellowship program is an intensive one-year educational immersion involving outpatient and inpatient treatments, from diagnosis to a range of minimally invasive procedures. Upon completion of this interventional pulmonology fellowship, the physicians will be uniquely qualified to treat respiratory conditions with the most current techniques and minimally invasive technologies.

Dr. Krishna has trained and proctored other doctors in interventional pulmonology both nationally and internationally.

The Palo Alto Medical Foundation and El Camino Hospital interventional pulmonology program offers 26 different procedures, including bronchial thermoplasty and inReach electromagnetic navigation bronchoscopy. As part of providing optimal care, Palo Alto Medical Foundation and El Camino Hospital collaborate closely in the outpatient and inpatient settings respectively.

Currently, Dr. Krishna is also collaborating with Fogarty Clinical Research Inc. to conduct a clinical trial to evaluate the investigational use of the RePneu® (pronounced ‘RENEW’) Lung Volume Reduction Coil (LVRC) for patients experiencing symptoms of emphysema. This chronic, debilitating disease causes irreversible damage to delicate lung tissue, leading to shortness of breath and reduced capacity to manage activities of daily living, leading to diminished quality of life. Enrollees are still being sought. Other clinical trial sites include Mayo Clinic, Cedars-Sinai, Yale and Cleveland Clinic.

About El Camino Hospital
El Camino Hospital is an acute-care, 443-bed, nonprofit and locally governed organization with campuses in Mountain View and Los Gatos, Calif. In addition to state-of-the-art emergency departments, key medical specialties include heart and vascular, cancer care, urology, orthopedic and spine, genomic medicine, and the only Women’s Hospital in Northern California. The hospital is recognized as a national leader in the use of health information technology and wireless communications, and has been awarded the Gold Seal of Approval from The Joint Commission as a Primary Stroke Center as well as back-to-back ANCC Magnet Recognitions for Nursing Care.

About the Palo Alto Medical Foundation
The Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) for Health Care, Research and Education, is part of the Sutter Health network of care. Founded in 1930, PAMF is a not-for-profit health care organization that is a pioneer in the multispecialty group practice of medicine, health innovation and patient-centered care. PAMF's more than 1,200 affiliated physicians and 5,400 employees serve nearly 850,000 patients at its medical centers and clinics in Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties. The Palo Alto Medical Foundation is part of Sutter Health’s Peninsula Coastal Region, which also includes Mills-Peninsula Medical Center, Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center and Menlo Park Surgical Hospital. For more information about the Palo Alto Medical Foundation, please visit the PAMF website and blog, follow us on Twitter, and join us on Facebook and Google+.