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Gastroenterology Fellowship

All Applications for the Parkview Medical Center Gastroenterology Fellowship Program shall be submitted through ERAS. Parkview Medical Center’s fellowship programs are all dually accredited and will be accepting both DO and MD applicants. However, regarding sponsorship, Parkview will only be considering J-1 visas with sponsorship through ECFMG on a case-by-case basis.

General Objectives of the Gastroenterology Fellowship Program

The Fellowship programs seeks to provide candidates with the opportunity to become consultant level subspecialists, qualified to function as independent resources for the communities in which they practice. The Fellowship program provides an intensive clinical exposure, an extensive didactic program, in which the Fellow is expected to actively participate, both as a student and a trainer, and an introduction to clinical research. While opportunities to participate in active research projects are available, this is not a research based fellowship program and candidates anticipating careers as physician-researchers are encouraged to seek training in programs more closely suited to their chosen career paths.

CLINICAL EXPERIENCE Fellows have formal instruction, clinical experience, and demonstrate competence in the evaluation and management of the following disorders:

  • Disease of the esophagus
  • Acid peptic disorders of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Motor disorders of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Disorders of nutrient assimilation
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases
  • Vascular disorders of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Gastrointestinal infections, including retroviral, mycotic, and parasitic infections
  • Gastrointestinal diseases with an immune basis
  • Gallstones and cholecystitis
  • Alcoholic liver diseases
  • Cholestatic syndromes
  • Drug-induced hepatic injury
  • Hepatobiliary neoplasms
  • Chronic liver disease
  • Gastrointestinal manifestations of HIV infections
  • Gastrointestinal neoplastic disease
  • Acute and chronic hepatitis
  • Biliary and pancreatic diseases
  • Women’s health issues in digestive diseases
  • Geriatric gastroenterology
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Cirrhosis and portal hypertension
  • Genetic/inherited disorders
  • Medical management of patients under surgical care for gastrointestinal disorders
  • Management of GI emergencies in the acutely ill patient

Internal Medicine sub specialties have, as their base, excellence in Internal Medicine. The Fellowship Program seeks to build on previously established knowledge and skills. The successful candidate will demonstrate competence in the broad field of Internal Medicine. Excessive exposure to Gastroenterology during an Internal Medicine Residency, thus limiting training in the other aspects of Internal Medicine does not optimally prepare a physician to specialize in these fields. The well-rounded candidate, demonstrating mastery of the primary specialty, will ultimately become a better consultant and physician. During the course of the Fellowship program, the trainee will spend a considerable amount of time on services other than Gastroenterology. These rotations are expected to broaden the knowledge and experience of the Fellow in such areas (i.e. Radiology, pathology, Surgery, Infectious Disease) which impact directly on patients with Gastroesophageal Illness.

The program emphasizes graduated responsibility with the Fellow gradually assuming responsibility under the supervision of both the rotation supervisor and the Program Director. It is expected that the trainee will interact closely with attending physicians and other consultants. The Fellow serves as an educator, mentor and supervisor for junior house-staff. The Fellow is also expected to serve as a resource and aid to the Nursing Staff of the Hospital. The Fellow will be assigned to medical staff committees in a nonvoting status with responsibilities commensurate with level of training and skill. Administrative responsibilities are assigned under the supervision of the Program Director. In order to function effectively in the medical environment, the Fellow must become aware of costs, cost containment efforts, and the medical-legal implications of clinical decisions.

Fellows will gain outpatient experience in the private offices of faculty members, typically once per week for an average of 4 hours.

The Fellow is encouraged to prepare an annual scientific paper upon a subject acceptable to the Program Director. The paper is to be suitable for publication, and, following approval by the Program Director and Director of Medical Education (DME) / Designated Institutional Official (DIO) should be considered for submission for publication to an appropriate peer-review journal. The paper may take the form of an independent research project, a case report and review of the literature or such other form as the Program Director and DME / DIO may approve. If the paper is accepted for presentation at a national conference, the program will pay for the day of the presentation and one travel day associated with the conference. There may a possibility of coordination with the basic science or translational research departments at CSU-Pueblo for research projects as well.

It is anticipated that the Fellow will maintain membership in the American College of Gastroenterology. During the course of the Fellowship program the Fellow is encouraged to attend at least one of the annual meetings of these organizations. The choice of meetings is subject to the approval of the Program Director. The goal is for the Fellow to gain exposure to the professional societies they will interact with for the remainder of their career.

The program will pay for each fellow to sit for the Gastroenterology Board Review Course at the end of their third year. Payment will include the cost of the course, airfare, room and board up to $2,000.00.

The Fellow is expected to gain competence in the clinical and ancillary evaluation of patients presenting with symptoms potentially arising from gastroesophageal illness. Listed below are procedural skills which should be acquired by the trainee during the course of the program. The Program Director, advised by the faculty members, serves as the final arbiter of competence and satisfactory completion of the goals and objectives of the training program.

Technical and other skills

1. Fellows have formal instruction, clinical experience, and must demonstrate competence in the performance of the following procedures. A skilled preceptor must be available to teach and supervise the fellow during these procedures, which must be documented in each fellow’s record, giving indications, outcomes, diagnoses, and supervisor. Assessment is based on a formal evaluation process.

  • Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) (fellows must perform a minimum of 130 supervised studies).
  • Esophageal dilation (fellows must perform a minimum of 20 supervised studies).
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy (fellows must perform a minimum of 30 supervised studies).
  • Colonoscopy with polypectomy (fellows must perform a minimum of 140 supervised colonoscopies and 30 supervised polypectomies).
  • Percutaneous liver biopsy (fellows must perform a minimum of 20 supervised procedures).
  • Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (fellows must perform a minimum of 15 supervised procedures).
  • Biopsy for the mucosa of the esophagus, stomach, small bowel, and colon.
  • Gastrointestinal motility studies and 24-hour pH monitoring.
  • Nonvariceal hemostasis, both upper and lower (fellows must perform 25 supervised cases, including 10 active bleeders).
  • Variceal hemostasis (fellows must perform a minimum of 20 supervised procedures).
  • Other diagnostic and therapeutic procedures utilizing enteral intubation.
  • Moderate and conscious sedation.

2. Fellows must have formal instruction and clinical experience in the interpretation of the following diagnostic and therapeutic techniques and procedures:

  • Gastric, pancreatic, and biliary secretory tests
  • Enteral and parenteral alimentation
  • Pancreatic needle biopsy
  • ERCP in all its diagnostic and therapeutic applications
  • Imaging of the digestive system, including:

- Ultrasound, including endoscopic ultrasound

- Computed tomography

- Magnetic resonance imaging

- Vascular radiography

- Contrast radiography

- Nuclear medicine

- Percutaneous cholangiography

Fellowship Curriculum

Clinical

  • 3 years clinical
  • Mandatory research time throughout all three  years, more heavily emphasized in first two years of fellowship
  • First year fellows will complete a ½ day continuity clinic twice per week. Second and third year fellows will complete one half day of clinic once per week. The days assigned will be dependent on whether they are in Clinic A, Clinic B, or Clinic C.

The fellowship training program is a full-time training program that must be of a minimum of 36 months in duration.

  • A minimum of 33 months must include supervised management of patients (clinical rotations)
  • A minimum of 12 months of training must be spent in any combination of the following
    • Inflammatory bowel disease, endoscopic ultrasound transplant medicine, motility, nutrition, hepatology, oncology, biliary tract disease, advanced endoscopy including ERCP. 
    • A minimum of five months must be spent in a hepatology rotation
    • A minimum of one month rotation must focus on a gastrointestinal motility disorders 

GI Conferences

Monday's Conferences:
  • Every 4th Monday of the month: Morbidity and Mortality conference at 0700. Lectures will be split between Pulmonary and Gastroenterology fellows in collaboration with the Internal Medicine Residents.

Tuesday's Lectures & Conferences: 

  • First, second, and third Tuesday of the block (7am): GI Lecture Series* details below
  • Fourth Tuesday of the block (7am): Pathology Conference

Wednesday's Conferences:

  • First Wednesday of Month: Medicine Grand Rounds (0700): Fellows will attend all grand rounds despite presenting or not presenting.  This will help to enrich their internal medicine background and keep them up-to-date on numerous topics.
  • Second, third and fourth Wednesday of the Block: GI – Mayo Board Review Videos (0700)

Thursday's Conferences:

  • First Thursday of the month (every other Thursday): Journal Club (0700)
  • Alternating with Journal Club: Case Conference/ Review (0700)

Friday's Conference:

  • DDSEP9 Q & A

Clinical Case Conference will be held every other Thursday, alternating with Journal Club, during which GI fellows present current or recent interesting clinical cases for discussion by the entire GI division about proper diagnostic evaluation and management.

Grand Rounds will be held monthly on the first Wednesday of the month at 7am, for faculty, fellows, and community gastroenterologists that cover broad areas of clinical gastroenterology.

Fellows Journal Club & Research Update To review pertinent GI articles recently published in the literature; to critically review all aspects of a published article. It is also a time for fellows to update the faculty on the progress of their research projects. Journal Club will be held on Thursdays, alternating with Clinical Case Conference.

Research Seminar is presentations by fellows, faculty, or invited speakers regarding GI basic or clinical research and will be done every four months.

GI Summer Clinical Lecture Faculty review clinical aspects of acute management of common GI diseases. This is an introductory clinical series that goes from July to September each year on Tuesdays at 7am.

Core Curriculum Lecture Series is where fellows learn in depth about basic GI pathophysiology and attain new non-textbook knowledge on focused GI topics in a seminar format through study of literature and input from an assigned expert in the field. Fellows learn how to critically appraise and present recent scientific literature of a focused topic. This follows the GI/Hepatology Summer Clinical Lecture Series and goes from October to June each year.

Ambulatory Clinic

Parkview Gastroenterology operates an ambulatory clinic that will be utilized for Fellowship training with continuity of care.

Parkview Gastroenterology 1600 N. Grand Avenue, Pueblo, CO 81003 Phone: 719-595-7680

The payer mix is 59.2% Medicare, 10% Medicaid, 29.4% HMO/PPO/3rd Party, and 1.5% Self Pay. The approximate annual volume for 2012 was 3,175 patients and the annual number of visits in 2012 was 21,289. The facility has sufficient space and patient volume to accommodate 2 fellows in a continuity clinic for one half day each week. There are opportunities to expand the clinical services and as Parkview provides care to a medically underserved population, it will not be difficult to expand the patient base as needed.

Faculty

Program Director

Charles Ruzkowski, MD

Dr. Chuck Ruzkowski joined the Medical Staff at Parkview Medical Center in 2004 and works with Parkview Gastroenterology. He completed his medical degree at Chicago Medical School in Chicago, IL, followed by residency training in Internal Medicine at Loyola University College/Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital, Hines, IL. Dr. Ruzkowski attended University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ where he completed his Fellowship training in Gastroenterology. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology and has over 15 years of endoscopic and practice experience.

Dr. Ruzkowski specializes in colon cancer screening, liver disease, and all gastrointestinal disorders, including reflux disease, irritable bowel syndrome and Celiac Sprue, and provides a wide variety of invasive and non-invasive treatments.

Attendings

Dr. Dionisio

Dr. Paula Dionisio, a Pueblo native and graduate of Central High School, graduated magna cum laude from the University of Notre Dame in 3 years before attending Georgetown University School of Medicine. Dr. Dionisio then completed her Internal Medicine Residency and Gastroenterology Fellowship at the esteemed Mayo Clinic.

Dr. Dionisio specializes in colon cancer screening, liver disease, and all gastrointestinal disorders, including reflux disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and Celiac Sprue, and provides a wide variety of non-invasive treatments.

Dr. Polintan

Dr. Lirio S. Polintan has been practicing in Pueblo since 1981. Dr. Polintan is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians; American College of Gastroenterology, and American Gastroenterological Association. He is also a member of the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

Dr. Polintan is experienced in diagnostic EGDs, colonoscopies, and therapeutic endoscopic procedures including ERCP, papillotomy, stent insertion, PEG-PEJ insertion, esophageal motility studies, and studies of liver disease.

Dr. Yang

Dr. Yang is the Parkview Gastroenterology Team’s newest addition, joining the team with 33 year of experience.  He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology.  He attended Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine for medical school and completed his residency at the University Of Illinois College Of Medicine. He received is gastroenterology fellowship training at Wayne State University.  He now specializes in celiac disease, acid reflux and GERD, Hepatitis C, IBS, ulcerative colitis, hemorrhoid, abdominal pain, and colonoscopy.

Dr. Calcagno

Dr. Calcagno bio coming soon. 

Dr. Goff

Dr. Goff travels to Parkview Medical Center to educate and train some of the senior fellows who are interested in advanced procedures. He earned his bachelor of science in biology from the University of California at Irvine where he graduated Summa Cum Laude with Honors. He also received his doctor of medicine degree from the same school. He went on to complete his internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Oregon Health Science Center in Portland, OR, and then completed his fellowship in Gastroenterology from the University of Colorado Health Science Center in Denver, CO.  Dr. Goff is currently a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and is one of only 300 physicians in the nation to have his Research Certification from the Academy of Pharmaceutical Physicians and Investigators (AAPI). He is the current Governor of the State of Colorado for the American College of Gastroenterology, sits on the Medical Executive Committee at St. Anthony Hospital, is a Board Member of Rocky Mountain Clinical Research and the American Liver Foundation and received the Peak of Excellence Award from the American Liver Foundation in 2012. Dr. Goff is also a member of the American College of Physicians, the American Gastroenterological Association, Alpha Omega Alpha, the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, the Gastrointestinal Research Group, and the American College of Gastroenterology.

Dr. Kulig

Dr. Kulig works with the GI fellows during their Hepatology Transplant Rotation during their 2nd and 3rd years of training at Presbyterian St. Luke’s Hospital in Denver, Colorado. Dr. Kulig was raised in west central Wisconsin and attended Carleton College prior to medical school at the University of Wisconsin. He and his wife moved to Portland, Oregon for internship and residency prior to coming to Denver for Fellowships. He completed two years of a clinical substance abuse fellowship prior to Gastroenterology and Hepatology Fellowship at the University of Colorado in Denver. Dr. Kulig then served as Director of Hepatology at the Denver VA Hospital from 2006-2009, prior to serving as the Director of the Porter Center for Liver Care from 2009-2015. He was recruited along with many colleagues to the Presbyterian/St. Luke's Transplant Center in 2016, where he is currently providing General and Transplant Hepatology care. Clark enjoys working in a multi-disciplinary environment to provide well-coordinated care to patients with complex and unique types of liver disease. Dr. Kulig leads the weekly Hepatobiliary Conference. He enjoys travelling, camping, camping and fishing with his wife and three children.

Fellows

First Year Fellows

Jaclyn FacklerJaclyn Fackler, DO

Hometown: Des Moines, IA
Undergraduate: St. Ambrose University
Medical School: Rocky Vista University
Residency: Henry Ford Macomb Hospital




Ben PottebaumBenjamin Pottebaum, DO

Hometown: Sioux City, IA
Undergraduate: Iowa State University
Medical School: Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine
Residency: Parkview Medical Center

Second Year  Fellows

Joe ChapmanJoseph Chapman, DO
  • Hometown: Roanoke, VA
  • Undergraduate: Virginia Tech University
  • Medical School: Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine
    Residency: University of Connecticut




Karolina SiniakowiczKarolina Siniakowicz, DO

Hometown: Bialystok, Poland
Medical School: Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine
Residency: Hackensack University Medical Center

Third Year Fellows

KaiserNeha Kaiser, DO

Hometown: DeKalb, IL
Undergraduate: Loyola University
Medical School: West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine
Residency: Mercy Medical Center




GiangJimmy Giang, DO

Hometown: Portland, OR
Undergraduate: University of Oregon
Medical School: Rocky Vista University
Residency: Parkview Medical Center

All Applications for the Parkview Medical Center Gastroenterology Fellowship Program shall be submitted through ERAS. Parkview Medical Center’s fellowship programs are all dually accredited and will be accepting both DO and MD applicants. However, regarding sponsorship, Parkview will only be considering J-1 visas with sponsorship through ECFMG on a case-by-case basis.

Charles Ruzkowski, MD

Dr. Ruzkowski

Gastroenterology Fellowship
Program Director

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400 West 16th Street, Pueblo, CO 81003

719.584.4000