UCI-CHOC Pediatric Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program

The University of California, Irvine and CHOC will accept applications through ERAS for the UCI/CHOC pediatric critical care fellowship program on July 19, 2023 for fellowship positions to start July 1, 2024.

CHOC has a long history of training superb pediatric critical care fellows first through its 20+ year history with Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and now with its academic affiliation with UC Irvine, established in 2019.

With a 30-bed Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) and a 12-bed Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) that jointly has over 2,000 admissions per year, CHOC can provide pediatric critical care fellows with a broad range of clinical exposure.

According to Virtual Pediatric Systems, LLC (VPS), a national collaborative of over 200 ICUs, when compared to a cohort of 21 other similar PICUs, the CHOC PICU had:

  • A similar Pediatric Index of Mortality 3 (PIM3) standardized mortality ratio.
  • A statistically significantly lower Standardized Length of Stay Ratio.
  • A similar percentage of unscheduled readmissions within 24 hours.

(The cohort included those PICUs (like CHOC’s) which are associated with a medical university, have a fellowship training program, have 24/7 attending coverage, are in a primary accredited pediatric teaching hospital and have an accredited pediatric residency program.)

Learn more about the fellowship program

Dr. Juliette Hunt, CHOC critical care specialist and fellowship program director, explains more about the fellowship program.

Watch a virtual tour of CHOC Hospital

Contact Us

UCI/CHOC Pediatric Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program
Division of Critical Care
1201 W. La Veta Ave.
Orange, CA 92868
(714) 509-4976 Phone
(714) 509-4072 Fax

Evelyn Martinez-Cruz
Program Coordinator
(714) 509-4976

Program Leadership

Juliette Hunt, MD
Fellowship Program Director

Robert B. Kelly, MD
Associate Program Director
Director of Research and Academics
Associate Division Chief, Critical Care

Jason Knight, MD
Division Chief, Critical Care

About the Program

The pediatric critical care fellowship program aims to prepare fellow physicians for careers as leaders in clinical and academic medicine in a supportive, rigorous and collegial atmosphere.

CHOC had previously been the primary clinical site for the UCLA Harbor/CHOC pediatric critical care fellowship program for over two decades. In 2019, UCI and CHOC launched an affiliation as a separate pediatric critical care medicine fellowship accredited by the ACGME. The UCI/CHOC pediatric critical care is now thriving with a full complement of fellows and proudly graduated it’s first class of PICU intensivists in June 2023.

CHOC PICU faculty and staff are heavily involved in all aspects of the trainees’ clinical and research experiences. CHOC faculty are known for their teaching, clinical and research efforts nationally.

The UCI/CHOC Children’s fellows receive a well-rounded and complete experience with core rotations in CHOC’s PICU and CVICU, as well as the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ cardiothoracic intensive care unit.

In addition to the core rotation in these ICUs, the UCI/CHOC pediatric critical care fellowship program offers fellows the following unique experiences:

  1. CHOC has a very experienced and successful vascular access team, skilled in the placement of PICCs, peripheral IV lines and arterial lines using ultrasound. This team has experience teaching fellow physicians how to successfully use ultrasound for vascular access. The program includes a two-week rotation in the fellow physician’s first year of training.
  2. CHOC has an active telemedicine program and a very busy air and ground inter-facility transport program. These programs allow the faculty and fellows to communicate visually and audibly with multiple hospitals in the community to help guide the care of critically ill children at their sites. The fellows will be involved in telemedicine consultations during their ICU service months, providing guidance for the management of critically ill children under the supervision of the critical care faculty. The fellows will also accompany the transport team for critical care transports.
  3. CHOC has an active Innovation Institute. The Sharon Disney Lund Medical Intelligence and Innovation Institute (Mi4) at CHOC Children’s is a unique and first-of-its-kind institute that creates, focuses and executes projects in the areas of intelligence and innovation in pediatric medicine. These two interrelated disciplines, extremely limited in development in the pediatric realm, hold great promise to change the trajectory of pediatric care around the world. Mi4 aims to foster robust developments in artificial intelligence methodologies, as well as innovative advances in emerging areas such as genomic medicine, regenerative medicine, robotics, nanotechnology and medical applications/devices. Mi4 is dedicated to empowering data intelligence and medical innovation at CHOC and driving innovation leadership in the international pediatrics community. Fellow physicians in our program will be exposed to Mi4 and have the opportunity to partake in an innovation project during their training if they choose. Learn more about the Mi4 here.
  4. UCI Medical Center, located five minutes from CHOC Children’s Hospital, continues to be a regional referral center for pediatric burn patients. CHOC’s critical care faculty provides critical care consultation to the burn team at UCI and provides procedural sedation for these patients. The fellow physicians will have the option to accompany the critical care faculty during their first year of training to allow exposure to pediatric burn patients and to gain experience with procedural sedation.
  5. The fellows will also have access to the UC Irvine School of Medicine Medical Education Simulation Center. This is a 3,000-square-foot state-of-the-art medical simulation center that provides telemedicine and simulation-based educational programs. The Center has a full-scale operating room, an emergency room trauma bay, and a critical care unit to be used for simulation. CHOC is also in the planning phase of constructing an in-situ simulation suite within the hospital. A member of CHOC’s critical care faculty will be the director of this simulation center, and we plan to utilize this center as an added educational resource for fellow physicians once constructed.

Training in research and completion of a scholarly project is an ACGME requirement and will be expected of each fellow. Fellows will have 16 months of protected time over the course of their 3 years of training to complete their project. In line with ACGME requirements, each fellow physician will have a Scholarly Oversight Committee that will help guide fellow physicians and monitor progress on research projects.

Research mentors are available at both UCI and CHOC, both in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine and/or in collaboration with other clinicians and scientists. Fellows will be expected to present their research at an appropriate conference and/or submit their work for publication prior to the completion of their training.

As part of their training in research, the fellow will be expected to gain experience in study design, conducting hypothesis-driven research, laboratory methodology, statistical analysis, IRB preparation, and if applicable, grant preparation. Training in these topics will be included in the Fellows Core Curriculum.


Cardiac M&M (once a month)
Medical Intelligence and Innovation Institute (MI3) meetings (once a month)



Transport M&M (every other month)



Radiology rounds with Radiologist (weekly)

Resident noon PICU lecture (weekly)

Case Conference (weekly)

Fellow specific conferences (weekly) including: Evidence Based Medicine/ Journal Club, Professor Core Lecture Series, Physiology talks, Fellow led Core Topic lectures and research presentations



Cardiac Conference (weekly)

Fellows Core curriculum: including topics on research methodology and analysis, ethics, professionalism, leadership, well-being, etc. (1-2 times a month)



Fellow Board Review course (quarterly)
PICU M&M (once a month)
Ultrasound and simulations (once a month)
ECLS case presentation (once a month)

University of California, Irvine

UCI provides extensive, high quality education and clinical training, with 560 full-time faculty members and more than 1300 volunteer faculty members from 26 clinical departments. UCI sponsors a multitude of innovative and highly productive research programs. In addition to its adult programs, UCI serves as the sponsor for residencies in Pediatrics, Child Neurology, Combined Pediatrics/Anesthesia, and Medical Genetics, as well as fellowships in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, Neonatal/Perinatal Medicine, Pediatric Pulmonology, Pediatric Endocrinology, Pediatric Infectious Disease, Pediatric Urology, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Children’s Hospital of Orange County

CHOC is an academic, community-based hospital that serves as the main site for training in the fellowship. It has 334 beds, including a 30-bed PICU, 12-bed Cardiac ICU, 72-bed NICU and separate Oncology and Neuroscience units. In 2016-2017, there were 12,891 hospital discharges with 89,791 ED visits and 4,252 transports to CHOC. In 2017-2018, there were 2105 admissions to the CHOC PICU and 481 admissions to the CHOC CVICU. CHOC’s ED is a Level II pediatric trauma center. CHOC also operates primary care and specialty clinics throughout the county. The hospital serves about 2 million patients over 4 counties.

The training and education of medical students, residents and fellows has been a longstanding focus of CHOC. Each year, CHOC trains about 290 residents and fellows from 38 different training programs, along with 190 medical students.

Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles

A rotation in the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU), at CHLA will allow our fellows in their third year of fellowship adequate exposure to solid organ transplant and to enhance their exposure to Cardiovascular surgical patients as well. The faculty has extensive experience working with trainees with knowledge and understanding of the ACGME requirements, supervision expectations, and goals and objectives of the rotation. They are committed to the teaching mission.

Applications are accepted through the Electronic Resident Application System (ERAS) and we participate in the National Residency Match Program (NRMP).

Class of 2020-2023

Ancilla Rompala, M.D.
Medical School: Ross University School of Medicine
Residency: West Virginia School of Medicine, Pediatrics

Pavana Sreenivasan, M.B.B.S.
Medical School: J.S.S. Medical College
Residency: Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, Pediatrics

Philip Suh, M.D.
Medical School: University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Residency: UCI/CHOC Pediatrics

Class of 2021-2024

Allison Berryhill, D.O.
Medical School: Midwestern University, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine
Residency: Duke University Hospital, Pediatrics

Amra Sadiq, M.D.
Medial School: St. George’s University School of Medicine, Grenada
Residency: Cooper University Hospital, Pediatrics

Gwendolyn Seemann, M.D.
Medical School: University of Texas Medical Branch School of Medicine
Residency: UCI/CHOC Pediatrics

Class of 2022-2025

Feras Hares, M.D.
Medical School: University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences
Residency: AdventhHealth for Children, Pediatrics

Jacqueline Lee, M.D.
Medical School: Georgetown University School of Medicine
Residency: Medical College of Wisconsin, Pediatrics

Stijn Mintjens, M.D.
Medical School: Universiteit van Amsterdam Faculteit der Geneeskunde, Netherlands
Residency: NYC Health and Hospitals/Lincoln Medical Center, Pediatrics

Clinical Faculty

Juliette Hunt, MD
Program Director, Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Robert B. Kelly, MD
Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Jason M. Knight, MD
Division Chief, Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

James P. Cappon, MD
Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Jason E. Cook, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Michele Domico, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Erica Sanford-Kobyashi
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Vanessa Wong
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine

Gary Goodman, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Andrea Guardenier, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Dina M. Iwai, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Mehrdad Jalili, MD
Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Patricia ­­ Liao, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Paul Liu, MD
Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Paul Lubinsky, MD
Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine

Adam J. Schwarz, MD
Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC Irvine School of Medicine