Thoracic Surgery

OHSU's traditionally formatted two-year Thoracic Surgery Fellowship educational program is designed to emphasize the cooperation of cardiothoracic surgeons with other primary and specialty physicians to diagnose and treat lifelong disease states. This multidisciplinary team functions within a health care system toward economic and long-term outcome goals.

Fellowship Information

Program Director

Paul Schipper, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.A.C.C.P.

Section Head for Adult Cardiac Surgery

Howard Song, M.D., Ph.D.

Section Head for General Thoracic Surgery

Mithran Sukumar, M.D.

Program Coordinator

Anne L. Nelson


OHSU Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery
Mail Code L353
3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Road
Portland, OR 97239-3098


503 494-4196


503 494-7829



Number of Fellows per year (August 1 to July 31)


Application process

To qualify for a position in OHSU's Thoracic Surgery program, applicants must have completed a residency in General Surgery. Applicants must ensure they meet all program prerequisites and institutional policies regarding eligibility for appointment prior to ranking a program through the NRMP. Candidates are selected through ERAS.

Application and interview dates

  • Application deadline is January 18, 2019 for a Thoracic Surgery Fellowship beginning August 1, 2020
  • Interview dates for 2019 are February 9 and March 16
  • Optional Friday shadowing opportunities on request
  • Friday night reception buffet at downtown restaurant
  • Saturday faculty presentations and one-on-one interviews with faculty
  • The NRMP Thoracic and Vascular Surgery Match Day is in May

Applicants must register with both of the following

  • Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS)
  • National Resident Matching Program (NRMP)

Number of Faculty



Dependent upon PGY level; 2017-2018 range: $69,100 (PGY6) to $73,200 (PGY7)

Case mix/number of cases

A table presenting the average number of ABTS cases per year per resident performed in our program can be found on the Thoracic Surgery Fellowship Case Mix/Number of Cases (55.14 KB).

Weekly clinical schedules include

  • General Thoracic Surgery clinic on Mondays
  • Interventional Cardiology/Cardiac Surgery Cath Lab on Thursdays
  • Multidisciplinary Lung Clinic on Fridays

Weekly patient conferences include

  • VA Lung Tumor Board on Mondays
  • OHSU Surgery M&M Conferences on Mondays
  • OHSU Cardiothoracic Surgery M&M Conferences (2nd Mondays)
  • Cardiology Multidisciplinary Conference on Tuesdays
  • Esophageal Care Conference on Wednesdays
  • Pulmonary Radiology Conference on Wednesdays
  • Multidisciplinary Lung Conference on Fridays
  • Interventional Cardiology/Cardiac Cath Conference on Thursdays
  • VA Multidisciplinary Cardiac Conference on Thursdays

Weekly curriculum reviews

  • Adult Cardiac Surgery on Mondays
  • General Thoracic Surgery on Fridays

Interaction with general surgery residents

The Thoracic Surgery fellow will be part of the surgical team and thus will interact with general surgery residents and medical students. The fellow will be expected to participate in teaching opportunities of the daily care of surgical patients.

Strengths of program

Leadership development is deemed to be one of the unique and important missions of our program. We believe surgical leadership is defined by the ability to guide and work with multidisciplinary (interdisciplinary) teams. We teach this process of leadership development. Residents leave this program with the tools for lifelong learning and growth as a person, as a surgeon and as a collaborator in the interdisciplinary system of health care delivery. Residents are part of the process. As they develop ideas that lead to improvements, they are encouraged to voice them (they attend the division faculty meetings) and good suggestions are implemented.

Our faculty are outstanding and recipients of multiple awards and recognition, including the OHSU Department of Surgery Marquam Hill Teaching Award and the OHSU Cardiothoracic Surgery Teaching Award.

Our program has frequent porcine heart, lung, and esophageal simulation events in our on-site surgery lab, VirtuOHSU.

We send our incoming fellows to TSDA Boot Camp.

Clinic or office experience

Fellows are required to attend clinic according to faculty schedules and will assume primary responsibility for diagnostic work-up and treatment plans. Fellows participate in rotations at two hospital sites: Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) and the Portland Veterans' Affairs Medical Center (PVAMC), which has adult cardiac and general thoracic surgery rotations.

Outside rotations


Research year


Requirement for paper and presentation

Fellows are expected to select, research and present a systems-based clinical project at Surgery Grand Rounds in June of their 2nd year.