Program Director

Lester Permut, MD  

Program Overview

Seattle Children’s has been a regional center of excellence in the care of children since its founding in 1907. As the designated provider of pediatric tertiary and quaternary care for Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Alaska, Seattle Children’s has also maintained a leadership role training medical students, residents and fellows in the primary and subspecialty fields of pediatrics. The Congenital Cardiac Surgery Program began in 1953 with the performance of the first pediatric open-heart operation at Seattle Children’s. The clinical program has grown parallel with an active pediatric cardiology service to provide comprehensive diagnostic, interventional and surgical care for all forms of heart disease in children from birth to age 21. We currently perform over 400 open- and 150 closed-heart procedures a year.

Education has always been an important component of Seattle Children’s Congenital Cardiac Surgery Program. Previously, thoracic residents were assigned two one-month pediatric rotations during their two-year training program. However, the advent of defined adult and thoracic “tracks” and the restriction of resident work hours necessitated a decrease in the pediatric component of thoracic surgery residency training. This resulted in a shift of our primary educational emphasis to post-residency training. Our program is among the first to receive ACGME approval for Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship.

The fellowship involves active participation in surgical management including complex neonatal repairs, hybrid surgical/interventional procedures and heart transplant. An active ECMO and VAD program provides experience with all modes of mechanical cardiac support. Non-surgical rotations include echocardiography, interventional cardiology, perfusion and cardiac ICU. Dynamic clinical case conferences as well as a multidisciplinary didactic conference with an emphasis on clinico-morphologic correlation of congenital heart disease will round out the educational experience.

In order to improve the educational and operative experience, our program has expanded to a two-year format beginning in July 2018. The first, “non-accredited,” year includes comprehensive didactic and operative experiences similar to the second, “accredited,” year. It is expected that residents will graduate with a substantially larger total and high-complexity operative case log, making them better prepared for independent post-training practice.

Board certification eligibility upon fellowship completion: Congenital Cardiac Surgery
Length of fellowship: 2 years
Number of fellowships available: 1

Application for 2018

  • Prerequisites: Completion of ACGME-approved thoracic surgery residency
  • Application is through the Thoracic Surgery Directors Association Congenital Cardiac Surgery Match
  • Applications forms and information are available on the TSDA website.
    • June 26–July 31, 2017: Application materials submitted to TSDA
    • August 7–October 6, 2017: Applicant interviews
    • November 20, 2017: Match day

For More Information

Susan Nelson
Congenital Cardiac Surgery Fellowship Program Coordinator
Seattle Children's
PO Box 5371
M/S: RC.2.280
Seattle, WA 98145-5005

Phone: 206-987-1083
Fax: 206-987-3839
Email