Cardiologist Education and Training Programs

Cardiologists are physicians who help their patients manage heart disease, hypertension and other cardiac conditions. Find out about the prerequisites needed to get into a fellowship program, the curriculum to expect, benefits, advanced programs to further your education, and certification requirements. Schools offering Cardiovascular Sonography degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Education Will I Need Before I Begin My Cardiologist Training?

Your education as a cardiologist begins several years before you enter a medical university's cardiology fellowship program. You will first need to complete a pre-medical bachelor's degree program, a medical school program and an internal medicine residency. You will also need to pass all three steps of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE).

Prerequisites Completion of pre-med bachelor's degree program, med school program, and internal medicine residency.
Fellowship Curriculum A 3-4 year program that teaches cardiovascular disease through in-work training environments such as rotations in cardiac surgery departments
Fellowship Benefits Salary, life insurance, vacation time
Advanced Programs Heart failures, transplants, interventional cardiology
Certification Passing the ABIM exam

What Will My Fellowship Involve?

Your initial cardiology training will involve a 3-4-year fellowship in the area of cardiovascular disease or general cardiology. Through clinical rotations in pediatric cardiology, cardiac surgery and cardiac exercise departments, you may receive training in cardiac consults, cardiac catherizations, nuclear medicine and cardiac imaging. Your institution's program requirements could also involve a research component.

Will I Receive Benefits?

Many cardiology fellowship programs come with benefits similar to full-time employment. These benefits may include salary, health insurance, life insurance and vacation time. Your program may also offer relocation reimbursement, a hospital meal plan or stipends for purchasing uniforms.

What Specialties Can I Apply For?

Once you complete your general cardiology or cardiovascular disease fellowship, you can apply for advanced fellowship programs in a cardiac sub-specialty like heart failures and transplants, cardiac electrophysiology or interventional cardiology. Students in these 1-year programs also conduct research and complete clinical rotations.

What About Certification?

After you complete a fellowship program, you may qualify for certification from the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM). This organization offers certification exams in the areas of advanced heart failure and transplant cardiology, interventional cardiology, cardiovascular disease and clinical cardiac electrophysiology. According to the ABIM, earning this credential demonstrates to patients that you have met professional training standards (www.abim.org).

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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