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Welcome Letters

Welcome Letter from Karen Kaul, MD, PhD; Chair of Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

The Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at NorthShore (NorthShore) provides a vibrant, innovative, and personable environment for training. The Department provides inpatient, outpatient, and reference lab services to the four NorthShore hospitals, the individual offices of the Medical Group physicians and other healthcare facilities in the Chicago area. The department sees approximately 120,000 surgical and 4.5 million clinical samples annually, which include a mix of complex, specialty and routine cases. Because of the sub-specialized nature of the clinical services in medicine and surgery, the presence of the Kellogg Cancer Center, and the Women's Hospital, the department includes a full spectrum of specialty services onsite in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology. The Department includes 28 faculty members representing Surgical Pathology, Cytopathology, Autopsy, Hematopathology, Dermatopathology, Neuropathology, Molecular Pathology and Genomics, Chemistry, Microbiology and Virology, and Transfusion Medicine. 

The Department has a long history of educational focus. NorthShore is currently an academic affiliate of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine and hosts a large number of University of Chicago medical students, residents and fellows on site. Pathology, Medicine, and Family Medicine are independent residency programs at NorthShore, sponsored by the University of Chicago. The Pathology Residency Program dates back to the 1980s and has a longstanding history of success. Graduates have a strong record of success in seeking fellowships and jobs in the academic or community sector.  Innovation and research projects are encouraged and funded by the department, and each resident has the opportunity to attend multiple national and local pathology meetings.  During their training, residents benefit from the centralized location within Evanston Hospital, which promotes clinical consultation as well as availability of the faculty, though the breadth of cases from the other hospitals and outreach add to the case mix.  Additionally, NorthShore residents benefit from the extensive EMR investment. NorthShore was the first institution to implement Epic throughout all inpatient and outpatient services, and the first to receive enterprise-wide HIMSS7 designation; this puts complete patient data in the hands of physicians and residents at NorthShore. 

The culture at NorthShore is one of collaboration and collegiality. The department functions as an integral part of the health care team, with numerous tumor boards and teaching rounds held in conjunction with our clinical colleagues each week. Residents become involved in many intradepartmental studies and quality efforts during their tenure. Interdisciplinary collaboration is a hallmark of NorthShore and has led to great success in our cancer programs, adult and perinatal genetics, infection control, and most recently our individualized medicine program.

We welcome your interest in NorthShore and encourage your questions and application to our program!

Karen L. Kaul, MD, PhD, Chair

Welcome Message from Ajit Paintal, MD, Residency Program Director

The Department of Pathology at NorthShore has a long history of providing well-balanced training in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology in a collegial environment that supports resident research and enables our graduates to succeed in whatever field they choose.  We have dedicated faculty with varied subspecialty training and interests that are committed to providing excellent patient care as well as educating our residents and fellows.  We are proud of the fact that a large proportion of the faculty in our department are former trainees. 

While the residency program is based at our flagship facility and recently renovated space in Evanston Hospital, trainees benefit from the fact that our growing health system now includes 8 hospitals.  The large volume of testing in our clinical labs allows for a large proportion of esoteric testing to be performed in house.  In addition, many complex oncologic cases from elsewhere in the NorthShore system are referred to Evanston Hospital for surgery and management providing exposure to a rich and diverse volume of clinical material.  Evanston Hospital is also home to the Kellogg Cancer Center where residents have exposure to ten weekly multi-disciplinary management conferences spanning numerous surgical and oncologic subspecialties. 

Our department can boast of a number of achievements in recent years that speak to the level of clinical excellence that we strive to maintain.  First and foremost, we were the first hospital in the state of Illinois as well as one of the first hospitals in the nation to develop in house testing for COVID-19.  Furthermore, we are one of the few hospitals in the Chicagoland area with the capacity to perform and interpret multiplex next generation sequencing assays for solid and hematologic malignancies.  Our commitment to stay on the cutting edge of innovation can also be seen in our adoption of emerging technologies such as lab automation and telepathology.  Notably, we were the first hospital in the nation to implement the BD Kiestra Total Lab Automation system in our microbiology lab.        

Exposure to the diverse and varied clinical volume as well as to our cutting edge facilities provides a rich learning environment for trainees and also ample opportunities for inquiry and research.  In the past academic year (2021-2022), the faculty and trainees of our department have authored over 40 peer reviewed publications.  Our trainees also routinely present research at a number of national and regional meetings including USCAP and CAP. 

Our core program is based at Evanston Hospital, but because of our affiliation with the University of Chicago, senior residents also have the opportunity to participate in outside rotations if desired.  Our NRMP program name and program code is University of Chicago (NorthShore) Pathology, 1160300C2.

We feel that our training program is best judged by its outcomes.  Our trainees routinely achieve placement in competitive fellowships and have succeeded in academia, industry, as well as community practice.

We welcome your interest and invite you to further explore this site.   We also look forward to getting to know you better during the application process.

Ajit Paintal, MD, Residency Program Director