REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
DEPARTMENT OF OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY
The task of a fellowship program in the Section of Reproductive Medicine, Department of
Obstetrics and Gynecology, will complete the role of the Section at King Faisal Specialist
Hospital & Research Centre (KFSH&RC).
II. GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
The goal of the Fellowship Program in Reproductive Medicine at KFSH&RC is to train a
general obstetrician/gynecologist to function as an independent consultant in Reproductive
Medicine. It will provide basic training in the subspecialty to fellows wishing to pursue a
career in clinical reproductive medicine, research or teaching. The training will be of high
quality, and qualified fellows throughout the Kingdom will be accepted for subspecialty
positions in the area of Reproductive Medicine. It is the program’s objective that the fellows
achieve the following:
A) Experience in the management of a wide variety of clinical problems affecting the
development, function and aging of the human reproductive system. This experience
should include disorders related to both male and female reproduction.
B) Adequate and diverse surgical experience related to infertility, including techniques
of assisted reproduction. Procedures include diagnostic laparoscopy, medium
level laparoscopic surgery (ectopic pregnancy, ovarian cysts, adhesions), diagnostic
hysteroscopy, hysteroscopic surgery, and IVF procedures (ovum pick-up and
C) Knowledge of techniques and limitations of the various laboratory procedures
utilized in clinical reproductive endocrinology.
D) A research experience centered around a specific area of investigation that can
possibly provide a published thesis for the fellow and stimulate future independent
A) Candidates must have completed four (4) years of residency training in Obstetrics
and Gynecology and hold a specialty certificate, i.e. Saudi Specialty Certificate,
Arab Board, or equivalent.
B) Candidates should have letters of reference from at least three (3) referees who
know them professionally.
C) Candidates must have passed a personal interview by the Fellowship Committee
of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
D) In order to participate in direct patient care under supervision in the
complementary program, the candidate should pass the qualifying examinations
required in the host country.
IV. NUMBER OF FELLOWSHIP POSITIONS
No more than two fellows will be accepted in the program every two years.
The Section of Reproductive Medicine at KFSH&RC has an adequate number of consultants.
The ambulatory services support high quality care for women and provide care for both
partners with disorders of infertility. Operating rooms are equipped for operative
laparoscopy and microsurgical procedures. Embryology and Andrology laboratories are
equipped to conduct hormone assays, sperm function testing and embryo culture.
Equipment and experience are available within the Department of Obstetrics and
Gynecology, and/or the Department of Radiology for a wide variety of diagnostic studies,
including ultrasonography, hysterosalpingography, computerized tomography and magnetic
resonance imaging. A microsurgical and endoscopic laboratory is available at KFSH&RC to
enhance the surgical skills of the fellows. A comprehensive medical library, equipped for
computerized literature-searching, contains a wide variety of clinical and basic science
VI. PROGRAM CONTENT
The fellowship in Reproductive Medicine requires two (2) years of training. During these
years, the fellows are expected to acquire surgical and research skills which will enable them
to practice with competence in the field of Reproductive Medicine.
To achieve this goal, the fellows must deepen their basic knowledge in medicine, beyond
what they acquired in their training as general obstetrician/gynecologists. Furthermore, they
are expected to acquire enough skills in interpreting laboratory, radiologic and histologic
data to allow them to function as proficient consultants in the subspecialty. Research is
mandatory in the training of the fellows.
The fellows will both give and attend lectures that address all aspects of the reproductive
physiology, pathology physiology, and new therapy in reproductive medicine and infertility.
Lectures will be given by consultants from the Section of Reproductive Medicine at both
Fellows are expected to refer to standard texts in endocrinology, read designated endocrine
journals regularly, and review series in the subspecialty as well as articles selected by
The Infertility Service provides a wide experience for the fellows to diagnose, manage, and
monitor infertile patients. They are expected to be proficient in performing pelvic
ultrasound scanning and interpretation.
After the first few months of training, the fellows will become increasingly involved in
consultations and teaching of the junior staff.
VII. FORMAT OF THE TWO-YEAR FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
It will allow the fellow to gain experience in various clinical problems involving male
infertility and their treatment involving endoscopic procedures and/or reproductive
technologies. Outpatient experience is particularly important and will be carefully organized
and supervised by the clinical faculty. Direct hands-on experience with transvaginal
ultrasound imaging techniques is considered to be an integral part of the training experience.
The fellow is expected to have direct experience in the interpretation of all imaging
procedures and access to histological material available from surgical specimens. The fellow
will have a major role in all decisions affecting patient management and be part of a program
that allows for continuum of patient care. By the end of this year one month will be spent in
the IVF Laboratory, learning the basic diagnostic as well as treatment procedures. During
this period the fellow will be expected to give regular seminars to residents and other
members of the department on topics related to reproductive medicine. The performance of
the fellow will be evaluated through periodic formal appraisals by all participating faculty.
In order to develop an appreciation of the scope and limitations of laboratory techniques, the
fellow will become familiar with the relevant laboratory procedures in reproductive
endocrinology. During the first part of the fellowship, the fellow is expected to conceptualize
a question or hypothesis and develop a strategy to resolve the question. This is in anticipation
of the second part of the fellowship where more emphasis will be towards research. The
topic of research will be selected, such that it will be applicable to medical problems
commonly observed in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The fellow will acquire a thorough understanding of the theory and special methodology
utilized to perform immunoassays, tissue culture techniques, receptor assays, DNA-RNA
analysis, and chromosomal karyotyping. Included in this is an in-depth understanding of
quality control of each of these laboratory procedures. A rotation that will allow participation
in clinical activities of the Pediatric Endocrinology service will be extremely helpful to
provide experience with various endocrinologic problems such as sexual ambiguities,
enzyme deficiencies and genetic diseases. The fellow will participate fully in the theoretical
and technical aspects of research projects being conducted within the training program.
During this period, two compulsory postgraduate level courses, one in biostatistics, and the
other in basic endocrinology, will provide an opportunity for the fellow to obtain formal and
didactic education, preferably to be completed before the research component starts. These
courses must be completed satisfactorily with documentation of a passing grade. The courses
must have a final examination which the fellow must pass.
After successfully completing the 2-year program, the fellow will be certified by KFSH & RC
as a reproductive endocrinologist.
THIRD YEAR (OPTIONAL)
This year is optional for fellows who want to pursue further training. This part will be spent
in an institution abroad. The main emphasis during this period is to attain certain skills and
experience in one of the sub-interest areas of Reproductive Medicine, to meet the country’s
needs. These areas include Reproductive Surgery, Recurrent Pregnancy Loss, Gynecological
Endocrinology, Clinical Genetics and Andrology. During this period, the fellow is supposed
to finalize the designated research project. The fellow is also expected to participate in, and
present at annual meetings of prominent reproductive endocrinology or infertility societies.
The performance of the fellow will be evaluated through periodic formal appraisals by all the
participating faculty. At the end of the fellowship training, a certificate with special
qualification in reproductive endocrinology will be issued.
Abstracts on a number of studies in which the objectives, materials, methods, and anticipated
problems in the conduct of the research are outlined, will be made available to the fellows.
They will choose one project and will be required to conceive and write a protocol under the
guidance of the consultant who provided the abstract. Research will be supervised by a
committee within the Section, and if expertise in some aspect of the project is not present,
help would be sought from outside the Section. The aim of the research is to train the
fellows in posing scientific questions, designing experiments to answer those questions,
analyzing data, and coming to conclusions appropriate for the data obtained. These ideas
will then be conveyed to the medical community through well-written publications and
IX. FACILITIES AND CLINICAL TEACHING
The fellows will spend a good proportion of their time seeing patients in clinics. They will be
involved in the supervision of rotating residents. The fellows will be expected to participate
in the general obstetrics and gynecology call, and in teaching residents. These activities will
represent a minimal proportion of the fellows’ time commitment. The Section of
Reproductive Medicine has one operating room day, mainly for diagnostic and operative
endoscopy. Also, outpatient infertility procedures are increasingly developed and made
available. The fellows are expected to be actively involved in the management of these cases.
KFSH&RC has a superb library facility, comparable to those of the best academic institutions.
It has a large collection of textbooks and subscribes to all leading infertility journals. Fellows
in the Hospital have access to abstracted literature through a computer access system.
X. ACADEMIC, TEACHING, AND ADMINISTRATION
The fellows should take an active role in ongoing academic and teaching activities, such as
journal clubs and case presentations.
1. Except for the modifications mentioned in Section XIV, the guidelines stipulated in
the existing KFSH&RC Fellowship Training Policy Manual relating to performance,
responsibility, and conduct will apply to fellows in this program.
2. Throughout the training period, the fellows will be assessed to ensure that the
aims and objectives of the program are being followed and achieved. During the first
year, an ongoing assessment will be made by the Section staff. At 6-month intervals, a
formal means of assessment is required, i.e., a viva voce examination, written examination
(including MCQs), and formal interview. Topics for evaluation will include the fellows’
general clinical standing with regard to their future functions as consultants, and
discussion of their research and publication topics. Should any deficiencies be
highlighted, these will be communicated to the fellows to allow for early improvement.
3. The Program Director will discuss the assessment with the fellow at the end of each
4. The Program Director will refer specific problems to the departmental Fellowship
5. At the conclusion of the fellowship training, a formal examination will be given to fellows,
that will again include a written examination (possibly essay type questions), with MCQs
and viva voce examination. During the final evaluation, research and publication topics
will be further discussed and taken into consideration. The contribution of the fellows to
teaching will also be a key point to be evaluated.
6. The Section is encouraged to invite members of Endocrinology Section in the Department
of Medicine, and the Research Centre to participate in the assessment of the fellows.
7. The fellows will be awarded a joint certificate by KFSH&RC and the complementary
program upon satisfactory completion of the Reproductive Medicine Fellowship Training
Regulations governing holidays are as stipulated in the KFSH&RC Fellowship Training Policy
XIII. AMENDMENTS TO KFSH&RC’S “POLICY FOR FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM”
The Academic & Training Affairs (ATA) policy manual for Fellowship Training Program will
serve as the main policy document for the Fellowship Program in Reproductive Medicine.
Following are the sections amended:
XIV. Responsibility of Institution
A. 4. Evaluation of fellows will be at six (6) months intervals (refer to Section XI of this
manual, i.e., Fellowship in Reproductive Medicine).
XV. Eligibility for Admission to Fellowship Training
2. The candidate must possess a certificate in the specialty of Obstetrics and Gynecology,
i.e., Saudi Specialty Certificate, Arab Board, or equivalent.
The candidate must have passed the qualifying examinations to enroll in a supervised
training in the country of the complementary program (refer to Section II of this
manual, i.e., Fellowship in Reproductive Medicine).
XVI. Selection and Mechanism of Appointment
2. Processing of applications should be completed at least nine (9) months before the start
of the fellowship program.
3. Accepted fellows will start the fellowship training program in July (every two years).
XVII. Program Organization and Responsibilities
B. 12. In order to keep resources at optimal level and for proper planning between
the institutions, fellows can not spend more than one year in each level.
The fellow has to complete the program successfully within the three-year
period of training. This will be achieved through submission to the
departmental Fellowship Committee of six-month reports summarizing the
fellow’s performance, including a recommendation that he/she:
a. be promoted to the next level of training, or
b. be dropped from the program.
The departmental Fellowship Committee chairman shall forward the report
with the Committee’s recommendation to ATA.
XVIII. Re-appointment and Promotion
A. 2. Refer to amendments in VII. B. 12 above.
XIX. Disciplinary Action and Due Process
The fellow's suspension rules under X.3. is omitted since such suspension will disrupt the
flow of the program. This paragraph is replaced by the following:
3. Decisions regarding termination of fellowship are made by the Executive Director of
ATA based on the joint recommendation of the Program Director, the Department
Chairman "at KFSH&RC", and the Section Head.
u:docsaddocstrainingfellowmanualmanualob_gyne_manual Reproductive Med_ 2006_new
Reproductive Medicine Fellowship Program
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Revised: June 2006
Dr. Saad Al Hassan Dr. Ahmed Al Shaikh
Program Director, Reproductive Medicine Deputy Executive Director
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology Academic & Training Affairs
Dr. Abdullah Al-Dalaan
Academic & Training Affairs