Neonatal Physician Assistant Residency Program

About the residency program

The Neonatal Physician Assistant Residency Program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is a 12-month intensive program designed for physician assistants (PAs) seeking to subspecialize in neonatology.

The program provides PAs with the skills needed to prepare them to become competent front-line neonatal clinicians. The program includes:

  • Mentoring
  • Didactic teaching
  • Simulations
  • Skills training
  • Clinical experiences

Physician assistant residents will rotate through three sites:

  • CHOP’s Newborn/Infant Intensive Care Unit (N/IICU), a level IV unit that provides the highest level of care for the most complex and critically ill newborns who need access to 24/7 medical and surgical specialty consults
  • Pennsylvania Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), a level III unit that cares for babies with serious medical or surgical conditions
  • Virtua Voorhees Medical Center’s NICU, a level III unit that cares for babies with serious medical or surgical conditions

The program accepts three PAs per year as salaried residents for the program that runs from October to October of the following year. At the conclusion of the program, residents will receive a certificate of completion.

Program objectives

At the completion of the Neonatal PA Residency Program, physician assistant residents will be able to:

  • Provide complete care to neonates up to 6 months of age
  • Provide high-quality front-line care for infants in the delivery room, well-baby nursery and neonatal intensive care unit
  • Provide thorough follow-up care to newborns and infants


Classroom education

The Neonatal PA Residency Program begins with three weeks of classroom didactics, simulation training and observation. This “boot camp” serves as an orientation to the field of neonatology.

Following the three-week orientation, residents will attend weekly learning sessions that will include lectures, simulations and skills training.

Teaching will be provided by an extensive faculty including:

  • Neonatologists and subspecialists
  • Physician assistants
  • Neonatal nurse practitioners
  • Neonatal physician fellows
  • Nutritionists
  • Nurses and lactation specialists
  • Therapists from speech, occupational, physical and recreational therapy
  • Psychologists

Educational topics will begin with fetal development and extend through birth and the first six months of life, including developmental follow-up. The curriculum is extensive and will cover numerous topics that affect the newborn.

Didactics will include an extensive review of disease processes that affect all organ systems with treatment and management.

In addition, PA residents will be invited to attend conferences at all training sites, and physiology didactics lectures given to neonatology physician fellows.

Clinical training

PA residents are assigned a preceptor at each of the three clinical sites, and provided with an outline of educational goals and skills to be mastered on each rotation.

Six months of clinical training will occur at Pennsylvania Hospital and Virtua Voorhees (both level III NICUs). There, PA residents will care for patients in a variety of clinical settings, including:

  • Delivery rooms
  • Well-baby nurseries
  • Neonatal intensive care units
  • Neonatal follow-up
  • Medical and surgical teams

As the resident becomes more proficient and progresses in training, the resident will care for his or her own patient load, which will increase in complexity and numbers while still always working with a clinical preceptor.

PA residents will move on to train at CHOP’s Level IV N/IICU for six months. The PA resident will also begin rotations on nights and weekends with their preceptor. 

One week of elective time is also included in the program. Residents can choose to focus on any specialty during this elective time, as long as the times and locations are available. Residents also complete one week of clinical time with anesthesia, two weeks of clinical time in the cardiac ICU and one week of clinical time with the NeoSurgical team.

How to apply

Applications for the residency program must be completed online between March 1 and March 31.

For application details, go to CHOP’s Careers page.

Other requirements

To carry out its mission, it is of critical importance for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) to keep our patients, families and workforce safe and healthy and to support the health of our global community. In keeping with this, CHOP has mandated all workforce members (including trainees) on site at any CHOP location for any portion of their time be vaccinated for COVID-19 as a condition of employment.

This mandate also applies to workforce members or trainees performing work for CHOP at non-CHOP locations. Additionally, all workforce members based in or regularly scheduled to work at any New Jersey location are mandated to be both vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19, with booster timing consistent with applicable guidelines. The CHOP COVID-19 vaccine mandate is in alignment with applicable local, state and federal mandates. CHOP also requires all workforce members and trainees who work in patient care buildings or who provide patient care to receive an annual influenza vaccine. Employees may request exemption consideration for CHOP vaccine requirements for valid religious and medical reasons. Please note start dates may be delayed until candidates are fully immunized or valid exemption requests are reviewed. In addition, candidates other than those in positions with regularly scheduled hours in New Jersey, must attest to not using tobacco products.

Children's Hospital of Philadelphia is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, religion, national or ethnic origin, disability, protected veteran status or any other protected category. CHOP is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor seeking priority referrals for protected veterans.

CHOP is committed to building an inclusive culture where employees feel a sense of belonging, connection, and community within their workplace. We are a team dedicated to fostering an environment that allows for all to be their authentic selves. We are focused on attracting, cultivating, and retaining diverse talent who can help us deliver on our mission to be a world leader in the advancement of healthcare for children.

We strongly encourage all candidates of diverse backgrounds and lived experiences to apply.

Contact information

For further information, please contact Jim Kerwin.