Skip to main content

Hospice & Palliative Medicine Fellowship

Watch the Video


Established in 1998, our ACGME-accredited fellowship consists of one year of clinical rotations and educational experiences.

Each fellowship class consists of three fellows with an adult-focused specialization, complemented by one fellow each in pediatrics-focused and perinatal pediatrics-focused areas. These fellows rotate with strong interdisciplinary teams at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Lurie Children’s Hospital, the Jesse Brown and Hine VA Medical Centers and our hospice partner, AccentCare. Past fellows have gone on to faculty positions at major academic institutions, including Case Western Reserve University, George Washington University, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Medical College of Wisconsin, Northwestern University, Rush University, Stanford University, University of Chicago, University of Kentucky, University of Nebraska, University of Pittsburgh, University of Southern California, University of Virginia, University of Wisconsin and Yale University. They have also assumed leadership roles in community hospice and palliative care programs, including Amita Health, Presence Health and JourneyCare.

About the Program

Palliative Medicine Education


There are five core components of our formal educational program for palliative care fellows:

  1. A regional fellows’ conference consisting of a monthly half-day conference with all Chicago-area palliative care fellowships.
  2. Weekly fellows’ conference consisting of clinical topics, case conferences, journal clubs and reflective reading.
  3. Weekly palliative care/hem-onc conference during the summer focusing on supportive oncology.
  4. A three-day intensive communication skills training retreat in the fall.
  5. A longitudinal spirituality curriculum

Reinforcing our formal didactic curriculum, fellows are an integral part of our interdisciplinary team, which relies upon team members from multiple professional backgrounds to explore and address the medical, psychosocial, spiritual, cultural, and socioeconomic influences on every patient’s (and family’s) experience of serious illness.  Fellows develop their clinical skills over time by working alongside members of the team, continuously reflecting upon areas for improvement, and by collaborating with colleagues across the institution and region to seek the best goal-consistent outcome for each patient and family.

Palliative Medicine Fellow Presenting Research

Scholarly Activity

Several opportunities for scholarly activity are available through the fellowship program. All fellows have a half day per week that is protected for academic time and all fellows complete a mentored quality improvement project in an area of interest.  Examples of prior projects include: improving hand-off processes within the Section, integrating functional assessment into Palliative Care clinic and establishing workflows within the emergency room to address goals of care during the COVID pandemic.

Fellows also have the opportunity to engage in other teaching and research projects within the Section of Palliative Care or in conjunction with other faculty throughout the University.  Examples of recent or ongoing academic work within the Section include:

Clinical Experience

Fellows rotate through Hospice & Palliative Medicine for a year, and their clinical experience includes:

  • Northwestern Memorial Hospital inpatient Palliative Care Service (four months)
  • Jesse Brown Veteran’s Affairs (VA) Hospital inpatient Palliative Care Service (two months)
  • Hospice (three months)
  • MICU (two weeks)
  • Pediatric Palliative Care at Lurie Children's Hospital (two weeks)
  • Elective time (six weeks): Shirley Ryan Ability Lab (Formerly RIC), Northwestern Interventional Pain Clinic, spirituality, psychiatry, and opportunities abroad

The McGaw Palliative and Hospice Medicine Program offers a “Pediatrics Track” in collaboration with the Pediatric Palliative Care program at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Lurie Children’s is McGaw’s tertiary care children’s hospital, located on the Northwestern Medicine campus and connected to Northwestern Memorial Hospital by a bridge.

The pediatrics track within the McGaw fellowship involves approximately 8 months of pediatric palliative care experience with 3 months of adult palliative and hospice care experience. 

The program at Lurie Children’s provides inpatient and outpatient consultative services focusing on 1) pain and non-pain symptom management and 2) guidance and support for complex medical decision making and goals of care in the setting of life-limiting illness.  Faculty consists of three full-time palliative care physicians as well as four physicians who practice palliative care in addition to other specialties including hematology/oncology/stem cell transplantation, pediatric critical care, and neonatology).  Additional team members include five advanced practice nurses as well as a nurse coordinator. In addition to the primary pediatric team we also have a growing perinatal palliative care consultation service as part of our division where trainees have the opportunity to experience perinatal palliative care consults. This core team partners with other programs within Lurie, such as social work and psychology, chaplaincy, child life, creative arts therapists, Heartlight (Lurie’s bereavement program), ParentWise, and others to provide multidisciplinary care.  The Lurie Children’s pediatric palliative care physicians collaborate with the pediatric team at the JourneyCare home hospice and palliative care agency and other community based home hospice agencies that serve the metropolitan Chicago area and beyond. 

Natasha Henner, MD is the full-time pediatric palliative care program director at Lurie Children’s.

Apply to the Program

Requirements and Eligibility

Candidates who have completed an ACGME-accredited residency in Internal Medicine, Anesthesiology, Family Medicine, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Psychiatry, Neurology, Surgery, Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Radiology, or Obstetrics and Gynecology are eligible to apply. Positions are contingent upon eligibility for a full unrestricted Illinois medical license. If applicable, candidates must also possess a valid VISA and be eligible to work in the United States.

Application Process

Hospice & Palliative Medicine is participating in the National Residency Match Program (NRMP). Our program accepts applications through the ERAS website and will begin reviewing application via ERAS. For more information, please contact LaWanna Audain at 312-926-0008. Questions about the pediatric track fellowship can be sent to the Pediatric Track Program Director, Natasha Henner, MD.

As you consider us as the potential sponsor with which to continue your training, we want to provide you with information about McGaw’s institutional benefits and policies available on our site

The following items must be submitted before you application may be considered:

  1. Curriculum vitae (including a list of publications)
  2. Personal statement
  3. Official medical school transcript
  4. Letters of recommendation from three faculty members familiar with your current experience, one of whom must be your residency program director
  5. Photocopy of original examination results with dates
  6. Photocopy of ECFMG certificate (if applicable)
  7. Photocopy of visa/citizenship papers (if applicable)

Please be sure to select McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern and our program's ACGME code is 5401614026.

Diversity & Inclusion

The Department of Medicine at Northwestern University seeks to attract inquisitive, motivated residents and fellows and is committed to providing them with every opportunity for success. The greatest challenges facing the medical field are complex, and addressing them will require a diverse body of physicians and researchers who can work collaboratively. Northwestern offers unparalleled training and research opportunities and encourages fellowship applications from those who seek to become future leaders in the subspecialties of medicine.  We are committed to and inspired by a diverse and inclusive work environment that allows each trainee to achieve their personal goals. Learn more via the links below.

DOM Diversity Council McGaw Diversity & Inclusion

Contact Us

Joshua Hauser, MD

Joshua Hauser, MD

Palliative Medicine Fellowship Director

Hospital Medicine

View Faculty Profile

Gordon J Wood, MD

Gordon J Wood, MD

Palliative Medicine Fellowship Associate Director

Hospital Medicine

View Faculty Profile

LaWanna Audain

Fellowship Coordinator

Hospital Medicine

lawanna.audain( at )

Why Northwestern?

Learn more about the benefits of training at a world-class academic medical center in a diverse and vibrant city of Chicago. Further program details, including the Department of Medicine housestaff manual and a sample training contract, are available on our McGaw Medical Center Graduate Education site.

We also recommend reading through our FREIDA listing (program number 540-16-14-026).


millennium park in chicago

Physician-Scientist Training & Resources

We offer a wide range of resources, mentorship opportunities and formal training programs to help our residents and fellows excel as physician-scientists. Explore all of the resources and hear from housestaff who are making research a major part of their career development plans.

Visit the Starzl Academy Site