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Child and Adolescent Burn and Trauma Surgery Externship
Burn injuries constitute a major concern in the pediatric age group with respect to morbidity and mortality. Injury events are disruptive and can have significant consequences. Injuries may threaten the life of the child or other family members and involve acute hospitalization, invasive medical procedures such as wound dressing changes and skin grafting procedures, scarring and the potential loss of functionality. Pediatric burns occur most often in young children under the age of five years, an age category in which children are particularly dependent on their parents. Burn events in preschool children often share many similarities in terms of burn etiology (i.e., scalds caused by hot fluids) and event circumstances (i.e., burn events occurring at home). Many parents of children with burn injuries experience post-traumatic stress.
Advanced clinical psychology doctoral students are encouraged to apply to work with the Trauma and Burn Surgery team’s psychology service. This team is multidisciplinary and includes physicians, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, occupational therapists, social workers, dietitians, Child Life specialists and psychologists. Team members work with individual families to assist with medical and behavioral management of the injury and recovery.
This externship offers clinical and research experiences, as well as the opportunity to contribute to program development. Potential experiences are as follows:
- Consultation with families of children with burn and other traumatic injuries. This includes meeting with families as part of their visits in the hospital’s fast-paced outpatient burn clinic. Psychology provides psychoeducation regarding supporting adjustment, psychosocial screening and brief interventions including pain management strategies as well as other behavioral and cognitive strategies. Attending clinic may provide observational and experiences with interdisciplinary team including physicians, nurse practitioners, occupational and physical therapists working with children/families.
- Outpatient psychotherapy with children and families. Common referral questions include difficulty adjusting to injury, post-traumatic stress surrounding injury, poor adherence to medical regimen, anxiety and depression. There are opportunities for training in conducting trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy (TF-CBT).
- Consultation and treatment with children who have experienced burn and other traumatic injuries during their inpatient hospitalization. Potential duties include reviewing medical records, interviewing children and families, case conceptualization, recommendations for treatment/referral and providing feedback (verbal and chart notes) to medical team.
- Assistance with and experience in participating and observing program development, with particular tasks including: developing a referral network and developing standardized psychosocial assessment screening program.
- Research opportunities may be available for interested and motivated candidates. Clinical research topics may include topics relating to family adjustment to injury and include skill building opportunities in literature reviews, preparing IRB protocols, obtaining consent, database management and preparing presentations and manuscripts.
- Formal didactic opportunities include multidisciplinary burn rounds, clinical research meetings, psychiatry grand rounds and pediatric grand rounds. Didactic availability depends on the days of the week for externship.
Formal coursework in child assessment and child psychopathology/treatment is required. Prior practicum experience in child or adolescent therapy is also required. Prior work on a multidisciplinary team is preferred.
One externship position will be offered.
Please email a letter of interest, CV/resume and two letters of recommendation directly from recommenders to:
Carrie Tully, Ph.D. | Email | 202-476-4546
Available days for externship include Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 16 hours per week.