Robotic Cardiac Surgery Fellowship in partnership with Medtronic

Robotic systems have been applied in Cardio-Thoracic surgery for more than 20 years, but their application in daily surgical practice is still considered a challenging programme. This Fellowship provides the successful Fellow with the chance to gain both theoretical and practical skills on robotic cardiac surgery and visit Medical Research and Advanced Technological Institutes in Europe.
  • Leadership


  • Grant:


  • Location:

    A high-volume robotic centre in Europe

  • Duration:

    2 months

  • Start Date:

    From January 2025

The Robotic Cardiac Surgery Fellowship is supported by an educational grant from Medtronic.

Fellowship Overview

This Fellowship includes a three-four month placement at a high-volume robotic centre in Europe, where the successful applicant will receive in-depth exposure and experience in basic and complex procedures.

Participants will be able to master basic techniques and train in simulation environment (Level 1 and 2) and will be introduced to Level 3. Contact with proctors will ensure continuous learning and implementation of techniques on completion of the Fellowship.

Training includes didactic lectures, videos, surgery observation and hands-on animal laboratory sessions; exposing the successful Fellow to a virtual training simulation programme in addition to the various aspects of the evaluation, multi-disciplinary treatment, surgical techniques and post-operative care of patients with cardiac diseases.

Learning Objectives

EACTS plays an important role by promoting the educational opportunities for the training surgeons in the field of high-technology such as robotic systems. The fellows have the opportunity to access different levels of training depending on their previous experience and with as general aims:

  • To select the best patients
  • To use and apply the robot in the OR
  • To interact with a robotic team
  • To know and rapidly identify and resolve pitfalls
  • To create hybrid thinking and simulate procedures upfront

These features make part of both the basic and advanced level in cardiac care.

Specific Learning Objectives

  • Buttonology
  • Simulation of robotic handling
  • Patient selection, preparation, installation and management (GCP)
  • Hybrid approach and team interaction
  • Safety steps and emergency management, bedside assistance


  • Buttonology, draping and startup, installation and docking
  • Instrument changes
  • Emergency undocking
  • How to use training instruments and virtual training


To help with living and travel costs associated with this Fellowship, we offer a grant of €12,000. EACTS will also provide a bursary towards the cost of your attendance at the 2025 EACTS Annual Meeting.

Application and Selection

In order to apply for this fellowship there are some essential criteria you must meet:

  • Have access to a da Vinci system or will have in the short term future
  • Be a senior resident/fellow in cardiac surgical training or a young junior surgeon working at a hospital which performs robotic surgery
  • Be an EACTS member with up-to-date membership payment
  • Be fluent in English

Applicants who possess the following desirable criteria would be of particular interest:

  • Robotic surgery experience which includes cases as primary surgeon and/or patient side surgeon (cardiac participants should have some OPCAB background and must have performed 25 cases in OPCAB)
  • Some general surgeon experience in laparoscopy and thoracoscopy
  • Possibility of applying the knowledge and abilities acquired during the fellowship in home practice

The selected trainee is expected to have acquired an adequate amount of knowledge for the competent practice of general cardiac surgery. Experience necessary 4.

In order to complete your application, you must submit the following documents*:

  • Letter of support from current Head of Department/Training director (if in last year of training)
  • Letter of interest (detailing the way in which you meet the application criteria, your career aspirations along with how you are in a position to apply the skills and knowledge obtained during the Fellowship in your own centre)
  • CV detailing publications
  • Operative experience

*Please ensure that all documents submitted are written in English, and that they are submitted either as word documents or PDF. We do not accept images or handwritten applications.  We are unable to provide advice or guidance about visa applications, so please ensure that you understand the visa requirements before applying for this Fellowship.

Evaluation and Feedback

Feedback will be given according to the simulation hours and level achieved. After each month, a structured evaluation of activities with determination of training goals for the next month will be produced.

At the end of the Fellowship, the Fellows will produce a full report on their experience based on the Francis Fontan Fund Committee guidelines.

Terms and Conditions