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VATS Fellowship in General Thoracic Surgery


  • Grant: €5,000
  • Location: Odense University Hospital, Denmark
  • Duration: 3 months.


The VATS Fellowship in General Thoracic Surgery is an opportunity to receive appropriate training in VATS. This includes gaining all the necessary knowledge and competences to safely perform VATS Lobectomies.

This Fellowship enables the successful Fellows to compile the necessary training in all aspects of lung cancer surgery to be able to achieve the European Board of Cardiothoracic Surgery (Membership and General Thoracic subspecialty) during or after completion of the Fellowship.

Fellowship overview

This three month Fellowship will take place at the Odense University Hospital – a relatively large European centre for lung cancer surgery and host to several, annual international VATS lobectomy symposia several times annually.

Trainees will be involved with daily hands-on experience in a stepwise training process that will eventually allow them to safely perform VATS lobectomy in patients undergoing resection for early-stage lung cancer. The Fellowship will assist in the management of patients with special focus in minimal invasive thoracic surgery.

The successful Fellows will participate in daily morning departmental sessions in which the entire surgical staff discuss the surgical patients followed by rounds. Supervising staff and surgical colleagues will adapt communication in English, where needed.


Section 1 aspects of the EBCTS Syllabus covering principles of general thoracic surgery and critical care.

Section 2 aspects of the EBCTS Syllabus related to the Generality of Surgery, Critical Care and Thoracic Surgery will be covered.

The academic part of the Fellowship will be delivered via seminars, lectures and individual lessons (provided by the staff surgeons and international faculty) for a continuing change in topics covering all aspects of thoracic surgery such as, but not limited to:

  • Lung Cancer Screening
  • Role of Sub-Lobar Resection Stage I NSCLC
  • Pancoast Tumor Management
  • Tracheal Stenosis
  • Tracheal Esophageal Fistula
  • Carinal Resection and Reconstruction
  • VATS for Lung Cancer – Incision Choice and Dissection Techniques
  • Minimally Invasive Lung Surgery
  • LN Dissection For NSCLC
  • Management of Complications of Lung Resections
  • Management single station N2 NSCLC
  • Management Strategies for Thymic Tumors
  • Minimally Invasive Thymectomy
  • Management of Refractory Empyema
  • Management of Bronchopleural fistulas
  • Chest Wall Reconstruction

Specific Learning Objectives

  • Obtain the knowledge and skills necessary to deliver a VATS lobectomy in patients treated for early-stage lung cancer.
  • Obtain the knowledge and clinical judgment necessary to obtain the EBCTS membership and Fellowship.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn the contemporary indications for VATS lobectomy in the generality of the specialty
  • Learn to use all the invasive and non-invasive tools for a safe delivery of VATS lobectomy
  • Develop organisational skills, leadership management and integrate all hospital and health care individual resources for the benefit of the patient and community
  • Understand the need for specific protocols development and use in the field of cardiovascular surgery


An award of up to €5,000 for the three month placement will be granted to cover the travel and living expenses for the Fellowship period.

In addition you will receive free registration to the EACTS 2024 Annual Meeting along with a travel bursary to attend the meeting.

Application and selection criteria

Eligibility criteria

In order to apply for this fellowship, you must:

  • Be an EACTS member
  • First five years of independent practice
  • Be Fluent in English

The following documents must be provided as part of your application:

  • Letter of interest detailing the way in which you meet the above application criteria, along with your career aspirations, as well as how you believe the Fellowship will impact your career.
  • Curriculum Vitae, including pertinent publications
  • Summary of operative experience – priority should be given to applicant with prior VATS experience
  • Letter of support from current supervisor

Application guidance

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

There will be periodic communication with the Fellowship director to ensure feedback from the trainee.

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