Department of
Internal Medicine at Highland Hospital
A member of Alameda Health System

Point of Care Ultrasound

Point-of-care (POC) ultrasound has emerged as a noninvasive, inexpensive and portable diagnostic tool to aide in clinical decision-making as well as the gold standard to procedural guidance. Currently, multiple medical specialties and even medical school curriculum committees have begun to integrate POC ultrasound into training. Internal medicine residents at Highland General Hospital have had opportunities use ultrasound in the ICU and during their Emergency Medicine rotations (without formal training). Recognizing that POC ultrasound is becoming a fundamental skill, in 2012, the Departments of Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine partnered to develop a new formal ultrasound curriculum with the goal of offering both the didactics and hands-on training needed to become competent and credentialed in POC ultrasound by residency graduation. The Department of Emergency Medicine at Highland Hospital has been a leader nationally and internationally in innovative ultrasound applications, research, and education, and the partnership affords our residents unparalleled training and the educational opportunities, and an opportunity to become leaders in the burgeoning utilization of POC ultrasound in the field in Internal Medicine.


Ultrasound Bootcamp: An annual half-day course held with the Department of Emergency Medicine for all incoming interns to learn and practice the basics of point-of-care ultrasound. Covers basic echocardiography, lung ultrasound, inferior vena cava, aorta, volume status, FAST exam, renal, biliary, DVT, and ultrasound-guided procedures such as peripheral IV placement and central venous catheters.

Advanced Echocardiography Bootcamp: A new annual half-day hands-on course in collaboration with the Departments of Cardiology and Emergency Medicine to practice more advanced echocardiography skills including measuring ejection fraction, predicting fluid responsiveness, assessing wall motion abnormalities, valvular disease, right heart pathology, and diastolic dysfunction.

2nd/3rd year rotation in diagnostic imaging that includes a structured didactic curriculum in point-of-care ultrasound comprising of literature review, video self-study, and four clinical hands-on training shifts in the Emergency Department and ICU with a fellowship trained emergency physician attending. During this rotation, there are opportunities to learn ultrasound-guided regional anesthesia as well as participate in the Department of Orthopedics bimonthly hip clinic to learn hip arthrocentesis and injections.