Bob Allison Cardiovascular Surgery PA Residency Program at Houston Methodist Hospital

(formerly known as Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Surgery PA Residency Program)

6560 Fannin Street
Suite 1842
Houston, Texas 77030
(713) 790-2089

Boris Bratovich, MHA, PA-C
Program Director

Length of Program: 12 months
Class Size: 1-2

Program Description and History

The Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center/ The Methodist Hospital Department of Cardiovascular Surgery is a world-renowned organization located in Houston, Texas, performing over 4000 surgeries each year. Dr. Michael E. DeBakey was instrumental in the formation of the Methodist Hospital’s cardiovascular surgery service, performing the first successful coronary artery bypass in the early 1960’s. In state-of- the art facilities, using some of the world’s most sophisticated technology, Methodist’s cardiovascular and thoracic surgeons are on the leading edge of diagnosis, treatment and discovery.

This tradition of innovative treatment continues today with new techniques for mitral valve repair, stenting of great vessels, robotics, off-pump coronary bypass and transplant surgery. Due to limitations on Physician resident duty hours and economics of the specialty, opportunities for Physician Assistants have increased dramatically. However, most employers require experience.

The Postgraduate Cardiovascular Residency Program for Physician Assistants is a 12-month residency offered by The Methodist Hospital in conjunction with Weill Cornell Medical College since 2007. Since the program’s inception, we have graduated over twenty PA residents, and all have been able to obtain a job in cardiovascular surgery prior to graduation. The residency will provide qualified candidates the opportunity to learn and improve on their basic surgical sciences, clinical and operative skills, and in the process take advantage of the job opportunities available nationwide.


Clinical and didactic components of the program are integrated. Residents will attend lectures in Cardiac surgery, vascular surgery, and Cardiac Anesthesia year-round. When rotating thru ICU, more lectures will be given pertaining to the care of the patient in that setting. i.e. ventilator management, fluids and electrolytes, and inotropic/vasoactive drugs.

Residents will become proficient in:

  • Endoscopic Vein Harvest (EVH)
  • Open Heart Surgery: principles and practice of first assisting
  • Vascular Surgery: principles and practice of first assisting
  • Endovascular procedures:
    • Femoral access, femoral closure techniques
    • Basic diagnostic angiography
    • Assisting in complex endovascular procedures
      • Cardiovascular ICU
      • Floor care for the cardiovascular patient
      • Principles of non-invasive cardiovascular imaging
      • Additional lectures available in:
        • Thoracic Journal Club
        • Vascular Journal Club
        • Weekly peripheral vascular conference
        • Weekly MDHCV lecture
        • Youtube

All Physician Assistant residents will receive the latest edition of Robert M. Bojar’s Manual of Perioperative Care in Cardiac Surgery and a vascular surgery pocket book as references. Houston Methodist has its own library, along with the Jesse Jones Medical library, which is steps away from the Hospital for additional medical books or references.


The Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center is associated with Weill Cornell Medical College. There are existing affiliations with the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston PA Program, University of North Texas PA Program, and Lincoln Memorial University PA Program. At the present time, PA students from these schools have a four-week rotation in the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery. This is an elective rotation.


Program entry requirements:

  1. Applicants must be a graduate of an ARC-PA accredited PA Program
  2. Eligible or have passed NCCPA certification
  3. Physician Assistant license in Texas is mandatory once admitted to the Program.
  4. Background checks and urine drug screen will be performed as part of pre-employment requirements by the institution.
  5. Current ACLS/BLS or obtained as soon as acceptance to the Program is received.
  6. Hospital privileges are mandatory prior to starting the Program.

Application Components

  1. Current Curriculum Vitae
  2. Three letters of reference sent along with other application materials
  3. Brief statement describing reasons for interest in pursuing career in Cardiovascular Surgery

Selection Criteria

  • Education
  • Academic Records
  • Written statement
  • Interviews
  • Letters of Recommendation

Credential Awarded

Certificate of completion issued by the Methodist DeBakey Heart and Vascular Center, Department of Cardiovascular Surgery. Signed by the Medical Director, Program Director, and participating faculty.

Financial Information

  • Salary: $65,000 per year
  • CME: Category one CME is available for free by participating and attending the lectures and conferences outlined in the curriculum
  • Paid Vacation
  • Medical and Dental insurance
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Life and disability insurance
  • Parking. Off-site

Application Timeline

Notification of acceptance: within one to two weeks after interviews.
Applicant’s acceptance: within two weeks of notification of acceptance to the Program.
Start Date: Adjusted based on graduation date

Send all application components to Boris Bratovich, MHA, PA-C, Program Director by mail. Any questions can be e-mailed bbratovich@houstonmethodist.org.