The Center for Pediatric Behavioral Health at Cleveland Clinic Children’s offers a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship in Pediatric Pain Psychology. This fellowship offers advanced interprofessional training in pediatric pain psychology to an accomplished psychologist-in-training with a PhD or PsyD from an APA-accredited psychology doctoral program. 

Postdoctoral training includes clinical, teaching, and research opportunities designed to foster the professional and interprofessional development of the fellow. The focus of this fellowship is on assessment, treatment, teaching, and clinical research in the area of pediatric pain . Our goal is to prepare the fellow to function successfully as part of an interprofessional care team in an academic medical center or outpatient pediatric setting assessing and treating pain in children.

Clinical Opportunities

Clinically, an average week may consist of 2-3 inpatients (each treated 3 times weekly), participation/leadership in child group (3/week) and parent group activities (2/week), evaluating new patients in the interdisciplinary Pain Assessment Clinic (3-6 per month), outpatient diagnostic evaluations (2-3 per week), and 5 - 10 outpatient therapy hours per week. Conditions commonly referred for treatment include chronic regional pain syndrome, headache, recurrent abdominal pain, dysautonomia, and fibromyalgia. Minor rotations in related fields (e.g., inpatient C/L, sleep medicine, biofeedback) are also available. The fellow receives advanced specialized training through guided readings, shadowing all disciplines, co-therapy with other disciplines, and supervised assessment and clinical activity. Fellows are also welcome to observe other medical procedures and therapeutic interventions to supplement their learning.  

Teaching Opportunities

The fellow is involved in the training of pediatric residents who rotate through a month-long block rotation in Pediatric Rehabilitation. The fellow presents lectures to both medical residents and psychology residents. In addition, fellows teach clinical skills through residents shadowing opportunities. The fellow is also involved in informal teaching opportunities with staff and students in other disciplines through interdisciplinary administrative, clinical, and research meetings. The fellow will also receive instruction and participate in umbrella supervision for psychology residents and graduate students.

Research Activities

The fellow is expected to engage in research activities, and a portion of the weekly schedule is designated for these pursuits. At least one clinical research project and one quality improvement project are completed during the fellowship. Center staff are involved in numerous research projects and typically work with the fellow to identify an area of interest or a potential research project. Fellows may develop an independent project or join in the ongoing research of a staff member. Over the past several years, fellows have presented their work at regional and national meetings, and co-authored book chapters and peer-reviewed articles. 

Training Activities

Additional training activities include weekly Pediatric and Psychiatry Grand Rounds. The fellow is welcome to attend any presentations of interest or relevance to their training. Fellows have also taken advantage of the many Professional Development courses offered by the Division of Education. Although there are initial orientation meetings with Center staff, the majority of fellow “teaching” occurs in supervision meetings and other Center activities (e.g., monthly case conference, individual monthly didactics). Fellows typically have five hours of supervision/didactics each week, with at least two hours being individual supervision.

Incremental Learning

This fellowship is meant to be incremental. The first year will target clinical knowledge and clinical skills, while building a foundation for research and professional development. The second year of the fellowship will target expanding skill sets, professional development, and leadership skills. We encourage fellows to master a specific skill (e.g., biofeedback, hypnosis, ACT), lead an administrative project (e.g., quality improvement, designing a new component of treatment, revising an existing component of treatment), and observe other programs, within our hospital or at other hospitals, to broaden their experience in how pain is assessed and diagnosed and how treatment is delivered and measured.

Center for Pediatric Behavioral Health

The mission of the Center for Pediatric Behavioral Health is to provide clinical care to patients and families using empirically-supported diagnostic and treatment techniques, implemented with caring and respect. We provide a range of specialized psychological evaluation and treatment services to individuals from infancy through young adulthood, coordinating care with other specialists and professionals to best meet the needs of each child and family.

Staff in Behavioral Health include pediatric psychologists, fellows, counselors, technicians, and administrative support. Professional staff are involved in clinical teaching, research, and professional associations and are recognized regionally and nationally as experts in their subspecialty fields. Please refer to our Center homage  for more information.

In addition to the areas previously identified, staff psychologists have special expertise in psychological treatment of eating and feeding disorders, developmental disabilities, chronic and acute pain, coping with illness and disease, behavioral treatment of physical health problems, attentional and learning difficulties, and physical symptoms associated with stress. Diagnostic evaluations are available for children with attentional, learning, developmental, behavioral, or emotional problems, with psychological and psychoeducational testing conducted when appropriate.

Unique to many psychology services in medical settings, the Center is administratively housed within Cleveland Clinic Children's. Our offices are located across the region, on the main hospital campus, Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital for Rehabilitation Campus, and at the regional Family Health Centers. Our staff works closely with the general pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists of Cleveland Clinic Children's, and the fellow typically gains a great deal of experience working closely and collaboratively with these physicians. Specific to this fellowship, our staff performs interprofessional care, research and teaching with specialists in pain and rehabilitation, all working together through the Pediatric Pain Rehabilitation Program.

Application Process

Application deadline is December 31st. Onsite interviews will occur the last week of January or the first week of February.

Applicants must have a PhD or PsyD from an APA-accredited psychology doctoral program and have completed an APA-approved internship.

Submit a letter of interest, curriculum vita and three letters of reference to:

Ethan Benore, PhD, BCB, ABPP
Head, Center for Pediatric Behavioral Health
Program Director, Postdoctoral Fellowship in Pediatric Pain Psychology
Clinical Assistant Professor, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine
Fellow, Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback
2801 MLK JR Drive | Cleveland, OH 44104 | (216) 448-6253 | Fax (216) 448-6207

Email inquiries can be directed to benoree@ccf.org