Friday, October 24, 2008

ALTERNATE PATHWAYS FOR FOREIGN MEDICAL GRADUATES

Dear Friends:
One of the aspect or cause of our failure to get into residency program here in USA is wasting of time in observerships. The programs don’t consider observerships/research/externship as clinical experience for foreign medical graduates because whatever you do they think it’s not a quality clinical experience. So I don’t know how much it really helps. It might help also depending on individual cases but it is my opinion that if a USA degree is mentioned like a master’s degree or strictly clinical experience like surgical assistant or something like that, it would look good on resume/CV. Honestly if you are in USA for more than 1 year just doing observership, its not gonna help. If you in USA for 3-6 months waiting for match or applying for match than it’s a good idea to do some observership/externship. People usually say observership is helpful, well it indeed but not for 2-3 years, program director might have applicants who did master or some post grad degree while in USA, so they would prefer applicants with some educational/academic activities rather than just observership/research etc.. I hope I am clear now. I have seen it myself and hopefully you will also be able to see the change in your CV when you do a USA degree.
The other thing is when you are in USA don’t waste time get some diploma or something so that even if you could not get residency for whatever reason you should always have a back up plan and something you can do. And lastly my friends “USA is not the end of world, wasting years and years in search of residency and driving cabs or working at gas station does not worth it”. If you have resources then please travel somewhere else and get your goals over there. So bottom line is “Don’t waste time while staying in USA waiting for residency.”
I am going to mention some link so that you can try them and find out, what is good for you.
1. Optometry, is a degree which lets you practice as an optometrist and thinking long term you might get residency in ophthalmology. There is a school in Massachusetts, New England School of optometry, which lets foreign medical grads. finish the degree in just 2 years.
The New England College of Optometry
Association of Schools of Optometry
2. Master in Public Health, (MPH) It helps you getting a master degree and residency in occupational health, preventive medicine and even family practice. One example is a link below, there are almost 26-30 schools of public health in USA and it’s easy to get admission. Search the web for school of public health.
The Univ. of Texas-Houston-School of Public Health
American Public Health Association, links for all Public health schools
3. Surgical Assistants, certified surgical assistant get good pay and great clinical experience.
National Surgical Assistant Association
American board of surgical assistants
4. Master/Ph.D. degree in any basic Medical sciences like Pathology, pharmacology etc… this is offered by a lot of university programs and it’s not very hard to get into. It definitely helps in getting residency and a job. One example is a link below, there are 100’s of universities offering masters programs. search the web for your program of choice
The University of Texas-Houston Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
5. Non-accredited fellowships in USA, these are fellowships offered by different intitutions like post doc research fellowships and clinical fellowships. US graduates don’t do these because they are not accredited and don’t make the eligibility criteria for board exams purposes. Some of the examples are below and you can find opportunities like these on web. The clinical fellowships require you to have ECFMG certificate, so that they could issue you a institutional permit, to work with the patients. Post Doc research fellowships could be in any field, pharmacology, pathology, biochem etc.. Clinical fellowships are in CV surgery, ENT and other subspecialties.
MD Anderson Cancer center, Houston, Texas
Texas Heart Institute, Houston, Texas
There is also another option of “School of perfusion technology”. The perfusionist makes good money and it’s a technical work. Basically it is the person who runs the By-pass machine during cardio-thoracic surgeries. It’s a good field but schools in USA don’t emcourage FMGs to do this course but there is no harm in trying.
Texas Heart Institute, Houston, Texas, look for perfusion technology
“Physician Assistant” is also another option but most schools require that you have BS degree from USA to enter into the school.
American academy of Physician assistants
6. PG medical education in the world: Follow the following links for post graduate medical education in Canada, England, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.
Australian Medical Council
College of Medicine of South Africa
NZ med jobs
New Zealand (NZ) medical council NZMC
Royal College of Physicians London
Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh -
Royal College Ireland Royal College of Surgeons-IRE
The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada - Homepage
The Royal College of Surgeons of England
Some information based website done by docs in New Zealand, are also good.
Oversaes doctors
Oversaes doctors
I hope it helps all of you and please if you find any information about some other better alternate things in USA pls. email me and I will post it on web. My friends we have to help each other by spreading the information don’t keep the info to yourself spread it. It might help somebody like you.

10 comments:

Vanessa said...

Thank you for this article, I'm right now dealing with all this things, It was really helpful!!

munawwar said...

thnx for giving this much detail.but sorry i m bit confused.i m indian ,going to complete my graduation soon.i wana to do pg in paedia or radio.i know bat usmle,plab n amc exam to get pg admission.but i want to ask alternarive to exam to get admission in pg n side by side doing some part time job.so plz any one help me wt shd i do?i can go to any country in europ.help me out plz.

pat said...

Thanks for your time and efforts in providing this valuable information. GOD bless you.

Manuel Lora said...

thank you. where do U.S. Medical graduates (with not so good CVs and scores) go for ENT residency programs? which is their plan B?

Anonymous said...

I agree every bit of what you have said.I have wasted 6 years trying to get into residency and now I hate myself for doing it. In the meantime,I got myself a MPH.Even after knowing Pd's first had, done 3-6 months of observership didnt help.My problem was an attempt each in step 1 and 2 and old grad.Just giving up on residency and moving on with my life.But I agree with your advice!

Akintunde said...

Hello please do i need to take USMLE/MCEEs exams to be able to get a job after studying an MPH in the US/Canada? Please need response urgently.Thanks.

Akintunde said...

Can I get a job after studying MPH without doing the USMLE exams? Please need a response urgently

Nadia said...

Yes you can work and you don't hav to pass USMLE. You can also do masters in counseling and get the license in mental health field...you can have your own practice.

Nadia said...

Yes you can do MPH without passing USMLE. You can also do masters in counseling or in any mental health field.

Osy said...

Hi, I am currently in the Netherlands doing a PhD in Pharmacoepidemiology as well as a concurrent Masters in Pharmacovigilance. I already have MPH from Belgium. Do you think it will be easier for me to get a preventive medicine residency?