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2006 News Archive

AAMC Panel Discussion Spotlights Developments in India and Brazil

(posted December 21, 2006)

Francisco Campos, Brazilian Minister of Health Manpower; Kamal Dwivedi, Counselor of Science and Technology, Embassy of India; and Rosemary Fernandes, CEO, Phoenix Rose LLC, presented their visions of health manpower development in India and Brazil at the ECFMG/FAIMER Update Session at this year’s AAMC Annual Meeting in Seattle, Washington. Francisco Campos, whose Ministry is funding the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute, emphasized the relationship between the Brazilian Pro Saudé program of the Brazilian Ministry of Health to increase access to health care services throughout the country and the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute. Kamal Dwivedi talked about the interest of the Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to deepen education methodology and leadership skills of health professions educators through expansion of FAIMER Regional Institutes in that country. Ms. Fernandes currently has a project with the Indian health ministry to develop a network of community health centers in India and proposed alignment of FAIMER faculty development with India’s health center expansion efforts.

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Gates Foundation – Non-U.S. Libraries Invited to Apply for Access to Learning Award

(posted December 12, 2006)

Deadline: December 31, 2006

Applications are being accepted for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s annual Access to Learning Award. Administered by the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP), this award recognizes excellence in providing access to information through computers, at no cost to the user. The recipient will receive an award of up to $1 million. Information and application materials are available on the INASP website.

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7th International Conference on Medical Regulation - November 11-14, 2006 Wellington, New Zealand

(posted December 12, 2006)

The International Association of Medical Regulatory Authorities (IAMRA) 7th International Conference on Medical Education was hosted by the Medical Council of New Zealand from November 11-14 in Wellington, New Zealand. The conference, titled Medical Regulation: Global Issues – Shared Solutions, featured a number of presentations, panel discussions, and workshops on topics such as cultural competence, physician migration, medical education and training, public expectations, and physician regulation. As part of a program titled, The A, B, C of Regulating Doctors, FAIMER President and CEO, John J. Norcini, Ph.D., gave a presentation on Resources to Help Regulators Understand Medical Schools. Dr. Norcini’s presentation focused on current resources, needs of medical regulators, challenges to creating and maintaining international resources, and strategies for the future. To read Dr. Norcini’s presentation, click here.

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AAMC 2006 Annual Meeting

(posted December 12, 2006)

The Association of American Medical Colleges’ (AAMC) Annual Meeting was held October 27-November 1, 2006 in Seattle, Washington. The following is a list of sessions that FAIMER staff participated in as speakers and/or contributed to as authors. FAIMER staff are listed in bold.

Abstract Presentation

Clinical clerkship experiences of IMGs
Danette W. McKinley, Ph.D., John J. Norcini, Ph.D., M. Brownell Anderson, M.Ed.

Exhibit

Innovations in Medical Education (IME) exhibit
Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER)

RIME Research Paper Presentations

Assessing the underlying structure of the USMLE Step 2 test of clinical skills using confirmatory factory analysis
Andre de Champlain, Ph.D., Kimberly Swygert, Ph.D., David Swanson, Ph.D., John R. Boulet, Ph.D.

Comparing traditional and computer-based training methods for standardized patients
Anthony M. Errichetti, Ph.D., John R. Boulet, Ph.D.

Comparison of characteristics and exam performance: Performance of U.S. and non-U.S. IMGs
John R. Boulet, Ph.D., Danette W. McKinley, Ph.D., John J. Norcini, Ph.D., David B. Swanson, Ph.D.

ECFMG certification and specialty board certification among graduates of Caribbean medical schools
John R. Norcini, Ph.D., Danette W. McKinley, Ph.D., John R. Boulet, Ph.D., M. Brownell Anderson, M.Ed.

Evaluating the measures
Hugh Stoddard, Ph.D., M.Ed. (Moderator), John J. Norcini, Ph.D. (Discussant)

Examinee use of encounter time in a high-stakes SP exam
Danette McKinley, Ph.D., David B. Swanson, Ph.D., Kimberly Swygert, Ph.D., Colette Scott, M.Ed., John R. Boulet, Ph.D.

Modeling longitudinal performances of the USMLE and impact of socio-demographic characteristics
Andre F. de Champlain, Ph.D., Laurel Sample, M.A., Gerard F. Dillon, Ph.D., John R. Boulet, Ph.D.

Relationships among subcomponents of USMLE Step 2 CS and Step 2 CK exams
Polina Harik, M.A., Brian E. Clauser, Ed.D., Irina Grabovsky, Ph.D., Melissa J. Margolis, M.S., Gerard F. Dillon, Ph.D., John R. Boulet, Ph.D.

Sessions

ECFMG and FAIMER update
James A. Hallock, M.D., John J. Norcini, Ph.D., Stephen S. Seeling, J.D.

Making your work, work for you
Ann Brown, M.D. (Moderator), Page Morahan, Ph.D., Roberta Sonnino, M.D., Archana Chatterjee, M.D., Judith K. Katz, Ed.D.

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Postgraduate Medical Education Directory Coming Soon

(posted December 12, 2006)

In early 2007, a new resource will be available on the FAIMER website. A Postgraduate Medical Education Directory (PMED) will provide information on formal medical education beyond the basic medical school curriculum on a country by country basis.

For each country, the directory will provide:

There will also be information regarding:

Other categories of data will also be provided, including:

The directory should provide valuable information to a variety of users. Medical educators can compare PME in their country with other countries around the world, assessing equivalency of training. Data in the directory could serve as a stimulus for refinement or implementation of elements of PME based on models in place in other countries. Researchers and policymakers in the area of medical workforce could also find this information quite useful. Students and junior doctors seeking particular specialty training could determine where training is available and gain knowledge of the admissions and selection processes.

Compilation of all this information is a work in progress and will continue to be so once PMED is available.

FAIMER continues to seek individuals to contribute to PMED. To provide the kind of data and information that will appear in PMED, contributors must have broad knowledge of PME at the national level within their country. Individuals who believe that they may have the appropriate knowledge of PME in their country can actually participate in this effort right now by using this link to complete an on‑line survey. This survey data will be reviewed and, once verified, added to the growing database.

There is a special need for individuals who can provide narrative descriptions of their country’s PME. If you feel that you could help in this area, contact the PMED developers at inquiry@faimer.org.

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Application Deadline Extended to December 8 for the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute

(posted October 26, 2006, updated November 9, 2006, November 27, 2006, December 5, 2006)

We are pleased to announce that applications are now being accepted for the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute.

The Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute is a two-year part-time fellowship program designed for health professions faculty from Latin America who have the potential to play a key role in improving medical education at their schools. The program, conducted in Portuguese, is uniquely designed to teach education methods and leadership skills, as well as to develop strong professional bonds with other medical educators in the region. Residential sessions take place in Fortaleza, Brazil. The first residential session will be held from February 1 to 10, 2007. A proposal for a curriculum innovation project, supported by the applicant’s school, is required for consideration, and projects that demonstrate a link to improved health in the community will be given higher priority.

Deadline for application submission is December 8, 2006 (midnight, Brazil time).

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Southern Africa-FAIMER Regional Institute Planning Meeting – November 6-7, 2006 Cape Town, South Africa

(posted November 27, 2006)
Southern Africa-FAIMER Regional Institute Planning Meeting
Planning group for the Southern Africa FAIMER Regional Institute.
(click to enlarge)

Faculty representing six of the eight medical schools in South Africa, including five FAIMER Fellows, as well as a FAIMER Fellow from Uganda, representing the anticipated development of an East Africa FAIMER Regional Institute, came together on November 6-7 in Cape Town, South Africa, to discuss plans for a Southern Africa-FAIMER Regional Institute (SAFRI) for health professions educators. Attendees discussed the existing strengths of health professions education in Southern Africa, as well as key areas in which they feel it can be changed and improved. Goals of the Southern Africa-FAIMER Regional Institute, developed by participants at the meeting, will include deepening faculty knowledge and skills in leadership, planning and policy development, program evaluation, student assessment, learning and teaching methods in resource-limited environments, and education research. In addition, an important outcome of SAFRI will be greater funding and promotion of health professions education in Southern Africa.

The Southern Africa-FAIMER Regional Institute is expected to begin in May 2008. Interested individuals should monitor the FAIMER website for additional information, which will be released as it becomes available.

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Classes of 2005 and 2006 Gather at 2006 FAIMER Institute

(posted November 27, 2006)

Sixteen 2006 Fellows and 11 2005 Fellows came to Philadelphia in September and October, respectively, for the 2006 FAIMER Institute. Fellows came from 12 countries in Latin America, Africa, and South Asia, representing 22 health professions schools. Highlights of the Institute include the poster session presentations of 2005 Fellows’ innovation projects and Jerry and Monique Sternin’s International Medical Education Day workshop on Positive Deviance.

To see photos from the 2006 Institute, click here.

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The Network: Towards Unity for Health Conference – September 9-13, 2006 Ghent, Belgium

(posted November 27, 2006)

The crisis in human resources for health was highlighted at the annual conference of The Network: Towards Unity for Health (TUFH), recently held in Ghent, Belgium (September 9-13), where the conference theme was improving social accountability in education, research and service delivery. Although numerous health-related topics were discussed, the shortage of health professionals, including physicians and nurses in many developing countries was of particular concern. Effective service delivery requires good governance and a system of accountability – one that better manages and balances the global market of health professionals. FAIMER was represented at this meeting by Jack Boulet, Ph.D., Director of Research and Data Resources.

FAIMER staff is currently engaged in several research projects aimed at quantifying the global migration of physicians as well as understanding the underlying reasons for emigration. These activities, in conjunction with various Network resources, can ultimately help to ensure that the global market for health professionals does not deprive poor communities of essential medical services.

More information about the meeting in Ghent, including presentations, is available at http://www.the-networktufh.org/conferences/previousconferences.asp. The next Network:TUFH meeting will be in Kampala, Uganda, September 15-20, 2007 (http://www.the-networktufh.org/conferences/futureconferences.asp).

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Humanitarian Healthcare Conference: Challenges and Opportunities in Disaster Relief - September 8-10, 2006 Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH

(posted November 17, 2006)

The concepts of human capacity building featured prominently in the discussions of the Humanitarian Healthcare Conference held this fall at Dartmouth College. Over 20 aid agencies and organizations gathered in Hanover, NH for two days to discuss ways to improve humanitarian relief efforts. The meeting, jointly sponsored by Dartmouth College, Harvard University, and the International Rescue Committee, was the inaugural event of an anticipated annual conference to be alternately hosted by Dartmouth and Harvard. FAIMER Education Assistant Vice President William Burdick participated in the two-day conference, serving on the Human Resources workgroup led by Karen Hein, of Child Fund International.

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Simon to Join FAIMER as Senior Scholar

(posted October 26, 2006)

Frank A. Simon, M.D. has been appointed to the position of Senior Scholar of the Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER). Dr. Simon will assume his duties on January 2, 2007.

Dr. Simon comes to FAIMER with extensive experience as an author, educator, administrator, and physician. He has held several positions at the American Medical Association (AMA) including Director of the Division of Undergraduate Medical Education Policy and Standards, Director of the Division of Graduate Medical Education, and Secretary to the Council on Medical Education. He also served as Co-Secretary of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), sponsored by the AMA and the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

Prior to joining the AMA, Dr. Simon served as Vice Dean and Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ), Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, where he was responsible for all academic operations. He has also served in positions with the AAMC Northeast Group on Educational Affairs and the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME), and is Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

Dr. Simon received his undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his medical degree from New York University School of Medicine. Following his residency in Pediatrics at Johns Hopkins Hospital, he served two years as Chief of Pediatrics at Craig Air Force Base.

"FAIMER is pleased to have recruited Dr. Simon, and we believe that he will be an excellent addition to the staff in advancing FAIMER’s mission," said James A. Hallock, M.D., Chair, FAIMER Board of Directors, and President and CEO, ECFMG.

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NBME® Evaluation Fellowship Program

(posted October 26, 2006)

This fall, FAIMER® and the National Board of Medical Examiners® (NBME) continue their collaboration to expand the NBME’s Evaluation Fellowship Program. The NBME is an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides high-quality examinations for the health professions, including the United States Medical Licensing Examination™ (USMLE™). The NBME’s Evaluation Fellowship Program, with funding provided by FAIMER, allows international participants to study aspects of NBME’s operations, such as test administration, medical school services, psychometrics and scoring, test design and development, test construction, and information technology. The goal of the program is to enable Fellows to serve as resident experts in such topics at their home country institutions.

The NBME recently welcomed to Philadelphia its second Evaluation Fellow from the National Medical Examination Center in Beijing, People’s Republic of China. Mr. Chen Shengyu arrived approximately one month ago and will remain in residence until mid-December 2006. Mr. Chen is a colleague of Ms. He Ju (Julia), the first Evaluation Fellow hosted by the NBME, who completed her own residency in 2005. Upon arriving in Philadelphia, Mr. Chen completed an orientation period, during which he met with staff of NBME, the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG), and the Clinical Skills Evaluation Collaboration (CSEC). In addition, he attended a faculty development workshop on clinical skills, led by Ann King and Ruth Hoppe. In the coming months, Mr. Chen will be embedded among CSEC teams, where he will become familiar with case development procedures and quality assurance processes. Mr. Chen will complete a project during his residence as well. He is being supervised by Ann King and Anthony LaDuca from NBME’s Measurement Consulting Services.

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4th Asia Pacific Medical Education Conference (APMEC) February 8-11, 2007, Singapore

(posted October 6, 2006)

Following the overwhelming success of the past three APMECs, the Medical Education Unit, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, will once again be organizing and hosting the 4th APMEC from February 8-11, 2007 at the National University of Singapore, Singapore.

The theme for the 4th APMEC is Outcomes in Medical Education – Trends, Issues, Priorities, Strategies. Several world renowned medical educators have accepted invitations to speak and run workshops at the conference.

The National University of Singapore reports that, as in past years, this conference has attracted considerable local and international participation, with 350 to 400 medical educators from and beyond the Asian region expected to attend.

Early bird conference registration closes on November 15, 2006. For more information, please visit the conference website.

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AMEE 2006

(posted October 3, 2006)

The Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) annual meeting is recognized as the largest annual international event focusing entirely on medical and health care professions education.

The 2006 conference, held September 14-18, 2006 in Genoa, Italy, focused on teaching and learning in medicine, medical education, and health care needs and assessment. FAIMER was well represented at AMEE. Staff participated in the following workshops, symposia, and short communications:

Workshops

A practical guide to setting defensible performance standards on OSCEs and clinical skills examinations
André F. De Champlain (National Board of Medical Examiners), John R. Boulet, and Marta van Zanten

Assessing the written communication skills of physicians
Thomas Rebbecchi (Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG)), John R. Boulet, and Gerald Whelan (ECFMG)

Mini CEX: A method for assessment and feedback in training
John J. Norcini and Reinhard Westkämper (IAWF, University of Bern, Switzerland)

Work based assessment: Practical lessons from experience with a large national work based assessment programme
Helena Davies (University of Sheffield, UK), Lesley Southgate (University of London, UK), and John J. Norcini

Symposium

The assessment of work
John J. Norcini (Chairperson), Dale Dauphinée (Medical Council of Canada), Bob Galbraith (National Board of Medical Examiners), Val Wass (University of Manchester, UK), and Cees van der Vleuten (University of Maastricht, Netherlands)

Short Communications

Acculturation issues for immigrant physicians
Gerald Whelan*, Marta van Zanten, Eleanor Fitzpatrick, and Barbara Hoekje

Clinical education of graduates of European medical schools
Danette W. McKinley*, John J. Norcini, and M. Brownell Anderson

Development of a compulsory national clinical skills examination in Peru
William P. Burdick*, Pedro Mendoza, Peter Scoles, and John J. Norcini

Do international medical graduates contribute to a culturally and linguistically diverse physician workforce in the United States?
Marta van Zanten* and John R. Boulet

* Presenter

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Medical Education in Iran Undergoing Reform

(posted September 26, 2006)
Iran conference attendees
John J. Norcini, Ph.D., (seated, 4th from left) pictured with conference attendees.
(click to enlarge)

Medical education in Iran is moving towards curricular reform and competency-based postgraduate medical education. As part of this reform, FAIMER President, John J. Norcini, Ph.D., received an invitation from the Council for Graduate Medical Education of Iran to run a series of workshops on assessment.

In July 2006, faculty from universities of medical sciences throughout Iran attended a week long conference held in Tehran. Also in attendance were Dr. Mohagheghi, Deputy Minister for Educational and Student Affairs of the Ministry of Health and Medical Education; Dr. Einollahi, Chair of the Council for Graduate Medical Education; and a number of other important educational authorities.

Dr. Norcini conducted five workshops on key issues in assessment for participants who were members of Curriculum Development Committees and Chairs of the medical specialties Boards of Examiners. He also conducted three plenary sessions for faculty from Tehran University of the Medical Sciences and Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences. The Ministry of Health and Medical Education also attended the plenary sessions.

Meetings to discuss possibilities for collaboration were held with Dr. Larijani, President of Tehran University of the Medical Sciences; Dr. Hosseini, Vice-Chancellor for Educational Affairs, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences; and other representatives from both universities.

Dr. Norcini noted that workshop attendees were knowledgeable, committed to high quality assessment, and enthusiastic (see picture) and that, going forward, there is a good basis for collaboration in a wide range of areas.

Travel to the conference was funded by the Joint Program Review Mission of the World Health Organization. Drs. Zali, President of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, and Hosseini, Vice-Chancellor for Educational Affairs, provided the facilities for the conference.

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EfH: Focus on Community-based Health Education

(posted September 14, 2006)

Education for Health (EfH) is the journal of Network: Towards Unity for Health (TUFH). First published in 1988 and originally titled The Annals of Community-Oriented Education, the journal has served as a main source of discussion and dissemination of research and scholarly work related to Network: TUFH mission and objectives. Starting in 2006, with volume 19:1 of EfH, the journal has encouraged submission of manuscripts in five major topic areas:

  1. describe innovative models for the community-based education of health professionals, and research into the effectiveness of these models;
  2. describe models of community-based health care delivery and demonstrate the impact and effectiveness of these models;
  3. describe programs and research on collaborations between academia and health services, with the objective of community health improvement;
  4. describe and demonstrate multi- and interdisciplinary approaches to health professions education and service delivery;
  5. describe models and systems of education, research, and service delivery that link, and have implications for, both developing and developed countries.

The journal specifically encourages papers on community-based health education and research about and from developing countries.

In 2004, EfH obtained status as a Medline journal. This has contributed to an increased number of manuscript submissions over the past two years. This growth and the continued attention to serving the international community related to research and educational evaluation studies has resulted in transitioning to an on-line journal. The new publishing format will allow for open access for all readers, on-line submission, much wider and more rapid dissemination of information, and opportunities for news and article alerts to engage and inform readers.

The future of EfH is based in collaboration to increase the breadth and quality of the journal and to appeal to a larger audience of health service providers, public health practitioners, policy makers, and researchers. Currently the journal is informed and supported by: Network: TUFH; the Department of Medical Education, Maastricht University, The Netherlands; FAIMER; Global Health through Education, Training and Service (GHETS); Pan American Health Association/WHO; Department of Family Medicine, University of New Mexico; and the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford. Additionally, special theme issues are being developed, such as "Integration of Medicine and Public Health in Practice through a Unity of Purpose and Action" (to be published in 2007).

For more information on the journal, its content, and instructions for manuscript submission, please visit "Education for Health" at: www.the-networktufh.org/home/index.asp.

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Brazilian Ministry of Health Signs Agreement to Fund Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute

(posted August 11, 2006)
Dr. Francisco Campos
Dr. Francisco Campos describes his experience with change management in the Brazilian government's Pro Saúde project to GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute Fellows in Mumbai.

The Ministry of Health in Brazil has signed an agreement to fund the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute. Management of the funding will be provided by the Pan American Health Organization. The agreement was drafted after Francisco Campos, Brazil’s Secretary for Health Manpower, attended the planning meeting of the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute in May, 2006, and soon after accompanied Bill Burdick and Page Morahan, Co-Directors of the Philadelphia FAIMER Institute, to the GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute in Mumbai. In Mumbai, Dr. Campos observed the Regional Institute in action, and participated in the session on Change Management. Capacity building in health manpower is a priority of the government of Brazil and fits with the recent Pro Saúde Program to increase access to primary health care throughout the country. The experience of Regional Institute development in India will be used to support the development process in Brazil. Further South-South collaboration efforts between South America, Africa, and India are being pursued using the Brazil-Mumbai interaction as a model.

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Early Registration Deadline Nears for IAMRA's 7th International Conference on Medical Regulation

(posted August 8, 2006)

The deadline for early registration discounts for the International Association of Medical Regulatory Authorities’ 7th International Conference on Medical Regulation, "Medical Regulation: Global Issues - Shared Solutions," which will be conducted in New Zealand Nov. 11-14 is Sept. 15. The biennial event draws hundreds of attendees from around the world and features an array of educational events and forums for medical regulators to share information and best practices in international medical regulation.

Among the many topics speakers will address during the four-day conference: international trends in medical regulation, the movement of doctors from country to country, global and emerging threats and ensuring cultural differences do not jeopardize effective medical interventions.

Social events include tours to various parts of New Zealand, including a trip to the locations where "Lord of the Rings" was filmed. For more information or to register, visit www.iamra2006.co.nz/index.htm.

NOTE: James A. Hallock, M.D., Chair of the FAIMER Board of Directors and President and CEO of the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) and John J. Norcini, Ph.D., President and CEO of FAIMER are conference speakers.
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GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute

(posted August 2, 2006)
click to enlarge
A returning Fellow presents the results of her curriculum innovation project at an interactive poster session to this small group which then discusses the project. More >>

Sixteen new Fellows and 24 returning Fellows met at King Edward Memorial Hospital - Seth Gordhandas Sunderdas Medical College (GSMC) in Mumbai, India, from June 13-19, 2006 for the second GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute. One of the highlights was the poster presentation session, a highly interactive day during which returning Fellows presented and discussed the curriculum innovation projects they have been working on since the first session of the Regional Institute last year. Projects included: a survey of teaching methods for cardiopulmonary resuscitation in Maharastra, which found that only 35% of schools used mannequins; a pilot program in problem-based learning; and use of checklists for formative assessment in performance assessment of occupational therapy students. Another highlight was a discussion of concepts related to scholarship and professional advancement by Nilima Kshirsagar, Dean of KEM-GS Medical Center, and Page Morahan, Co-Director, FAIMER Institute. The GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute is under the direction of Dr. Avinash Supe, Professor and Head of the Medical Education and Technology Unit and GI Surgical Unit at Seth G.S. Medical College, and a member of the Institute 2002 class.

Regional Institute Perspectives

Adkoli Balachandra, Observer
Medical Education Unit, All-India Institute of Medical Sciences
Chandrakant Patankar, Faculty
Department of Microbiology, KEM-GSMC

Adkoli Balachandra, Observer

Dear friends,

The GSMC-FAIMER meeting gave an opportunity to strengthen our ties, and to look forward. Though I was not directly involved in taking a session, I enjoyed sitting back, observing, facilitating group process and sharing some lighter moments with the group. More than that, I was humbled by the warm hospitality extended by everyone in the GSMC team.

I also learned much from Bill Burdick and Page Morahan to restrain faculty intervention so as to encourage and empower the participants for self-directed learning.

It was a great break from routine, a stress buster, a rejuvenating experience and great fun, and what else is needed?

Thanks for everything. Well done GSMC team!!


Chandrakant Patankar, Faculty

I underwent metamorphosis as an educator over the past year as I worked on the conception, birth and delivery of the GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute. The continuous discussions and deliberations between team members of the two institutions (FAIMER and Seth GS Medical College [GSMC] in Mumbai, India) helped me understand the process of evolving a working partnership between two organisations that are culturally different but inspired by common goal. This on-going cross-cultural experience has enriched my vision of the world.

I joined the Medical Education Technology (MET) unit of Seth GS Medical College & King Edward Memorial Hospital in 1995. MET had been active since 1993, training over 2000 medical school faculty from Mumbai and across the state of Maharashtra (population 90 million), with workshops on management, research, medical sciences, and other education projects. We have experimented with designs and methods for teaching these workshops and training modules through continuous evaluation of our efforts.

The discussions to develop the GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute were goal-oriented and sharply focused on feasibility. Interactions with Bill Burdick, Avinash Supe and my colleagues in the MET unit during this process enabled me to make contributions that became more purposeful and fruitful. I can better appreciate the difference between the desirable and doable objectives. It has also greatly increased my degree of empathy for those doing this type of development.

Use of the GSMC-FAIMER listserv, GSMC Yahoo! discussion group, and WebCT has given me greater expertise in electronic interactions. All these were new to me. As a result of this experience, I have been able to start two additional Yahoo! groups on my own, "medicaleducationunit" for our MET group and "fungushunters" for my colleagues in mycology, both of which are now active electronic discussion groups. The Internet has become a daily part of my professional activities. GSMC-FAIMER Regional Institute brought new people, new ideas, new vision and a new dimension to my life. It helped me explore what was within and trained me to acquire and assimilate what was without!

Working with Institute Fellows on their curriculum innovation projects has also been a treasure of learning. Conceptualisation, development and implementation of their education projects through continuous interactions with Institute Fellows and Institute faculty was a new experience. I was introduced to the program evaluation concept of the "Logic Model" for the first time. Discussions with the fellows helped refine my own concepts and thoughts on medical education. I find myself much more confident in dealing with project planning, development, and evaluation. This experience has benefited my work in other areas as well.

Networking with like-minded educators across the country was one of the stated goals of the Institute. Through my role on the Institute faculty, I am part of that envisaged network. Free exchange of useful information across India in the field of medical education has been possible through the Institute. Working with our GSMC-FAIMER Institute Fellows has enhanced my skills of communication, teamwork, fellowship and scholarship. I am pleased that I could contribute to the growth of medical educators in India.

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FAIMER President Participates in 3rd Indonesian Medical Education Meeting and Expo

(posted July 26, 2006)

John J. Norcini, Ph.D., FAIMER President, served as a guest speaker and faculty member at the 3rd Indonesian Medical Education Meeting and Expo that was held on June 5-7, 2006 in Bali, Indonesia. Dr. Norcini taught in one workshop entitled Assessment of Clinical Competencies/Mini-CEX and made presentations at the Clinical Competence Assessment and Clinical Specialist Training symposia. He also participated in a Meet the Expert session.

The meeting and expo is a forum of the Association of the Indonesian Medical Education Institutions and is used to share experience and knowledge among medical schools in Indonesia. Led by the deans of the medical schools, the Association is working to improve the quality of medical education and to stimulate licensure and accreditation in the country.

Indonesia ranks fourth in world population, with about 250 million people, and has approximately 52 operating medical schools.

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FAIMER Represented at World Health Organization's SEDCAP Planning Meeting

(posted July 26, 2006)

John Boulet, Ph.D., FAIMER Director of Research and Data Resources, participated in the World Health Organization (WHO) sponsored meeting on strengthening educational capacity in the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS in five African countries (SEDCAP), May 29-31, 2006, in Gaborone, Botswana. In addition to Dr. Boulet, Professor Sam Luboga (WHO Uganda) and Dr. Dan Kayongo (University of Transkei, South Africa), both former FAIMER Institute Fellows, were in attendance.

The goal of SEDCAP is to strengthen the human and institutional resources of schools of health professionals in Botswana, Burkina Faso, Malawi, Mozambique, and Uganda. By doing this, their graduates will be better equipped to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS.

Hosted by the Department of Nursing Education of the University of Botswana, WHO Collaborating Centre, the event attracted more than 60 attendees, including deans and members of the faculty development committees in the project countries, WHO staff, partners, and donor organizations. Presentations were made to familiarize all participants with the educational capacity and performance needs of the local African institutions, and small group discussions were held aimed at delimiting the relevant local educational challenges and developing specific needs assessment measurement tools. On the final day, country teams were formed and asked to devise country-specific action plans. These detailed plans will be used to initiate the second phase of the SEDCAP project.

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FAIMER Research Scientist Leads Roundtable on Brain Drain

(posted July 26, 2006)

Danette W. McKinley, Ph.D., Research Scientist, led a roundtable session at the Global Health Council’s 33rd Annual International Conference on Global Health on June 1, 2006 in Washington, D.C. Dr. McKinley’s presentation, Measuring Brain Drain: Combining Data Sources for Effective Analysis, examined the migration of highly skilled health care workers from less developed countries to more developed countries.

The session was based on a current investigation describing the characteristics and workforce pathways of physicians educated in sub-Saharan Africa who applied for ECFMG Certification between 1990 and 2004. Several data sources were used to quantify the emigration of physicians educated in Africa to the United States over this 15-year period. The study provides an example of how a combination of data sources can be used to inform "brain drain" discussions.

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FAIMER Holds Symposium at 12th International Ottawa Conference

(posted July 26, 2006)

FAIMER staff members presented on various research projects and initiatives at the FAIMER Symposium of International Medical Education Issues at the 12th International Ottawa Conference on Clinical Competence, May 20-24, 2006 in New York City. Topics included: accreditation processes throughout the world, characteristics of the world’s medical schools, migration from Africa to the United States, and immigration from South Asia. Other presentations by FAIMER staff included a workshop on the Mini-CEX conducted by John Norcini, Ph.D., FAIMER President; a workshop on building a state-of-the-art clinical skills simulation center co-presented by John Boulet, Ph.D., FAIMER Director of Research and Data Resources; and presentations at the National Board of Medical Examiners symposium, United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE): Performance of International Medical Graduates.

The 12th Annual Ottawa Conference was the largest Ottawa Conference to date, with over 1,000 medical school faculty, health educators, policy makers, and researchers from around the world in attendance.

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Dr. Saoji and Dr. Vyas
Dr. Saoji (left) and Dr. Vyas (right)

First 2005 IFME Fellows in Residence at UIC

(posted July 5, 2006)

Vivek Saoji, M.B.B.S., M.S., and Rashmi Vyas, M.B.B.S., M.D., attended a summer session at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) in May. Drs. Saoji and Vyas are pursuing Master’s in Health Professions Education degrees at UIC through FAIMER’s International Fellowship in Medical Education (IFME) program.

The IFME program has been redesigned to enable selected graduates of the FAIMER Institute to pursue advanced degrees in health professions education at institutions that have distance learning programs with a minimal residential requirement. This alignment of the Institute and IFME programs creates a pathway for educational leadership in international health professions education. Drs. Saoji and Vyas are the first Fellows of the redesigned IFME program to complete a residential session for their Master’s program.

Dr. Saoji is a Professor, Department of Surgery, and Dean of Bharati Vidyapeeth Medical College in India. Dr. Vyas is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physiology at Christian Medical College, Vellore, in India. Both are members of the 2003 class of the FAIMER Institute.

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Medical Educators-FAIMER Staff Plan for Launch of Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute

(posted July 5, 2006)

William Burdick, M.D., M.S.Ed., FAIMER’s Director of Education, and FAIMER Institute Faculty Member, Stewart Mennin, Ph.D., traveled to Universidad Federal do Ceara in Fortaleza, Brazil, in May to meet with local medical educators about the upcoming Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute. The planning session included a number of FAIMER Institute Fellows from South America, including Henry Campos, M.D., M.Sc., Ph.D., Dean, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal do Ceara, who will direct the new Institute. The Brazilian Secretary for Health Manpower, the Associate Director of the Brazilian Medical Education Association, and representatives from local medical schools were also in attendance.

The Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute, expected to begin in February 2007, is FAIMER’s third such collaboration. Regional Institutes in Mumbai, India, and Ludhiana, India, began in 2005 and 2006, respectively. Based on the model of the FAIMER Institute, established in Philadelphia in the United States in 2001, Regional Institutes provide opportunities for international medical school faculty to learn education methods and leadership skills, and to develop professional relationships. Applications to participate in the Brazil-FAIMER Regional Institute will be accepted beginning in the fall of 2006.

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Perspectives from Mendoza

(posted July 5, 2006)

The School of Medical Sciences, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, in Mendoza, Argentina, hosted the XI International Meeting of Medical Education on March 29-30, 2006. Organized by Dr. Ana Lía Vargas, a 2001 Fellow of the FAIMER Institute and former Institute Global Faculty Advisor, the meeting was attended by more than 40 individuals, including faculty from medical schools in Chile and Argentina. FAIMER representatives, John Boulet, Ph.D., Director of Research and Data Resources, and Marta van Zanten, M.Ed., Research Associate, also participated. Like their predecessors in 2003 and 2005, the conference centered on the assessment of clinical skills.

Dr. Boulet rated the conference as highly successful in promoting FAIMER’s mission of providing opportunities for the cross-cultural exchange of experience and expertise in the fields of physician training and assessment. Participants gave very positive feedback to the meeting organizer and expressed appreciation for the opportunity to network with each other and enhance their skills in clinical competence evaluation, as reflected in the feedback of Kristina Weil, M.D., Institute 2002 Fellow:

I traveled to Mendoza with two other faculty members from Universidad de los Andes (Santiago, Chile), who are working very hard on OSCE…and with two other Chilean medical doctors from the Medical School of Universidad del Desarrollo, where I am also teaching. It was a very good opportunity to share experiences and to promote new teaching techniques and FAIMER in Chile. All four colleagues were fascinated by the course and increased their interest in medical education. We are strongly thinking on the organization of a similar meeting in Santiago de Chile, probably next year.

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FAIMER President Delivers Plenary at 2006 Medical Education Conference

(posted July 5, 2006)

FAIMER President, John J. Norcini, Ph.D., was Keynote Speaker at a Plenary Session entitled Future of Assessment Across the Education Continuum at the 2006 Medical Education Conference, held April 29 – May 3 in London, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Norcini presented an overview of assessment in medical education at this year’s conference, which was themed Partnerships for Improving Health Care.

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FAIMER President at MedBiquitous

(posted July 5, 2006)

John J. Norcini, Ph.D., FAIMER President, served as a panelist at the MedBiquitous Consortium Annual Conference, held April 25-27, 2006, in Baltimore, Maryland. During the Self Assessment and Quality Improvement Panel, Dr. Norcini with representatives of the National Board of Medical Examiners discussed innovative uses of self assessment for improving quality of care.

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[last update: September 20, 2007]