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Statements of Excellence for Residency & Fellowship Positions on Behalf of Applicants in Surgery

Applying to a Surgical Fellowship

Surgical Fellowships

Surgeon Diversity in the Personal Statement

As a specialist in the area of diversity, I find particular joy in helping to foster the representation of all ethnicities in our medical institutions. I think it is not only healthy for America to have a medical staff that was born all over the world, but it is also healthy for the planet. Over the course of the last 20 years, I have helped hundreds of residency applicants struggling to write their own statement in English as a second or foreign language, something that can be enormously difficult. You need a very well written, eloquent statement in order to be accepted. Much of your competition uses professional help, which gives them an edge. It would be prudent for you to get help as well.

I have invested well over a decade in researching what makes the personal statement for medical residency or fellowship as effective as possible - especially in the area of Surgery. I invite you to fill out my Online Interview Form and send me your CV and/or rough draft for a free evaluationdrrobertedinger@gmail.com

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The Humanitarian Side of Surgery

Surgeons´ skill and refined knowledge is a perfect match for regions of the developing world where education and resources are scarce. More than 2 billion people across the world don´t have access to even the most basic surgical care, according to Surgeons OverSeas, a nonprofit dedicated to improving surgical care in the developing world. Right at this moment, around 56 million people in Africa need an operation. Today!

So it´s really great that you´re reading this. Perhaps you´re a medical student considering a residency program. It may not be your first, or your last, but with that education, you could really make a difference to the world. Let´s look at how you can get involved.

Children´s Surgery International

This nonprofit provides free surgical services to enhance the lives of underprivileged children made up of over 200 health care professionals and volunteers. They send surgical teams to Liberia, Mexico, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Ethiopia every year. They have also just started a new project in Minnesota to work with local orphanages. Check out the site for more information.

Training

A piece was written about the desperate need for more trained humanitarian surgeons in 2011 for World Journal of Surgery. The Stanford University Department of Surgery´s Center for Global Surgical Studies has a humanitarian surgery course. It´s a continuing medical education program to provide you with an overview of the common conditions encountered in resource-limited environments, simulations using the appropriate techniques for humanitarian settings in developing countries and training on the ins and outs if cultural considerations, surgical safety and ethics apt for these settings. Orthopedic dislocations and fracture management with traction ins and external fixation, cesarean sections, post-partum hemorrhage, burn management and hand cutting of skin grafts, burr holes, and hysterectomy skills are all covered.

If you´re near Stanford and you´re a gastrointestinal and endoscopic surgeon, you might also enjoy the international humanitarian aid surgery CME course held at Stanford University School of Medicine.

The International College of Surgeons (ICS) also has a course in Humanitarian Surgery you could attend on the shores of Lake Michigan.

What about Going on Missions When You´re a Trainee?

In February, 2016, Tyler Wallen wrote of his experiences on two surgical missions in Ecuador and Haiti, which he completed during his general surgery residency.  

In order to secure time away from his training program, Tyler had to obtain permission from his program director and the institution’s American Council on Graduate Medical Education-designated institutional officer (DIO). Once this was secured, approval for the time away and the operative experience was obtained the ACGME. Here´s more information on the application and clinical experience, which involved 24 congenital heart operations.

Preparing for a Career in Humanitarian Surgery

According to Kathryn Chu, MD, MPH, one of the first step you can take on the path to a career in a humanitarian setting is participate in a global health project as a first-year medical student. Next, learn a foreign language! Then attend global health and surgery meetings. There´s a whole plan, set out for your success. Want to know more? Find out here.

So you can get started pretty soon after you get onto a residency program, if you haven´t already. There are also a few courses at universities that specific train you to do some great work in a humanitarian setting internationally. Naturally, there are a number of NGOs that can organize a volunteer placement for you. Ready to get started? If you´d like some assistance with your personal statement of purpose so you can get onto the residency of your choice, please don´t hesitate to get in touch! Here´s to your success.