Surgical residents and general medical interns perform emergency care at the conference. (Contributed)
UAB emergency docs take teaching skills to Kenya
Doctor Scott Irvine, director of the International Emergency Medicine Fellowship in the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Emergency Medicine, spends a lot of time teaching while in the States, working with medical students and residents during duty shifts in the UAB emergency department. He got a different, expanded teaching experience while helming a conference for medical personnel in Kenya.
“This event, the Kenya Emergency Medicine and Critical Care Conference, was the first large-scale teaching symposium the International Emergency Medicine Fellowship conducted overseas,” Irvine said. “We enrolled 42 attendees for the weeklong conference – mostly Kenyan surgical residents and general medicine interns – conducting classes on
critical care and trauma.”
Kenya’s medical system is relatively advanced, but the East African nation does not have a training program in emergency medicine for its young physicians, a common situation insub-Saharan Africa. That provided an environment tailor-made for the UAB fellowship.
The fellowship was created in 2012 to equip emergency physicians to deliver medical care in the underdeveloped and developing world. This includes specialty training in infectious disease and tropical medicine, humanitarian aid, and austere medicine. Graduates are also expected to gain competency in coordinating with government and nongovernment initiatives, and to work closely with local practitioners.
Irvine was the first to complete the one-year course of study and now heads the program, which has graduated five fellows. It features a variety of independent study, research and course work, including the Gorgas Diploma Course, a comprehensive nine-week tropical medicine course in Peru run by the UAB School of Medicine. Fellows spend an additional six to eight weeks in the field, seeing patients and teaching local medical providers at the bedside.READ MORE