The University of Illinois is the first institution that introduced a fellowship in International Emergency Medicine with the aim to provide training for expertise in management of international emergency medicine and health related issues. The field itself developed out of a desire to extend available resources in leadership and experience to locations and situations that lacked the infrastructure or organization to address emergent health conditions. The role of international emergency medicine and global health as a specialty continues to expand, as the world evolves into a more global society.
International Emergency Medicine and Global Health at the University of Illinois seeks to challenge and be challenged by the international community to engage in sustainable development of global humanitarian and emergency care efforts. The program strives to provide an environment that supports efforts in humanitarian assistance, encourages development of further initiatives in international health and emergency care systems, and provides leadership and leadership opportunities to effectively administer such programs.
- Apply clinical emergency medicine concepts and skills in global health.
- Understand and apply the concepts of sustainability and capacity building in international emergency medicine and global health.
- Develop the ability to assess international health systems and emergency medical care systems and identify pertinent health issues to aid in the design of health programs that address identified needs.
- Develop the knowledge to evaluate the effectiveness and quality of global health programs.
- Establish a network for educational exchange, research, and funding.
- Develop administrative skills to organize and implement emergency and/or international health programs and integrate them into existing health systems.
General scope of program
- Disaster preparedness local and international
- International emergency medicine curriculum development
- Primary health care access in resource poor areas
- Humanitarian aid and relief work
- Collaborative efforts with NGOs
- Collaborative efforts with other fellowship programs and academic institutions
Research and academics (examples)
- Disaster and triage systems
- Demographics and health
- Health education interventions
- Health promotion
- Healthcare access and healthcare delivery strategies
- Tropical Infectious Diseases, HIV, TB
- Situational reports, executive summaries
- Assessment, evaluation, and implementation of programs
- Case reports, case studies
- Exploratory design and research
- Fellowship, residency, medical students, and public health
Training in the fellowship will allow the fellow to tailor their experience based on individual interest while providing a foundation for work in international emergency medicine and global health. Areas of focus may include EMS system development, human capacity development, disaster response, complex emergencies, humanitarian relief, and global public health. The structure of the fellowship is primarily divided into seven general areas:
- Clinical: The fellow will work as clinical faculty in the Emergency Department at a University of Illinois teaching hospital and an affiliated community hospital. The fellow will be responsible for clinical work in the ED, as well as conference and/or grand round presentations.
- Responsibility: 16 hours per week for two years.
- Serve as teaching faculty for residents and medical students rotating in the Emergency Department.
- Exposure to health issues from clinical and health delivery perspectives.
- Understand immigrant and urban populations and motivations for seeking care and challenges in navigating the U.S. health system at urban academic and community hospitals.
- International fieldwork: The fellow will be working abroad on international health projects. These international experiences are generally arranged by the fellow, with supervision of the fellowship director. These experiences will comprise of assessment and evaluation research, provision of basic and/or emergency health care, implementation of new training curriculums, public health interventions, and disaster and humanitarian response. It is expected that the fellow will be able to generate, at a minimum, a report from each project/trip. Depending upon coursework and clinical work responsibilities, the fellow may have up to 4-5 months of international experience.
- Fieldwork length varies from 1 to 8 weeks.
- Practical experience to develop skills as a public health researcher and/or expert in global health issues.
- Exposure to different aspects of conducting work and research in an international setting: from planning and coordination with organizations to communication and understanding cultural and regional influences.
- Exposure to diseases that are not commonly seen in developed countries and various health systems and structures.
- Didactic: The fellow during the course of the program will get exposure to the public health issues related to practice and international health through obtaining a Masters Degree in Public Health at the University of Illinois School of Public Health. The fellow will be responsible for the application to the Professional Enhancement Program through the school. In addition, the fellow will attend external courses specific to international health, including parasitology and health issues related to displaced populations.
- Obtain an advanced degree in public health.
- Supplement course work with specific courses dealing with large populations, i.e. refugee populations and complex humanitarian situations.
- Health Emergencies in Large Populations, a multidisciplinary and multicultural course given partnership with WHO, ICRC and academic institutions.
- Supplement course work with specific courses in tropical diseases, i.e. parasitology and epidemiology of tropical diseases.
- London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Distance Learning Program: Epidemiology and Control of Infectious Diseases in Developing Countries (IDM301) or alternate approved course
- Research: Each fellow is required to become involved in some aspect of a research project during the program. It is expected that each fellow will produce a publishable manuscript at the end of the fellowship. Collaboration is encouraged with other institutions and/or other departments. Incorporated within the research arm is exposure to grant writing and aspects of obtaining funds for projects. The research experience includes international conference attendance.
- Understand aspects of conducting research and working in an academic environment. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Research design
- Conducting literature search relevant to project content.
- Assessment, familiarization with various assessment tools, conducting an assessment and/or intervention design
- Evaluation, exposure to post assessment evaluation of study
- Data analysis, mixed methods research
- Manuscript preparation and writing.
- Education: UIC has a Center for Global Health whose mission is to improve health through education, research, and service. UIC has global health tracks for medical students and residents and a global health service learning program for UIC undergraduate students. Fellows will be expected to engage as educators for these global health students.
- Develop lectures and educational activities for students and residents.
- Participate in joint global health journal clubs.
- Administration: The fellow will engage in administrative activity in the form of organizing, planning, and implementing different aspects of projects. He/she will also obtain experience through involvement with agencies or programs within other institutions.
- Acquire the leadership skills by leading a group of health care professionals and students in an internationally focused project.
- Learn skills and components needed to navigate the logistics required in leading an international project.
- Exposure to the organizational structure of agencies involved in humanitarian or development programs globally.
- Communication: Recognizing the importance of communication in working globally, the fellow will demonstrate efforts towards a language proficiency in a language of their choosing.
- Learn the basic greetings in the country where work is conducted, as a demonstration of a collaborative spirit.
- Expose fellow to the issues and challenges of conducting research and work in international settings, reliance on translation and limitations of translation.
Duration of fellowship
The fellowship is a two-year program which incorporates the advanced degree, clinical emergency department responsibilities, and international field work. A one+ year fellowship is possible for those that have already received their MPH degree at the discretion of the fellowship director.
Within the Department of Emergency Medicine, we have created a consortium of fellowship programs, the Academic Development and Professionalism Collaborative (ADPC), to convene the various fellowship programs with a goal to provide a platform in which to enrich the fellows’ training experience and development into an academic professional at UIC. Each fellow will be involved in this endeavor. ADPC Purpose/Goals:
- Introduce fellows to academic careers in medicine.
- Provide oversight for the clinical roles of fellows.
- Provide a forum to share knowledge and collaborate amongst various subspecialties.
- Expose fellows in different programs to each other to promote camaraderie.
Primary overall objectives:
- Quarterly meetings convening all fellows and fellowship directors
- Provide core topics that apply to all fellowship programs. (Examples: mentorship, research in progress, grant writing workshop, work life balance, strategies for teaching and providing feedback)
- Establish an online module-based training program on conducting research and scholarly activity that will be completed by all fellows during their training.
Appointment of fellows
Fellowships are awarded for a two-year period beginning on July 1st. Each fellow will receive an appointment at the University of Illinois College of Medicine as a Clinical Instructor. The fellow will be responsible for 16 hours clinical and 4 hours non-clinical time per week and will be compensated according to that appointment. Benefits, CME, international travel funds, and advanced degree tuition is budgeted.
The fellowship director, along with the department of Emergency Medicine, will annually evaluate the fellowship curriculum as it relates to stated goals and objectives. Evaluation of the fellows will occur on a biannual basis throughout the duration of the program. Clinical performance in the Emergency Department will be conducted as per the Department guidelines. International fieldwork evaluation will be performed by the associated contacts.
We hold regular fellow meetings approximately twice per month depending on clinical, didactic, and travel schedule of the core fellowship group. This is an opportunity to provide immediate feedback and a mechanism to ensure progress of the fellows’ program and achievement of the core curriculum activities.
As the development of International Emergency Medicine and Global Health continues, we emphasize cooperation with other institutions on projects and sharing of ideas. We work with various NGOs and academic partners in providing medical service advisorship and international experiences. In addition, we work with several multi-disciplinary entities within the University of Illinois and the surrounding community.
As a fellowship program, we have active and current initiatives in the Caribbean, East Africa, and India. However, the UIC Center for Global Health and its partners have programs in other countries throughout the world. Past fellows have also conducted projects in other parts of Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe.
Interested candidates must be residency trained and typically board eligible/board certified in Emergency Medicine. Candidates from other specialties, i.e. Internal Medicine or Pediatrics, may be considered. However, specific training in emergency medical systems may be required during the course of the fellowship. Candidates should have a strong desire to contribute to the field of global health. Deadline for applications is October 15th, although applications after that date may be considered on a rolling basis. Interviews are generally conducted the end of October/early November, and offers will be made on the second Monday of November per the IEM Fellowship Consortium agreement. Applications must include a letter of interest, a one-page personal statement, a curriculum vitae, and three letters of recommendation. Please apply through the IEM fellowship website at www.iemfellowships.com. If you encounter any difficulties, you may email the documents to Dr. Chamberlain at the address provided below.
Stacey Chamberlain, MD, MPH
Director, International Emergency Medicine Fellowship
Department of Emergency Medicine and Center for Global Health
1940 W. Taylor, 2nd floor Chicago, IL 60612
Office: 312-355-4761 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org