The residents of the Department of Anesthesiology have opportunities to explore the field in diverse settings. With our global health initiatives, we expand that access to different countries, so that residents may experience care within the context of different cultural settings and resource access. Learn more about residents' past international experiences to Malawi, Uganda, India and China. A new opportunity for our residents is participation in Northwestern's Global Health Clinical Scholars Program (See below).
McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University instituted a Global Health Clinical Scholars Program where residents and fellows learn competency-based global health in order to delivery clinical care in resource-limited settings worldwide. In addition to attending lectures and completing assignments, residents complete a month of international field experience. At the end of the two-year program, participants earn a certificate. In 2017, three CA-3 residents (Anameti Usoro, Jillian Kent and Nader Tondravi) participated in the program. All three CA-3 residents rotated at Hospital Materno Dr. Reynaldo Almánzar, Villa Mella, Santo Domingo Norte, Dominican Republic for one month. In 2018, three more CA-3 residents will rotate at the same hospital for a month (Benjamin Johnson, Chris Schilf and Milly Turakhia). The residents will be accompanied by two Northwestern Anesthesiologists (Feyce Peralta and J. Brad Bavaro) and one Gynecologist (Magdy Milad).
In February 2016 Department of Anesthesiology faculty, Feyce Peralta, MD, and CA-3 resident, Katherine Koniuch, MD (pictured below), completed a 10-day global health rotation at Centro Cristiano de Servicios Médicos Hospital La Esperanza, Dominican Republic. Dr. Peralta has worked with a non-for-profit called "Project Ear", which provides anesthesia care for adults and children undergoing ENT procedures. Project EAR is a non-profit, humanitarian outreach program that provides otolaryngological health care to the underserved population of the Dominican Republic. Since 1995, Project EAR has provided medical care to patients in the Dominican Republic. Reconstructive surgeries are conducted with a team from the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery team. The patients who receive care are screened, prepared and followed-up with by native Dominican Republic otolaryngologist Roberto Batista, MD. Project EAR is an established program that not only delivers health care during these trips, but also sustain a healthcare model to the underserved population of the Dominican Republic throughout the year. Faculty from Northwestern University’s Department of Anesthesiology began their participation in Project EAR in 2008.
The goals and objectives as an anesthesia provider in Project EAR are to:
- Provide cost-effective, quality anesthesia care in a resource-scarce environment
- Emphasize the importance of physical examination in the perioperative setting
- Maintain ethical principles when working with staff and patients from different cultures
- Organize and lead a humanitarian medical mission in a developing country
The following are some estimates of the over 1,000 people helped by Project EAR:
- 650+ otologic procedures.
- 22 cochlear implants.
- Approximately 200 tonsillectomies.
- 100+ plastic surgery cases.
Resident Rotation Objectives:
- Gain experience in delivery of anesthesia services to children in developing nations
- Increase understanding of international healthcare systems
- Broaden his/her understanding of cultural differences among various patient populations
- Strengthen communication and teaching skills.
- Encourage sensitivity to cultural differences.
- Raise awareness and improve management of medical resources and treatment options.
- Learn to be more flexible and creative in clinical and technical problem solving.
The No Pain Labor & Delivery-Global Health Initiative (NPLD-GHI) is a non-profit organization associated with the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Founded in 2006 by anesthesiologist Ling Qun Hu, MD at Northwestern University, the program focuses on correcting the unnecessarily high caesarean delivery rate and the poor utilization of neuraxial labor analgesia in China. The first trip was launched in Dr. Hu’s home city, Hangzhou, China in 2008. The organization uses a multidisciplinary approach to achieve its goal of increasing the usage of epidural neuraxial labor analgesia by 10% by establishing 10 obstetric anesthesia training centers over a 10 year period (by 2018). NPLD-GHI assists local hospitals in the establishment of self-sustaining obstetric anesthesia systems that will allow them to provide safe and effective labor analgesia. The organization uses traditional educational methods, conferences, books, publications, annual one-week visits, bedside education follow-ups, daily goal setting, daily debriefing and a self-developed web-based educational program (Baby on Board). Clinical outcomes tracking has demonstrated that this methodology has significantly improved maternal and neonatal outcomes.
Residents Stephen Kolb, Michael Lee and Kristine Paik pictured with the founder, Ling Qun Hu
This multidisciplinary, education-oriented organization focuses on improving obstetric anesthesia practice, obstetric practice and neonatal care in China (a country that makes up 20% of the world’s population). Our participants come from major medical institutions across the US, including Northwestern, Harvard, Johns Hopkins and Stanford. We use data from several large impact studies, including a total of 55,000 deliveries to demonstrate an improvement in maternal and fetal outcomes, including a reduction in the cesarean delivery rate. With the implementation of our ideas and practices,r roughly 15,000 unnecessary caesarean deliveries can be prevented and episiotomies. We are also making some progress in reducing the number of unnecessary episiotomies. Anecdotal reports suggest that we have even saved the lives of at least ten women and their babies through the dissemination of our crash cesarean delivery protocol. We are bringing a positive change to Chinese culture where laboring mothers can fully appreciate the miracle of childbirth without experiencing the unnecessary pain that comes with it. By 2016, a total of 51 Chinese hospitals were visited by close to 500 volunteer health care professionals and translators from all over the world.
Resident Ben Johnson with health care providers at the Taihang Hospital, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China
Read the article featured in the June 2016 Anesthesia & Analgesia article“Pain Labor & Delivery: A Global Health Initiative’s Impact on Clinical Outcomes in China.”
Previous China Trips
A $1750 travel stipend is awarded to three residents and one OB fellow who apply for the China trip. The one-week of clinical experience counts towards their Obstetric Anesthesia rotation, so residents do not have to use CME or VAC time.
- 2017: Taiyuan, Gansu and Shanxi: D. Hale McMichael, MD, Ben Johnson, MD, Ajay Patel, MD, and Eric Morell, MD
- 2016: Jiaxing, Tianjin and Jiansu: Chinwe Dryer, MD, Brad Bavaro, MD, Michael Lee, MD, Kristine Paik, MD, and Stephen Kolb, MD
- 2015: Jiujiang, Anhui and Wuhan: Nicholas Burjek, MD, Elizabeth Lange, MD, Nisha Pinto, MD, and Erin Toaz, MD
- 2014: Liaocheng and Zhengzhou: Thomas Klumpner, MD, Ryan Vealey, MD, Jeremy Walker, MD, and Jennifer Kim, MD
- 2013: Chengdu and Chongqing: Campbell Williams, MD, Anne Lavoie, MD, and Eric Kamenetsky, MD
- 2012: Guangdong: Jessica Buren, MD, Jeffrey Chen, MD, and Hanna Schittek, MD
- 2011: Nanjing and Ningbo: Ronen Harris, MD, Rachel Kacmar, MD, and Ying Zhu, MD
- 2010: Beijing and Wengzou: Tom Strandness, MD, Julie Zhu, MD, and Kristen Spisak, MD
- 2009: Trip to China was cancelled due to H1N1 flu
- 2008: Hangzou: Hubert Benzon, MD, Linda McCleish, MD, and Robbin Hsiung, MD
- 2006: Hangzou: Amit Darnule, MD
- 2005: Chengdu: Amy Henry, MD
CA-3 resident Sebastian Bienia, MD, completed a two-week rotation in February 2015 atGuwahati Comprehensive Cleft Care Center (GC4) in Guwahati, India along with Lurie Children’s pediatric anesthesiologist Nicholas Wasson, MD, and Justin Long, MD. They provided anesthetic care to the children mainly from the most rural regions of India with cleft lip, cleft palate and other minor craniofacial abnormalities. Interesting aspects were use of only spontaneous ventilation for maintenance (no reliable ventilators nearby), maxillary nerve blocks, limited resources (circuits, IVs, masks, etc.) and medications, a consistently malnourished patient group and unique OR setup of five beds in a large rooms with three to four surgeries going on concurrently. This international experience “Operation Smile” is a coordinated multidisciplinary (Plastic Surgery and Anesthesiology) and multi-institutional (Northwestern University and Operation Smile, GC4), with Operation Smile in its 31st year of existence.
For more information about our residency program, please contact Christopher Zell, MS.
Christopher Zell, MS
Residency Program Manager
Department of Anesthesiology
251 E. Huron St, Suite 5-704
Chicago, Illinois 60611