Introducing the ASA Resident International Anesthesia Scholarship in Ethiopia!

By Elizabeth T. Drum, MD, FAAP, FCPP
Temple University School of Medicine
and Faye Evans, MD
Boston Children’s Hospital

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Dr. Mary Bernard (left) and Dr. Elizabeth Drum at CURE Hospital in Ethiopia

Are you a resident who wants to have an International experience?  Do you have a resident in your program who is interested in an International rotation?  Are you wondering just how to make this a reality? Wonder no more!

The American Society of Anesthesiologists Global Humanitarian Outreach (GHO) committee is pleased to announce the start of a scholarship program for US Anesthesiology residents to spend a month in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia at CURE Hospital. Funding for this program was approved at the October 2014 ASA meeting in New Orleans, and the program is set to start in August 2015.

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Dr. Swapnil Khoche (resident from Temple) observes a spinal at CURE

Modeled on the highly acclaimed and successful Society for Education in Anesthesia (SEA) Health Volunteers Oversees (HVO) Traveling Fellowship, this program will pay the expenses for eight residents during the year to spend one month working at CURE Ethiopia under the direction of Mary Bernard, MD, who is a US Board Certified Anesthesiologist.

Residents will have the opportunity to experience the challenges of delivering safe anesthesia in a low resource underserved area in a developing country as well as participate in the training and education of local anesthesia providers.  With appropriate planning, the resident will be eligible to receive ABA credit.  All expenses, including travel, lodging, meals, visa, vaccinations and medical insurance, will be covered by the scholarship.  Faculty members are invited to accompany the resident, although the home institution will be responsible for the costs.

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Dr. Budhrani (Temple resident), Dr. Mahder (Ethiopian resident), Dr. Tyson (Temple resident), and Dr. Drum at CURE

Brief Background on Ethiopia and Rotation Details
Ethiopia is a country of approximately 96 million people in sub-Saharan Africa (more than 3000 miles from the current Ebola outbreak).  Currently there are fewer than a dozen Ethiopian physician anesthesiologists in practice in Ethiopia.

US vs Ethiopia

Source:  CIA Factbook 2014

The one-month long elective rotation will be based at CURE Ethiopia, which is primarily a pediatric orthopedic teaching hospital in Addis Ababa run by the US Non Governmental Organization (NGO) CURE International.  CURE Ethiopia’s medical director is Mary Bernard, MD who is a US citizen, and an ABA certified anesthesiologist who is currently practicing at Cure Ethiopia. 

The hospital focuses primarily on pediatric orthopedics and treats disabilities such as clubfoot and other limb deformities. Visiting medical teams also provide plastic reconstructive surgery for cleft lip and facial deformities, along with ENT surgeons who help to improve hearing and other head and neck diseases.

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Dr. Mahder (Ethiopian resident, left) and Dr. Tyson (Temple resident) with patient at CURE

The one-month rotation will provide the resident the opportunity to work with Dr. Bernard as well as other anesthesia volunteers and CURE’s Orthopedic surgeons.  In addition, the residents will have the unique opportunity to work with Ethiopian non-physician anesthesia providers and trainees who rotate at CURE Hospital. 

Responsibilities will include direct clinical care as well as preparing and giving several lectures to the master’s students.  Residents will also have opportunities to meet, work, and interact with Ethiopian anesthesia residents from Black Lion Hospital.  They will also have the opportunity to visit other local hospitals and to attend educational programs.

Application details:

  • Positions open to CA 2 or 3 residents who will have had a pediatric rotation prior to the rotation in Ethiopia.

  • First available month for rotation is August 2015, start dates flexible based on needs of the home institution.

  • Applications are due by January 30, 2015.

For more information or to apply, send a letter of motivation, letter of support from Program Director and CV to:

Elizabeth T. Drum, MD, FAAP, FCPP
Clinical Professor of Anesthesiology and Pediatrics (Adjunct)
Temple University School of Medicine
US Program Director for Scholarship Program


Berend Mets, MB, ChB, PhD, FRCA, FFA (SA)
Eric A. Walker Professor and Chair
Department of Anesthesiology
Penn State College of Medicine

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