Thursday 19 April 2012

Other Opportunities for IMGs

Surfing the interweb recently I came across a useful website for international medical graduates. It belongs to an organization called 'Welcome back INITIATIVE' and is an international health worker assistance center. Seems like this is a useful lead for those seeking assistance with USCE or introduction to medical care in US. They have had decent success in  bringing physicians and medical related professionals in to the US health care fold. according to their statistic, they have placed 35% MD, 9% dentists and 42% nurses. Majority of their cases are from South America (Mexico in particular) followed by Philippines and China. This organization is another resource for IMGs looking to get a residency. If you look at their outcomes here you will see that 108 physicians were accepted into residency programs via this initiative. According to the details on the website, they provide orientation, counseling, and support to foreign-trained health workers. More importantly for the cash-strapped residency applicants, this is a free service as WBI is a non-profit organization. There are several offices spread through out the US including San Francisco, San Diego, Boston, Rhode Island, Puget Sound WA, Suburban Maryland, New York, San Antonio, TX, Colorado and Northwest WA.

Since they are connected with community colleges, you may even explore options for MPH or other masters degrees to enhance you CV. There are some useful courses that the WBI provides - The Introduction to the US Health System, the USMLE prep course, and the English for Health Professionals especially at the San Diego and San Francisco centers.

As seen on page 19 of this presentation,  they are also involved in observerships in health care institutions especially at the Rhode Island, Puget sound and Maryland locations. San Francisco and Puget sound locations also have MD panel discussions on residency matching. More information at welcome back


  1. Hi

    I have been waiting for confirmation and detail information from AAPI for observership but so for they have not replied.

    Do you have any e book for Old IMGs, I have been studying continuously starting from Diploma in Family Medicine, Post Graduation certificate in Accident and Emergency Medicine, ALS, ATLS, FCCS, ADAMS, ITLS, MRCGP UK, MRCP UK, Diploma in Occupational Medicine, I have involved in forming guidelines for Antibiotics, Audit on URTI, Use of Quinolones, Misuse of X-ray for back Pain, Chest pain algorithm at primary care.

    But I feel quite depressed when I read lot of sad story of many Old IMGs on USMLE FORUMS, I have scored 236 in step 1 and hoping to do better in CK and CS but feeling depressed after reading lot of stories on Forums. I have resigned from present job which ACGME following hospital and also accredited by JCI to concentrate more on USMLE and to do some USCE as I did not got any leave.

    I am also thinking of joining IMG Prep as I read in some Forum that they are not very great but in short they are helpful for Old IMG for preparing Proper application, writing personal statement and applyingright program for Old IMG

    Could you advice me.

    Thank you once again


    1. Hello Dr. Gireesh, The unfortunate situation in this matter is that thought your accomplishments are superior there are just too many applicants who are vying for the same limited opportunities. When it comes to this kind of situtation, there are only 3 ways out of it - keep trying every time, a lot and it will be a matter of time when you get a break and get into some of the programs you have listed above. The other is to do something that elevates your resume above the plane of the applicant pool making you favored for the opportunities listed. The third and final option is to realize that there are something that are meant to be and there are somethings are never going to happen how hard you try. Year of graduation is something you cannot change in this lifetime. I recommend that you focus on getting 250+ on the remainder of the exams. This may offset some of your handicaps. I do not have any personal input about IMGprep so cannot comment on that. At this point, dont read too much into forum chatter and focus on acing the USMLE steps and getting ECFMG certified. Depending on the outcome of your exams, you can decide your plan of action.


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