Continuing Medical Education Program (CME) trainers gathered at FAR’s Yerevan office on February 3 for their bi-annual meeting. Joined by the FAR Fellowship Alumni Association (FARFAA) and FAR staff, all reflected on the milestones of a successful year.
CME Program Coordinator Doctor Hambartsum Simonyan opened with a review of CME’s 2010 achievements. “Between 2005 and 2011, CME has trained 260 physicians from all regions of Armenia, in more than 25 different medical specializations. 2010 was unique in that we managed to tackle nearly every program objective,” he said.
Forty-eight physicians throughout Armenia and Nagorno-Karabagh participated in trainings at leading hospitals of Yerevan. A huge amount of medical supplies were distributed to more than 20 hospitals in Yerevan and surrounding regions. Also, thanks to FAR scholarships, seven physicians were able to attend the Salzburg International Medical Seminar. One oncology resident, a recipient of FAR’s “Resident Student Scholarship Program” graduated Yerevan State Medical University (YSMU) and is now working in Dilijan’s regional hospital, as stipulated by program requirements. Three other YSMU graduates also began the scholarship program in 2010.
In cooperation with YSMU, CME was able to organize several successful medical seminars, including four on neurology, one on cardiology and a one-day workshop on gynecology and obstetrics. More than 150 physicians attended the seminars held in Vanadzor, Dilijan and Martuni.
The Arabkir Medical Center also collaborated with CME to hold a seminar on pediatric anesthesiology led by renowned Swiss Medical Professor Markus Weis. Also, CME and YSMU’s Clinical Division of Tuberculosis held a conference on tuberculosis. Finally, in 2010 the American Armenian Health Professionals Organization approved CME's request to recruit doctors from Nagorno-Karabagh and Javakhk. Active recruitment will be underway later this year.
More workshops and seminars are planned for 2011 and there will be some new training opportunities in the U.S. because of FAR’s extensive network with the medical community.
During the meeting, trainers stressed the importance of the CME program. In the words of one participant: “Along with offering an opportunity for free training to physicians, real hands-on experience in the field, and a great network, CME also re-inspires in us devotion to our work.”