Resident Opportunities and Recognition

Program For Away Rotation Sites

The Saint Louis University School of Medicine Graduate Medical Education Office provides support for a limited number of away electives for resident training. These rotations are intended to enrich the educational experience of a resident and the residency training program, expand SLU's visibility locally and internationally, and create unique opportunities for residents to provide care to the underserved.
Applications are reviewed twice each year and must be received by May 1 or Nov. 1.   

For a full description of the Program for Away Rotation program,  download the guidelines.

Program 2017-18 Rotation Site
Emergency Medicine Thailand
Otolaryngology Nigeria
Radiology Kenya

Past rotation sites have included South Africa, Malawi, India, China, Belize and others. Past participating residencies include Family Medicine, Orthopaedic Surgery, Internal  Medicine, Psychiatry, Otolaryngology, Maternal Fetal Medicine, Neurology and others.

The financial structure of Medicare Graduate Medical Education training requires residents to work physically within the hospital system that provides the financial support for the educational experience. Resident rotations away for special educational activities, volunteering for underserved populations and international experiences are not supported through traditional GME cost report funding. It is difficult to arrange away rotations, even within the same city, without dedicated financial support.

Many Saint Louis University faculty volunteer clinically outside of the United States and would welcome resident participation but lack a financial mechanism for such rotations. Prospective residents often ask about international or away electives during the interview process and indicate that the Saint Louis University mission of service is a reason for selecting our school and residencies. Many desire the opportunity to provide additional care to the underserved, generally outside of the United States, as a part of the training program. Some residents also desire specialized educational opportunities that are not available at our School or affiliated training hospitals. These rotations away require external stipend support not available through the current hospital or GME training budgets.

Program Structure
Each academic year, selected residents will be allowed to engage in training outside of the Saint Louis University affiliated sites for a maximum of four weeks each. This is a competitive process which requires an application, approval and supporting documentation. A committee will review the application and determine if funding and support will be provided by the GME office for this experience. Applications must be received at least two months in advance of the expected training period.
Funding Support

Up to 28 days (approximately $5,000) per resident will be covered through the GME office for stipend, benefits and malpractice coverage (if U.S.-based rotation) during the away rotation. An additional travel allowance of up to $1,000 will be provided to offset a portion of the cost of airfare/transit to an international location and up to $500 to a U.S.-based location. Trainees remaining in St. Louis will not receive a travel allowance.

When partial existing funds are available for a rotation or travel, partial support may be provided by GME to offset unfunded expenses. The resident or program will be responsible for lodging, meals, required vaccinations or prophylactic medications, incidental costs, and fees associated with processing, licensing or credentialing at the away site, purchasing of international health insurance (mandatory) or additive malpractice coverage (optional).

The resident's training program will be responsible for any programmatic costs associated with the trainee's absence. International health insurance is available for a minimal cost through Saint Louis University via the SLU Marketplace website.

This program will neither replace established funding mechanisms for resident away rotations, nor fund experiences that are a required component of the residency training program. This program is intended to provide support for unique opportunities, resident-initiated experiences, or initial development of international training partnerships for resident education. This program is not intended to fund established or annual "senior year" away rotations for a department/program. External or departmental support is expected for recurring away experiences. Denial of funding through this GME-supported program does not imply denial of approval by the GME office for the away experience; other funding mechanisms should be pursued.

Program Requirements

Each training program may submit up to two applications for consideration during an academic year. Applications and supporting documentation must be completed before being considered by the review committee. Applications must clearly demonstrate the educational benefit to the trainee and program and the support of the program director and department. Upon return from the rotation, the trainee will be required to provide an educational presentation of the experience, complete a post-rotation report for the GME office and serve as a resource for other trainees who may be interested in away rotation experiences.

A local faculty adviser and an off-site supervisor must be identified for each away experience. The adviser will be responsible for assisting the resident with the application process, obtaining necessary supporting documentation, monitoring the resident's participation in the away rotation and ensuring an evaluation of the resident takes place. The off-site supervisor must complete an end-of-rotation evaluation and agree to the term established for the away rotation. The resident, faculty adviser and program director are responsible for all planning, paperwork and travel arrangements.

A rotation description including goals and objectives, clinical responsibilities, and the supervision and evaluation process must be created by the program director, and an evaluation of the trainee must be performed at the end of the experience by the supervising clinician. When required, the program director must submit a program letter of agreement between Saint Louis University and the away site which outlines the resident responsibilities, educational activities, and supervision structure of the away rotation. The program director must complete any paperwork required by the away rotation site at least one month in advance of the start of the rotation.

The away rotation must not place undue clinical or service stress on other trainees or compromise patient care. Participating residents must not be required to extend residency training by participating in the away rotation. The away rotation must provide a certifiable educational experience as outlined in the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Resident Review Committee Program Requirements for the trainee's specialty.

Selection Process

Applications will be reviewed for merit and priority by the Program for Away Rotation Review Committee comprised of resident, faculty and GME members. Applications will be reviewed for approval/funding twice each year (May 1 and Nov. 1). A resident must be in good standing with the training program and the school and is eligible to participate in a GME supported away rotation only once while in training at Saint Louis University. Priority will be given to those trainees who:

  • Are a PGY-2 or higher
  • Utilize the full four-week rotation period
  • Engage in clinical activities accompany a Saint Louis University faculty on the rotation
  • Provide care to an underserved population
  • Work internationally
  • Participate in a well-established governmental educational or philanthropic program/organization
  • Engage in an educational activity that is not available at Saint Louis University affiliated training sites

The away rotation cannot take place in a restricted location, site of military conflict or area which would place the trainee in physical danger. 

Caring Physician Award 

Physician recipients and nominees live out the ideals of our mission in their practice. All attending physicians, fellows and residents who practice at SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital and who have not received the award in the last seven years are eligible for nomination. 

2017 Caring Physician Award Nominees 

  • Jonathan Chica, M.D. 
  • Mudasir Kamal, M.D. 
  • Maheen Khan, M.D. 
  • Andrew Kichura, M.D. 
  • Jonathan Lebovitz, M.D. 
  • Aaron Miller, M.D. 
  • Zachary Oman, M.D. 
  • Amith Reddy, M.D. 
  • Douglas Snyder, M.D. 

2017 Caring Physician Award Winners

  • Jonathan Chica, M.D. - Department of Surgery
  • Andrew Kichura, M.D. - Divison of Cardiology 
2016 Caring Physician Award Nominees
  • Jonathan Chica, M.D. 
  • Michael Cooper, M.D. 
  • Najib El Tecle, M.D. 
  • Christine Henderson, M.D. 
  • Sam Kuchinka, M.D. 
  • Kate Shoemaker, M.D. 
  • Irum Yaqub, M.D. 
2016 Caring Physician Award Winners
  • Matthew Pierson, M.D. 
  • Annie Mooser, M.D. 
  • Mustafa D. Nazzal, M.D. 
  • John J. Dombrowski, M.D., Ph.D. 
  • Joseph H. Walline, M.D. 

Alpha Omega Alpha 

Resident-Fellow Induction Class of 2017 

  • Christopher Brownsworth 
  • Sean Massa 
  • Cassie Shaw 
  • Kanika Turner 
  • Melissa Wehrmann