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International Program

The Anesthesiology International Program (AIP) offers the opportunity for anesthesiologists from other countries to come to the USA for a short period of time to observe and learn medical and anesthesia care.

Doctor listening to the heart beat of a child

Anesthesiology International Program

Working in conjunction with the KU Medical Center Office of International Programs, the KU AIP is meant to be a bidirectional international sharing and exchange of global health education, research and culture.

Global Health Education Partnerships

The University of Kansas Medical Center, with the Office of International Programs, has established global health education partnerships with hospitals in Ghana and Peru. The goal of these partnerships is to establish and cultivate an exchange of residents, students and staff to promote the interchange of research, education and culture.

The cooperative agreement between KU Medical Center and our international partners is a non-financial, five-year, renewable agreement inclusive of all departments and schools of the university. Our partners include:

image of hospital sign komfo anokye teaching hospital
  • Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi, Ghana
  • Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Neoplasticas (INEN)(National Institute of Neoplastic Diseases) in Lima, Peru
  • Instituto Nacional de Salud del Niño San Borja (INSNSB)(National Institute of Child Health) in Lima, Peru

In 2017 Dr. Grace Xu was invited to visit the Department of Anesthesiology of Hunan Children's Hospital in China to share her experience in pediatric anesthesia and provide a seminar in airway management.

Furnished with 1,800 beds and staffed with 1,800 employees, the hospital has established 36 clinical departments and 9 medical labs. So far, the hospital has set up Hunan Provincial Pediatric Emergency Center, Hunan Provincial Treatment and Rehabilitation Center of Pediatric Cerebral Palsy, Hunan Provincial Center of Adolescent Medicine, Hunan Provincial Prevention and Control Center of Pediatric Optometry, Amblyopia and Strabismus.

In 2005 the hospital successfully treated two of China's youngest patients with human avian influenza. In 2006, China's first extremely low birth weight infant of 500 g (a little over a pound) was discharged from the hospital. The hospital successfully performed surgery of conjoined twins respectively in 2009 and in 2012.

Hunan Hospital

Group photo outside KU hospital

International Exchanges

Every year, KU Medical Center's Department of Anesthesiology and Office of International Programs sponsors an exchange program for medical residents, students, and staff with partner institutions in Ghana and Peru. During these exchanges, participants take part in activities aimed towards advancing their medical training by taking part in cross-cultural experiences and building relationships at the host institution. Opportunities are also available to participate in research projects or training workshops.

Since the program’s establishment in 2016, KU participants travelling to Ghana and Peru have included anesthesia residents, medical students, nurse anesthesia students and staff members from both anesthesiology and nurse anesthesia. Additionally, residents from both KATH in Ghana and INEN in Peru have travelled to KU Medical Center as participants in this exchange.

The Kovac International Education Support Fund was established to provide support for qualified individuals participating in international cross-cultural education exchanges. The areas supported include anesthesiology residents, KU Medical Center students and residents or doctors from non-English speaking countries. Preference is given to Ghana, Peru and other Spanish speaking countries.

The Kovac International Observership Award is awarded annually to two individuals per year, one each from our partnering institutions in Ghana and Peru. It supports housing and travel to KU Medical Center, in which individuals will observe medical care provided within our hospital system.

Participants will also gain exposure to multiple anesthesia subspecialties depending on the awardee’s interests. Participants are encouraged to participate in lectures, challenging case discussions and research project development. At the end of the observership period, participants are expected to give a short presentation on life, education and healthcare in their home country. The observership does not involve any direct patient care.

Sociedad Peruana de Anestesia, Analgesia y Reanimacion (SPAAR)(Peruvian Society of Anesthesia, Analgesia, and Reanimation) also sponsors two additional residents to participate in an observership program at KU Medical Center, who are selected through a national resident competition.

Dr. Jennifer Hansen, KU medical student Canaan Coker, and KU nurse anesthetist student Kayla McClanahan, accompanied Dr. Anthony Kovac to Lima, Peru in February 2019 to participate in the "Kovac International Observership" program. While there, Dr. Hansen gave two Grand Rounds at the country's main children's hospitals: the Instituto Nacional de Salud del Niño San Borja, and the Instituto Nacional de Salud del Niño Breña. Kayla McClanahan gave a presentation to the Anesthesiology department at INSN San Borja as part of her senior project.

In addition to visiting the children's hospitals, the group spent time at the National Cancer Hospital in Lima, the "Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Neoplásicas", and learned about pediatric and adult oncology care in Peru.

Research and Education Projects

Every year, KU Medical Center's Department of Anesthesiology and Office of International Programs sponsors an exchange program for medical residents, students, and staff with partner institutions in Ghana and Peru. During these exchanges, participants take part in activities aimed towards advancing their medical training by taking part in cross-cultural experiences and building relationships at the host institution. Opportunities are also available to participate in research projects or training workshops.

Doctor teaching students with a medical dummy

A major goal of our global health education partnerships is to develop and foster ongoing relationships to build collaborative research and education efforts. A variety of projects have developed from participation in our international exchanges, including:

Past Participants

Past participants in these exchange programs have included the following:

KU Medical Center

  • Rebecca Wiebelhaus, CRNA - nurse anesthesia student (Kumasi, Ghana in 2018)
  • Philip Kwetey, CRNA - nurse anesthesia student (Kumasi, Ghana in 2018)
  • Cole Holmgren, MD - resident, Society for Education in Anesthesia Health Volunteers Overseas Fellowship (Kumasi, Ghana in 2017)
  • Narda Lyons, CRNA - nurse anesthesia student (Lima, Peru in 2017)
  • Mark Brouillette, MD - resident, Society for Education in Anesthesia Health Volunteers Overseas Fellowship (Kumasi, Ghana in 2016)
  • Alex Hermanson, MD - medical student (Kumasi, Ghana in 2016)
  • Sam Martinez, CRNA - nurse anesthesia student (Lima, Peru in 2016)

KATH (Kumasi, Ghana)

  • Anastasia Abene Ohene, MBChB (2018)
  • Oby Ofungwu, MBChB (2017)
  • Alfred Aidoo, MBChB (2016)

INEN/INSNSB (Lima, Peru)

  • Jose Medina, MD (2018)
  • Luis Orbegoso, MD (2017)
  • Delia Cantuarias, MD (2016)
KU School of Medicine

University of Kansas Medical Center
Department of Anesthesiology
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Mailstop 1034
Kansas City, KS 66160
913-588-7415