Today's News

Friday, February 25, 2005

ICOE's Global Education Exchange helps improve orthopaedic care

By Stuart L. Weinstein, MD
Chair, ICOE

Stuart L. Weinstein, MD
  Whether you are a seasoned orthopaedic surgeon looking for volunteer opportunities, a surgeon in a private practice or an academic institution willing to teach a young surgeon some skills, or a postgraduate looking to further your education, the International Center for Orthopaedic Education (ICOE) is for you.

For more than a decade, the ICOE-a free, Web-based service (www.icoe.aoassn.org)-has helped postgraduate surgeons find a place to further their educations. The database lists clinical, research, service, teaching and observership opportunities around the world. Experiences can be short-term or long-term, and can take place at hospitals, clinics or universities.

By coordinating educational, teaching and service experiences between countries around the world, the ICOE links people and opportunities. Although many groups, such as Orthopaedics Overseas, have their own Web sites where they post their available volunteer programs, posting those same opportunities on the ICOE Web site gives them access to many more thousands of potential, qualified applicants each year.

The ICOE was established by the American Orthopaedic Association (founding sponsor), Orthopaedic Hospital (founding sponsor), Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation.

Currently in a time of transition, the ICOE needs the help of the worldwide orthopaedic community. While it's not necessarily as easy as it once was to host a postgraduate orthopaedic surgeon in your facility, it is important that the global education continues in order to improve care around the world.

A learning opportunity can be as short as one week or as long as one year. Many opportunities are research-based, or observorships, where a young surgeon can learn by shadowing a more senior surgeon. Some programs offer housing and compensation, however, many do not.

If you have or know of an opportunity, consider listing it on the ICOE Web site. History tells us that the experiences are most rewarding for all involved.

Stop by the ICOE booth on the Concourse B Level this week and receive a demonstration of the new, easier-to-use Web site and learn more about how you can post or search for an opportunity. Or visit us online: www.icoe.aoassn.org

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