Medical Society of Sedgwick County members attended medical schools in more than 40 countries, making Wichita and Kansas a rich, well-rounded community of physicians.
On Oct 1, the MSSC is holding a special event to celebrate its International Medical Graduates (IMGs). All physicians – not just MSSC members – are invited to attend. The event will feature specially curated international food and a panel of IMG physicians discussing their medical school and residency experiences.
“I expect a very interesting evening that will give everyone a chance to learn more about each other,” MSSC President Michael Lievens, MD, said.
According to a 2015 study, international medical graduates – who must pass a U.S. medical licensing examination, be certifi ed by an educational commission and go through a U.S. medical residency program in order to practice medicine here – make up about a quarter of the physicians in the United States.
These physicians are particularly needed in rural or other underserved areas and in certain specialties. They make up more than 40 percent of the primary care work force in the United States, and more half of those caring for older Americans.
The MSSC has 182 members who graduated from medical schools in 39 diff erent foreign countries. Retired MSSC members bring the country total to 49.
The most-represented countries among practicing MSSC physicians are Lebanon and India, with 43 and 39 members respectively. Syria is next with 14, followed by Pakistan, China, Philippines, Jordan, Kenya and Mexico, which have five to eight members each.
The celebration’s featured speakers are Dr. Samuel Akidiva, Moi University, Eldoret, Kenya; Dr. Usha Challa, Rangaraya Medical College, Kakinada, India; Dr. Estephan Zayat, American University of Beirut Medical School, Beirut, Lebanon; Dr. Claudia Wendell, Universidad Industrial de Santander, Bucaramanga, Columbia.
Lievens underscored the value of MSSC general membership meetings and the opportunity to interact with fellow physicians.
“Each time I leave a meeting, I fi nd myself wondering why I didn’t attended more often in the past, before I became more involved,” he said. “It is always enjoyable.”
Food will be provided by Café Maurice (Mediterranean) and Kababs (Indian and Pakistan). Juarez Bakery is supplying dessert.