Global Health

Since the early days of the residency, the UCLA-Ronald Reagan/Olive View Emergency Medicine Residency Program has responded to the need for the development of high-quality Emergency Medicine capabilities abroad. Some examples of our work include:

Dr. Breena Taira, Research Director and Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at Olive View-UCLA, is the current ACEP Ambassador to Nicaragua. She also serves as the US Executive Director for Project SEMILLA, a non-profit international partnership with the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Nicaragua (UNAN) School of Medicine that works on improving emergency healthcare capacity in Latin America through education, system organization, and improved access to technologies.

Recently, former Chief Resident and Ultrasound Fellow, Dr. Caleb Canders returned from Nicaragua with several Olive View-UCLA faculty as a part of this effort. Dr. Taira also chairs the International and Domestic Health Equity and Leadership (IDHEAL) Section of the UCLA Department of Emergency Medicine.

In 1984, Dr. Robert Simon, then a UCLA Emergency Medicine faculty member, along with the support of fellow volunteer physicians and nurses, started the International Medical Corps. This has since become a large global non-governmental organization supporting health relief efforts in over 30 countries.

Dr. Tom Lee, a long-time faculty member at Ronald Reagan UCLA and Antelope Valley Hospital, founded Community Partners International, which has been working in Myanmar for over seventeen years, serving the health and development needs of those in low resource settings

Dr. Alan Chiem, our Ultrasound Director and Professor of Emergency Medicine, maintains a partnership to promote ultrasound education in Chile.

Dr. Joanne Feldman, Clinical Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at UCLA, regularly travels to Antarctica as a physician for the research base also serves as a medical director on ecotourism expeditions across the globe.

UCLA maintains a strong relationship with the Second Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China where Dr. David Schriger, Emergency Medicine Professor in Residence, and Dr. Scott Votey, Professor of Emergency Medicine, recently returned from.

Dr. Matt Waxman, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at Olive View-UCLA, recently returned from fighting the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone.

Many of our graduates continue to do international work and become leaders in this field. This, in part, stems from flexible elective time allowing residents interested in global health to work in locations around the world. Recently, our residents have done electives in Haiti, South Africa, Nepal, China and Uganda. In addition, the UCLA Center for International Medicine has an established resident exchange program with Bali’s International Medical Centre Hospital for a funded Emergency Medicine experience. All faculty members welcome interested residents, and UCLA remains one of the few programs in the country that will pay your resident salary for an international emergency medicine experience!