Since graduating from a medical academy in Ukraine with a pediatric surgery residency, I have spent thousands of hours in the OR working overtime.
In the U.S., I passed all the required exams to become ECFMG certified, worked as a surgical assistant where I assisted with all types of surgeries. I also now work as a GI assistant in the digestive health department in the Chicago Advocate Medical system, where I assist with regular basic and interventional procedures. I’ve also participated in a research study with colo-rectal surgeons which will be part of an international study guide.
With all this, I still have not matched to a residency position at a teaching hospital. I want to be a practicing doctor in the United States, a country that has a tremendous shortage of doctors in multiple communities. I – and many like me – am ready and willing to help. We must put our own citizen doctors to work first, and then supplement any unfilled residency spots with J-1 and H-1B visa holders – not the opposite which is the current situation.