By Kristin Dwyer MD & Trish Henwood MD
Teacher extraordinaire Dr. Alex Brevil is a favorite among his residents the world over. He is currently a faculty member in the ultrasound division at Kings County/Downstate Hospitals, and internationally he focuses on ultrasound training efforts in Haiti. Alex graduated from the emergency ultrasound fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He has been working alongside many visiting professors and EUS trained physicians in trying to formalize ultrasound education in Mirebalais, Haiti as part of the Masters in Education he completed along with his ultrasound fellowship. The University Hospital in Mirebalais is the only teaching hospital in Haiti with an emergency medicine residency program and they just proudly graduated the first class of Haitian trained emergency medicine physicians last year!
Ultrasound is critical in the ED in Mirebalais and the EM trainees use it quite often. They get a mixed curriculum including plenty of hands-on training as well as various lectures given by visiting professors. The residency leadership approached Dr. Brevil to help institute a credentialing process to help provide quality assurance, as well as provide a certificate of competency to show potential future employers. The task of certifying the residents was given to Alex during his ultrasound fellowship and he established a certification process including OSCEs (modified from the PURE team’s use in Rwanda) to test the residents’ hands on ultrasound skills. He also created a fantastic 80 question image-based final exam to test recognition and treatment of various abnormal findings for the first graduating class. These educational efforts combined with the frequent need for and use of ultrasound as a diagnostic tool means these EM residents are now quite adept with it, and their patients are getting better care as a result. Alex makes several trips a year to Haiti to administer these skills tests in addition to clinical work, and he gets to visit some family in Haiti to boot! Feel free to contact him at email@example.com if you are interested in getting involved with these ultrasound efforts in Haiti.