Scholars Impact: Visiting Scholars Alumni Reflect on their Experience and Research

The supportive environment of the ABMS Visiting Scholars Program™ is enriching and equipping the next generation of health care specialists on both the professional and personal fronts. Here are a few reflections from ABMS Visiting Scholars on the impact of their experiences with the program and the continued value and resonance it is having in their lives.

Visiting Scholars Program Inspired and Opened Doors for Physician on the COVID-19 Frontlines

Brian T. Garibaldi, MD, MEHP | American Board of Internal Medicine
Specialty: Internal Medicine
Subspecialties: Critical Care Medicine
Pulmonary Disease

When we checked in with Visiting Scholar alumnus Brian Garibaldi, MD, MHEP in January of 2021, we found him still very much on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Over the past two years, it’s been all COVID-19, all of the time, unfortunately,” said Dr. Garibaldi.

In late December 2019, the world health community first learned of a cluster of pneumonia cases in China. Dr. Garibaldi’s institution, Johns Hopkins Health System, began its response, including activating its incident command teams in early January 2020 and the Biocontainment Unit (BCU) for its first patient with COVID-19 on February 29.

Read more of Dr. Garibaldi’s story

Visiting Scholars Program Inspired Pediatrician to Pursue a Career in Medical Education

Victoria Wurster Ovalle, MD | American Board of Pediatrics
Specialty: Pediatrics
Subspecialty: Pediatric Emergency Medicine

According to pediatrician Victoria Wurster Ovalle, MD, the ABMS Visiting Scholars Program has had far-reaching, positive effects on her career.

“By supporting my research and providing me with the scaffolding and mentorship to pursue a career in medical education, the ABMS Visiting Scholars Program exceeded my expectations,” said Dr. Wurster Ovalle. “Thanks to the program, I have connected with colleagues and professionals across many specialties that are experts in assessment, competency-based education, quality improvement, and patient safety.”

Read more of Dr. Wurster Ovalle’s story

Visiting Scholars Program Opened Her Eyes to the Possibilities in Improving Medical Education

Brenessa M. Lindeman, MD, MEHP | American Board of Surgery
Specialty: Surgery

When Brenessa M. Lindeman, MD, MEHP wants to discuss tracking patient outcomes and resident engagement, she sends a group text to some of the members of her 2018-2019 ABMS Visiting Scholars Program cohort.

“Several of us regularly keep in touch because we made personal connections and we are all working on improving the education and experiences of medical students and residents in the U.S.,” said Dr. Lindeman. “These professionals are some of the most creative and thoughtful people on this topic, so their perspectives are incredibly valuable to me and my work.”

Read more of Dr. Lindeman’s story

Pediatrician Credits Visiting Scholars Program for Connections and Support that Helped Him Launch Program of Research

Daniel J. Schumacher, MD, PhD, MEd | American Board of Pediatrics
Specialty: Pediatrics
Subspecialty: Pediatric Emergency Medicine

Breaking new ground is nothing new to board certified pediatrician and researcher Daniel J. Schumacher, MD, PhD, MEd.

Among his many “firsts,” Dr. Schumacher was his hospital’s first recipient of the prestigious and competitive Macy Faculty Scholar Award from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation. He is also one of a select number of Americans who are members of the International Competency-based Medical Education Collaborators. It seems fitting that Dr. Schumacher was part of the inaugural class of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) Visiting Scholars Program in 2014–2015.

Read more of Dr. Schumacher’s story

Researcher and Surgeon Leverages Visiting Scholar Experience to Make an Impact in Health Equity

Regan W. Bergmark, MD | American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery
Specialty: Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery

When the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) Visiting Scholars named Regan Bergmark, MD to its 2017–2018 class, it could not have predicted just how wise and far-reaching its investment would be.

“Thanks to the financial support received from the ABMS Visiting Scholar Program, I was able to purchase de-identified health care utilization data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,” said Regan Bergmark, MD. “These state-level data sets were valuable for my original Visiting Scholars research project, but they have been absolutely priceless for follow-up projects that delve deeper into health care utilization and equity issues.”

Read more of Dr. Bergmark’s story

Researcher and Surgeon Has the “Best of All Worlds”

Caitlin W. Hicks, MD, MS | American Board of Surgery
Specialties: Surgery
Vascular Surgery

When she is not traveling the world to exotic locations like the Horn of South America, Caitlin W. Hicks, MD, MS is a world-class vascular surgeon. She also was a member of the 2018-2019 class of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) Visiting Scholars Program.

“Being a Visiting Scholar was an incredible opportunity to develop my research skills, including creating metrics for low-value care and generating physician expert panels,” said Dr. Hicks. “My Scholar research is the foundation for much of the work I do today.”

Read more of Dr. Hicks’ story