The IMG’s Guide to Finding U.S. Clinical Experience

United States clinical experience (USCE) plays a key role in the IMG’s road to residency. Clinical experience may help you:

  • ask for and secure letters of recommendation, which are critical for most IMGs
  • network and make a variety of connections
  • learn more about technology and general U.S. culture

Just as important, residency program directors are looking for IMGs who have a grasp of the U.S. health care environment and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s core competencies of residency programs here in the United States.

USMLE COVID-19 Update for International Medical Graduates
The USMLE program has extended eligibility periods for those preparing to take the exam with a scheduling permit. The eligibility period has been extended. Regardless of which country an examinee is testing in, the eligibility window will now extend to December 2020. You will not be responsible for any fees for extending your eligibility. For more information, check out the USMLE website or read more AMA FAQs.

How does an IMG find U.S. clinical experience?

As an IMG, it may sometimes feel like you’re between a rock and a hard place. You know you need U.S. clinical experience, but those positions can be hard to find or get into. At Kaplan, we’re offering a formalized system for obtaining your U.S. clinical experience.  
Through Kaplan’s Step 2 with U.S. Clinical Experience, you’ll be able to complete an in-person Step 2 prep course. Following your course, you will join an attending physician at a U.S. hospital for clinical rotations.
You can choose whether you’d like a 6-month experience that includes 8-weeks of rotations or a 12-month experience that includes 28 weeks of rotations.
What’s included:

  • Step 2 prep with live lectures
  • Real clinical experience at a U.S. hospital located in Miami, FL
  • Personal advising and increased chances to match
  • Rotation opportunities in Internal Medicine, Nephrology, Intensive Care Unit/ Critical Care, Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Endocrinology, Neurology, Gastroenterology, Hematology/Oncology, Surgery, and Psychiatry.
  • Exposure and training on Electronic Medical Record Utilization

What else can you do? Tap into your network.

Leaving no stone unturned means contacting friends and peers (IMG and otherwise) who’ve already done their rotations and asking them what you can do to get yours. You could find yourself being introduced through a connection to a university that will accept you for clinical experience, even if it typically doesn’t do that. Tapping into any and all of your connections can make such things possible.
Once you’ve established yourself at an institution, continue to approach different physicians within the same university network to get even more clinical experience. It takes a bit of boldness and a thick skin, but aren’t your residency dreams worth it?

Need clinical experience in the U.S.? Check out Kaplan’s Step 2 CK course.