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Visiting Physicians

The Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery participates in the Observership program designed by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The Observership program is for academicians and educational trainees who are interested in observing surgical procedures in the department. This is a one-way relationship in that we provide service to the trainees; they do not provide service to us. This is a hands-in-pocket training experience. Observation only.

Learn more about our observership curriculum (pdf)

Observership program requirements in the Department of Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery:

  • Must demonstrate proficiency in English
  • The maximum appointment for an Observer is three months
  • If approved, there is a fee in the amount of $200 per day up to $1,000 per month
  • White lab coat required (Department will provide scrubs for the operating room)

When your application is approved:

  • E-mail Dara Keener with a current curriculum vitae and include the length and dates you are requesting to observe.
  • An account will be set up for you through the Discover web based application system. You will receive an e-mail from Discover where you will complete the application and submit the required documents through Discover.
  • Once the application and documents are submitted, the Department of Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery will recommend you for an educational appointment.
  • Your application and supporting documents will be sent to the Office of Trainee and Alumni Affairs (TAA) for approval. If approved as an Observer, you will receive an appointment letter via e-mail from TAA.
  • The Visa and Immigration Services Administration Office (V.I.S.A.) can help you secure a Visa, if applicable. Non-US citizens, including permanent residents, are required to check in with V.I.S.A. before the first day of the appointment. V.I.S.A is located at Pickens Academic Tower, 1400 Pressler Street, Suite 6.5000, Houston, TX. Phone: 713-792-1112; e-mail: visa@mdanderson.org. Non-US citizens should bring all original immigration documents.
  • All observers (regardless of citizenship) must check in with Trainee & Alumni Affairs (TAA) after they clear VISA. TAA is located in the Pickens Academic Tower, 1400 Pressler Street, Suite 7.5000, Houston, TX. Phone: 713-792-2696, e-mail: jmills@mdanderson.org. Please have your Visa and Immigration Services Administration Office clearance documents and passport for verification when you check in. Non-US citizens must present the clearance forms they received from the V.I.S.A.
  • After you check in with the Office of International Affairs and Trainee and Alumni Affairs, report to the Program Coordinator's office, Pickens Academic Tower, 1400 Pressler Street, 19th Floor, Rm. FCT19.6000.
  • Observers will need to bring the required fee in cash, money order or a cashier’s check payable to MD Anderson Cancer Center to Dara Keener, Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery, Pickens Academic Tower, 1400 Pressler Street, 19th Floor, Rm. FCT19.6000.
  • The Administrative Chief Thoracic Surgery Fellow and the Program Coordinator will design a program for the observer during his/her appointment. 

If you have any questions, please contact program coordinator Dara Keener or 713-792-7664.

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