Clinical Observership Program


Observership is granted to foreign medical school graduates for the duration of a 1 month. (4 WEEKS)

Rotation Objectives

  • To familiarize yourself with the U.S. medical system.
  • To become proficient in presentation of history and physical examinations on daily rounds.
  • To become proficient in ascertaining patients' acute symptoms and making a therapeutic plan.
  • To learn to write daily progress notes.
  • To learn how to interpret basic lab tests and radiology data such as blood, urine serum, X-rays, etc.

Eligibility Criteria

Foreign Medical Student Graduates: Must be a GRADUATE of a Medical School

  • Must be ECFMG certified
  • Must have up to date immunization records including flu shot during flu season(Oct-March)
  • No exceptions are made in fairness to all applicants


  • A formal application shall be submitted to the Clinical Observership Program Committee during the designated application dates, Aug 1 through Sept 30 of each year.
  • Standardized applications such as an ERAS application is acceptable. In the event that ERAS application is not available, a Common Application Form can be substituted.

The following are required to be submitted to the Committee for consideration of participation in the program:

  • A completed application or ERAS application 
  • A cover letter detailing desired rotation
  • Your C.V.
  • At least one letter of reference from a clinical supervisor or advisor, or an attending physician
  • USMLE score reports
  • Medical school diploma
  • ECFMG certificate
  • TOEFL score report ( if available)
  • Documentation of up-to-date immunization record (please see details below)
  • Proof of health insurance coverage
  • A recent photograph for identification
  • Copy of passport and valid visa

Application Deadline

  • A completed application must be received no later than Oct 1
  • Formal start date is usually the first working day of a calendar month.
  • Timing is at the discretion of the program coordinator and teaching service schedules.

Approval Process

Applications will be formally reviewed for each year.

The Clinical Observership Program Committee will meet and review each application carefully. There are observership positions in each of the following areas:

  • General Medicine (1) slots
  • ICU (1) slot
  • Cardiology (1) slot

Observership selection is based on the following criteria, where no single criteria can guarantee acceptance:

  • USMLE board scores
  • Letter of Reference
  • Medical School Academic Performance
  • Interest in Griffin Hospital Internal Medicine Residency program in future and prospects of becoming a resident at Griffin Hospital A Griffin Hospital observership at does not automatically result in an invitation for an interview or enhance the chances for acceptance in to our residency program.

Screening Process

Griffin Hospital reserves the right to screen any worker for drug abuse. Candidates may be asked to undergo drug testing. It is the policy of Griffin Hospital to do background checks on its employees. We routinely perform background check on sub-interns and observers. The sub-intern and observer are required to pay for this background check and/or drug testing. The cost of background check is included in the application fee. If a drug testing is mandated, additional costs will incur.


A non-refundable fee of $750. will be charged for each month of rotation. The fee is required (4) weeks prior to the start date of the rotation. Payment will only be due if acceptance to the program has been confirmed. Any additional months of rotation will require an additional non refundable fee of $750. per month of rotation.

Immunization Record

All applicants will be required to show proof of:

  • Flu vaccine (during flu season Oct-March)
  • MMR titers ( Measles, Mumps and Rubella)
  • Varicella titers 
  • PPD (within 1 year if negative, chest x-ray within 3 years if positive)

Additional Rotations

It is generally the policy of Griffin Hospital NOT to extend the duration of observership . Under certain circumstances, we will allow a person to extend the duration, such as: when there is an empty slot available which has not been filled with a new candidate In the event that a slot is available due to lack of candidate, a candidate shall make a formal request to the Coordinator for an extension. In the event that a present observer and a new application compete for a slot, preference will be given to the new candidate.


Evaluation of an observership performance is based on:

  • Teaching Attending's feedback and written evaluation
  • Resident feedback and written evaluation
  • Intern's feedback and written evaluation
  • Any other formal or informal feedback with may include:
    • Nursing evaluation
    • Patient feedback
    • Chief Resident's feedback
    • Feedback from morning reports and lectures participation

Reference Letters

A candidate may request letters of reference from the teaching attending on their team if they have had significant interaction with the attending. Additional letters can be requested from any attending with whom the candidate had significant interaction. It is the candidates' responsibility to obtain such letters. It is not the responsibility of the Committee or the Coordinator of observers these letter for you.


Free parking is provided in the lower lot across from the hospital on Seymour Avenue. There is also parking at The Center for Cancer Care at Griffin Hospital on the corner of Seymour Ave and Division St. There is no parking allowed in the upper lot. This lot is strictly for patients and/or visitors of the hospital.


Griffin Hospital does not make arrangements for lodging or rental of apartments. Candidates are directed to contacting previous observers, as we have had good results for accommodations. Candidates are also asked to share their email address amongst the team of each rotation month. Communication between each other has been very helpful with travel and/or accommodations. Please let us know if you would NOT like your email shared.


We do not provide white coats, on-call gowns, stethoscope, tendon hammers etc. It is your responsibility to obtain these items on your own. A white lab coat or jacket is required by all observers while  in the hospital.

Current Availability
2017-2018 Available rotations starting April 2017
Rotation April May  June August September October  November December January February March April May June
General Medicine Closed Closed  Closed Closed  Closed            
Cardiology Closed Closed   Closed Closed Closed                  
ICU Closed  Closed  Closed Closed    Closed                  

Contact Information

Please review all above information carefully. If you have any further questions, please contact Monika Chmielewska, Observership Program Coordinator.

Please do not send program inquiries to the Program Directors or faculty.