Evaluation of a program to train Saudi Arabian physicians

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The authors evaluated a program at the University of Calgary, in Alberta, Canada, that provided residency training for 11 Saudi Arabian physicians. Through a series of semistructured meetings in 1989 involving the Saudi residents, other residents in the program, members of residency training committees, faculty, and program directors, the program was reviewed to assess whether the Saudi physicians were prepared for the program and progressed satisfactorily when compared with the other residents, whether the training and evaluation were equivalent to those of the other residents, the advantages of the program to the university, and whether the university should be pursuing opportunities to train other foreign nationals. The interviews showed that there was variability in the preparation and progress made by the Saudi residents but the benefits to the university in providing training to a small group of carefully selected foreign-trained physicians were greater than the disadvantages. The information gained during the review reinforced the need to do periodic examinations of training opportunities for foreign physicians and yielded recommendations for improving such training.

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