A Comprehensive Evaluation of Obstetrics and Gynecology Residencies' Global Health Training Programs

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To compile a comprehensive summary of obstetrics and gynecology global health training programs and to describe program type, global distribution of work, effect, and reciprocity within programs.


This cross-sectional observational study identified all U.S. obstetrics and gynecology residencies with global health training programs, described residency and program characteristics, and evaluated the publications resulting from them. Eligible articles included those published in 2011–2016 about work done in a global health training location by global health training faculty. All eligible articles were evaluated for academic effect. The inclusion of host country authors on articles served as a proxy for reciprocity. Article content was assessed to evaluate whether programs addressed Millennium Development Goals.


Among 245 obstetrics and gynecology residencies, 196 (80%) had global health training programs. Location and faculty members were identified for 67 (34%) programs, of which 26 (39%) had global health training faculty who had published articles meeting inclusion criteria. Of 698 articles reviewed, 78% addressed at least one Millennium Development Goal, including 39% that addressed improving maternal health (Millennium Development Goal 5). Approximately half (48%) of authors were from host countries.


Most obstetrics and gynecology residencies are offering global health training. The majority of programmatic work addresses Millennium Development Goals and thus is aligned with global health priorities. The effect and reciprocity of global health training programs varies across institutions. Residencies could benefit from internal analysis of their global health training programs to evaluate whether knowledge gained is being disseminated and to ensure equitable partnerships and the creation of sustainable, influential initiatives.

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