Photo Credit: Sandy Zarka



Guiding and Sustaining Leaders

To improve world health by mentoring a new generation of leaders, the UCLA Center for World Health provides clinical, research, and humanitarian education and training for medical students, residents, fellows, and faculty from UCLA and around the world. Programs at the UCLA campus and at clinical and research training sites in diverse international settings encourage learners to engage health challenges worldwide through a compassionate and humanistic lens. The Center’s Global Health Education Programs are led by Drs. Tom Coates, Lee Miller, Tanya Arora, Dan DeUgarte, Jorge Lazareff, and Traci Wells. For more information, please email Traci Wells at

Please visit our EXPLORE database for a comprehensive view of the global education and training programs conducted by faculty at the David Geffen School of Medicine and UCLA Health in collaboration with international partners.


Programs for UCLA medical students include international clinical and research electives, a global health selective course, an intensive global health pathway, and opportunities to engage and network with global health leaders.


Information on international electives and global health learning opportunities at several of the Residency Programs at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.


The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA offers a variety of pre- and postdoctoral fellowships for U.S. and international scholars. We maintain a comprehensive, interactive database of our fellowship opportunities.


Our educational endeavors are broad, from advanced training for physicians from around the world to course offerings open to the public. We seek to engage and inspire faculty and students from diverse disciplines and institutions, from the U.S. as well as other countries.


The UCLA Center for World Health holds lectures, discussion groups, and special events throughout the year on a variety of cutting-edge topics from experts in global health and international medicine.


This resource serves as an overview of some of the possibilities for global health careers and the training required, as well as links to global health job listings and sources of funding for global health fellows and other trainees.


  • Photo: Uday Devaskar at Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital (DMH) with Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, and Rajan Joshi, Director of the DMH NICU.

    Monday, July 3, 2017

    Uday P. Devaskar, MD, Chief of Neonatology at UCLA’s Department of Pediatrics, has dedicated his career to improving the health and well-being of neonates (babies in the first four weeks of life). Since 2001, Dr. Devaskar has been building a close collaboration with Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital (DMH), a charitable, 800-bed multispecialty hospital in Pune, India.

    Dr. Devaskar’s program with DMH has resulted in the institution becoming a center of excellence for high-tech newborn patient care, education, and research. DMH’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) has expanded from 16 to 45 beds, and the excellence of its care for newborns is now comparable to that of the NICU at UCLA. DMH also has emerged as a center of education and training for physicians and nurses in Pune and in surrounding areas in India.

    On December 8, 2016, Dr. Devaskar was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Neonatology Forum, the largest scientific body of professionals involved in managing newborn care in India. Dr. Devaskar was presented with this prestigious award as a way to recognize his major contributions to improving the health of newborns in India.

    Photo: UCLA medical students participating in microbiology rounds on the infectious disease service at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Monday, June 19, 2017

    It is a particularly exciting time to study global health at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, as there are a large variety of opportunities for medical students to customize their global health training and experiences. The Global Health Education Program through the UCLA Center for World Health offers a variety of educational programs for UCLA medical students, including classroom-based learning, field-based research opportunities, as well as global health clinical experiences during students’ last year of study.

    This year, CWH facilitated global health clinical electives for 39 fourth year medical students. Students participated in electives in China, Ghana, India, Malawi, Mozambique, Peru, South Africa, and Thailand. The clinical elective is a highly tailored experience, providing students exposure to a variety of services, including emergency medicine, family medicine, infectious diseases, ob-gyn, ophthalmology, pediatrics, and surgery.

    CWH also provided financial support to 17 students who participated in a medical Spanish elective in Costa Rica. In total, more than 30 percent of the graduating class participated in a credit-bearing elective abroad.

    For many students, the elective provides a first exposure to global health and helps inform their clinical careers, prompting them to envision how they might incorporate global health activities during residency and beyond. Furthermore, students find that skills gained abroad are applicable not only to international settings, but also to their domestic medical practice.

    According to Elizabeth Fisseha, a recent graduate who completed an elective in Chennai, India, “Witnessing the excellent clinical expertise, multilingualism, and cultural sensitivity of physicians here has inspired me to continue to hone my own clinical and language skills so that I may be able to communicate with patients from various backgrounds here in the U.S.”

    Sarah Mottahedan, who traveled to Lilongwe, Malawi, expressed similar sentiments stating, “As healthcare professionals and as patients, we take our healthcare system for granted and we don’t consider the costs to our healthcare system. After working in a limited resource area, I realize that we can be both grateful for the resources we have at our disposal for patient care and, on the other hand, we can also be more conscious about what is needed to care for patients.”
    Photograph: Shane Tubbs (Chief Scientific Officer, Seattle Science Foundation), Jorge Lazareff (Director of Latin American Initiatives, UCLA Center for World Health), and Rod Oskouian (Board President and CEO, SSF)

    By Fedra Djourabchi
    Director of External Relations at the UCLA Center for World Health

    The UCLA Center for World Health (CWH) and the Seattle Science Foundation (SSF) – a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the quality of patient care through education, research, innovation and technology- have partnered with the goal of training and bettering physicians around the globe.

    Through an international communication platform, the two institutions aim to bring together medical and scientific communities from around the world, and provide all of the tools necessary for physicians and researchers to make groundbreaking advancements in the field of medicine, particularly in neuro-surgery, neuroscience research and anatomy.

    Starting with Latin America, the Center’s vision is to become SSF’s gateway to global communities and amplify our global health work through the joint development of training videos, interactive courses and live broadcasts.

    Our approach would be two-fold: on one hand geared towards the medical students – representing the future Minister of Health of any nation, and the future clinical neuroscientists – in this instance, we will work through our partner universities in various countries to offer the courses. The curriculum would be based on the needs of each University program, and will encompass subjects such as Anatomy of the Brain, and Anatomy of the Spinal Cord.

    On the other hand, we would offer a program adapted to the needs of global health care providers. Using our connection with local entities such as the different neurological societies in each country, we will deliver a series of pathology-oriented courses to surgeons, following a horizontal conversation and needs’ assessment. Emphasis will be put on a thorough understanding of the best course of treatment, depending on the pathology of the disease, thus improving diagnostic skills and management techniques.

    In March 2017, to mark the start of our collaboration and as part of the Swedish Neuroscience Institute Neurosurgical Grand Rounds Series, the Seattle Science Foundation invited UCLA Professor Emeritus Jorge Lazareff to speak about the Global Brain and Chiari Malformations to an audience of neurosurgeons in Seattle, Washington.

    During the same visit, Dr. Lazareff and Dr. Tubbs recorded a didactic lecture on the importance of the study of anatomy and performed a lumbar dorsal Rhizotomy- a neurosurgical procedure that selectively destroys problematic nerve roots in the spinal cord – most often to relieve the symptoms of neuromuscular conditions and chronic pain. The session, broadcasted on Facebook Live, was viewed a record number of times from countries all around the world.

    As the field of neurosurgery continues to rapidly advance, there is a definite need for continued training of current and future healthcare providers in the specialty. Our goal is to address this significant need and improve patient outcomes.