Rebuilding graduate medical education after a crisis: Perspectives of medical residents in the United Arab Emirates

Fatma Mahmoud, Aiat Ghadban, Thana Harhara, Halah Ibrahim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pandemics create unprecedented public health challenges that require compre-hensive and coordinated responses from health care systems and can, thereby, cause sub-stantial and prolonged disruption to residency training. The coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted medical education worldwide. Currently, there is a gap in the literature from the trainee’s perspective, and little advice on resuming post-pandemic opera-tions. As internal medicine residents serving on the frontlines of a COVID-19 designated government hospital in the United Arab Emirates, we also faced significant challenges and uncertainties during the pandemic. We are fortunate to have overcome the initial surges and have spent the past 6 months navigating a new reality. We believe that the COVID-19 crisis provides an opportunity for graduate medical education programs worldwide to implement targeted changes that can lead to sustainable improvements in the system. In supporting learning during these times, our residency program has adopted flexible scheduling, focused on frequent and transparent communication, incorporated different strategies to build com-munity and promote psychological wellbeing, and advanced virtual teaching modalities. The aim of this article is to share the strategies that have helped us to move forward in the aftermath of the first phases of the pandemic, whilst we prepare for the uncertainty of the future. We hope that the lessons we have learned can help inform other programs as they react and adapt to the global after-effects of this crisis.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)507-511
Number of pages5
JournalAdvances in Medical Education and Practice
StatePublished - 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Crisis response
  • Internal medicine
  • Medical education
  • Pandemic
  • Residents


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