Externships agencies = scam? (medclerkships, americlerkships etc) - USMLE Forums
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IMG Residency Match Forum International Medical Graduates (IMGs) discussing the residency matching process.


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  #1  
Old 03-05-2016
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Default Externships agencies = scam? (medclerkships, americlerkships etc)

Hey guys,

I've been looking for opportunities to get USCE, however getting hands-on USCE is very difficult as a graduate. Most universities only offer electives for final year medical students.

Does anyone has experience with those companies? Do program directors know that we paid for rotations and then simply disregard LORs from those sites?

What I've gathered so far about several of those companies:

AmeriClerkships: expensive, unreliable and sometimes change up your schedule right before arriving. Mostly working with privately practicing physicians, almost no inpatient exposure. Also promise "university"-affiliated rotations, however in reality it's just following a doctor who's also working in the university, but not really rounding at the university hospital at all.

MedClerkships: very expensive, almost the same as above, however I've heard they are generally more reliable and helpful than AmeriClerkships. However there's the same problem with doing rotations just with privately practicing physicians mostly at their clinic. Some rotations are done with up to 30 students O_o Seems more like they want to make as much money as possible, disregarding that you can't really learn in an environment like that.

AMO Worldwide: they are honest and tell you upfront that they only offer physician-based rotations. Also cheaper than the companies above

United Medical Rotations: they seem like they are the most "legit" company out there. Have several contracts with Caribbean schools for their students, however I don't know if they also only offer physician-based rotation or not. Additionally I have never read any reports about them here on this forum, which makes them a little suspicious. Also much cheaper than medclerkships or americlerkships
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  #2  
Old 03-05-2016
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Well, I guess these rotations could be good and bad.

When I was doing my electives (via university), the first question I was asked by an associate PD was how did I manage to get the electives (he specifically asked if it was through companies and I had to explain that the school started the clerkship program recently). So yea, some PDs would definitely know about these rotations and they understand that the companies have a tie up with the physicians, so a letter from such rotations may be looked at with suspicion. Also though these are sponsored as clerkships and you do get to do a lot, you would essentially be shadowing a physician and most likely would not have access to electronic medical records.

That being said, there are others who understand your sole purpose of participating in the rotations is to obtain us clinical exposure and in the end something is always better than nothing. Also while on the rotation, you could develop connections who could help you out with observerships/research and that could strengthen your cv.

Personally though, I would rather do an observership at good university places.
Good luck!
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  #3  
Old 03-05-2016
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Thank you Durisetister!

I'll try to look into observerships then.

If anyone else has personal experience with those agencies mentioned above or any other company, please let me know!
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  #4  
Old 03-05-2016
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Hey guys I have done many rotations last year with hospitals and also doing now with imgworld, AMO, medclerkships, and imgclinicals program. have not done ameri or the united medical rotation company

imgclinicals = helped a lot to get starting outpatient and inpatient experience becuz it was cheap only 1800. You do work with residents in the program at hospital so not as much as time with the preceptor as my other rotations. but some residents gave good reviews to me and said they will mention to residency coordinator. hoping at least 1 iv from this

Americlerkships = they have been here long time but I heard lot of bad reviews.. I checked google and there are so many upset people with the both companies americlerkships and said same company is aca advanced colleges of America which is also dr mizani. I posted some links but Not all the rotations are bad but i don't think they are honest everything. If you have good experience plz post

Imgworld = only few cities they have like Houston Atlanta and Chicago. They said all inpatient rotations but did not go with them because could not find any reviews and my friends had not heard

Chicagoclerkships = some friends did their programs but it was outpatient only and they have good reviews. Person in charge is not a doctor her name is lori but she is helping imgs and picks u up at airport. this looks like good program if you want to be in chicago only. my friend also did neurosurgery and he liked the doctor a lot.

AMO = it is a new company.. there is a guy named Kyle who is cheating medical students. He is not a doctor and scamming Imgs. Look on google for posts and there.. Some middle eastern students put lawsuits against him for not giving evals and overcharging. Stay away or legal issues I think with them. I signed with them but did not pay as they demanded the fees before giving any information

Medclerkships = very expensive and can do some rotations but they helped with research and residency help for free .. I paid a lot so if u can get cheaper on ur own go for it.. my first rotation was both outpatient and inpatient but there was 6 students at same time with 2 of the doctors

Unitedmedicalrotations = I never heard of company I think it is new and just opened.. caribbean schools are not good and their rotations are bad so I don't know how rotations will be for img as most carib are us citizens and is easier for them to get residency ... I got a lot of messages came from max_volume saying to contact them I am guessing he is working for them

all programs I can tell you it is expensive but the best point is to find the observerships on your own and u don't have to pay expensive moneys to the companies but if you are matching this year it is hard to get on your own.. U have to apply almost 8 months beforehand and work on visas situation.. All pds and chairmen know img needs usce but how else can they get??

Here is a list of some hospital programs u can get my seniors have sent me... Check out providence, Sinai, Jamaica, Cornell sites also. My colleagues got into these programs in almost 4 months time

IM and fm they have residency programs
http://orangeparkmedical.com/profess...-graduates.dot

IM fm surgery geriatrics lot of residencies
https://www.oakwood.org/Upload/docs/...20Policies.pdf

http://www.einstein.edu/education/cl...observerships/

http://m.hopkinsmedicine.org/interna...observerships/

http://portals.clevelandclinic.org/c...9/Default.aspx

http://admissions.med.miami.edu/md-p.../prerequisites

If any one can share their experiences or help with rotations I am looking for 3 months more.. Thinking about Swedish hospital with a company called stepaheadimg they have been mailing me ... My mail id is arvinpatel1988@gmail.com or u can message me.. we should create all the free rotation list opportunities in this thread I will make a new 1 with all of this information please contribute friends!
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  #5  
Old 03-05-2016
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Thanks arvinpatel for your detailed response!

Seems like most of those companies are WAY too shady for my taste.
Those websites you listed all offer observerships, but I guess no university if officially offering any externships

I'm just concerned that observerships are not enough to count as USCE. I was looking for some posts on SDN and found the following quotes:

"Observerships are a waste of time. If you don't have real USCE already, standing around watching people interview and examine patients for a couple of months (which costs you money) won't make up for that. " - an attending physicia

"Real USCE is important. Observerships are a waste of time anywhere other than that particular institution."- same attending as above

"The OP is a student and is not eligible for externships or observerships; these are usually the bottom of the barrel desperate grasps by foreign graduated physicians. It is probably too late for the OP to do a clinical elective at his SOs program in an effort to match there this year although there is no harm in asking." - a different attending

" And CLERKships are valued more than OBSERVERships…and clerkships done in a hospital with residents and fellows holds more weight than one done in some community clinician's office." - a fellow

What do you think about those statements?
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yeah.. observerships are not as good as clerkships or externships but many IMGs don't have any money and have spent so much on USMLE and exams

An Observership is not a waste in my opinion... it is very good compared to nothing and sitting in home country.. U can make contacts for sure in Observerships and the doctor can help u to get interview just by telling program director ... Hand on like clerkships is always better but for the cost you have to make best choice available
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  #7  
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So let's assume money is no problem: Would you rather do another externship with imgclinical or medclerkship over an observership?
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Old 03-05-2016
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Americlerkships are the worst of the worst. Medclerkships are also bad, just not as bad as Americlerkships, they are also VERY overpriced.

ChicagoClerkships: top notch customer service, free housing assistance, moderately priced but mainly outpatient.

The companies mentioned above have many of their rotations with the same doctors, the only difference is customer service and fees

I don't know anything about the other two.

Your best option would be Jackson Park Hospital in Chicago

Pros:
*100% inpatient if you choose to do the rotation in their hospital. They prefer students, but graduates are also seen.
*the most affordable externship (300/week, last time I checked)
*Hospital LORs
*Other companies offer rotations at their hospital sometimes for more than twice the price including those companies that I mentioned above.

Cons:
*Dangerous neighborhood, so don't live nearby.
*You have to go in person because they are very busy and no one picks up the phone or answers E-mails.
*The hospital itself is a low tier community hospital
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Last edited by r0ck_s0lid; 03-05-2016 at 05:58 PM.
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  #9  
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Thanks r0ck_s0lid!

Seems like both medclerkships and americlerkships are a scam! I don't know why they are allowed to advertise here at all even though so many people made bad experiences with those companies.

I've heard about Jackson Park Hospital, a lot of Caribbean students are also doing their rotation there and it's a real hands-on experience, heavy patient load, but not much of formal teaching. It's great to know that I should rather go there in person to get a externship.
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  #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lookingforlors View Post
Thanks r0ck_s0lid!

Seems like both medclerkships and americlerkships are a scam! I don't know why they are allowed to advertise here at all even though so many people made bad experiences with those companies.

I've heard about Jackson Park Hospital, a lot of Caribbean students are also doing their rotation there and it's a real hands-on experience, heavy patient load, but not much of formal teaching. It's great to know that I should rather go there in person to get a externship.
Try calling them or e-mailing them first, you might get lucky.
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Will do. I'm currently not even close to Illinois so that'd make it definitely easier for me
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