Medicine and Culture: Observerships in March 2024

Apr 10, 2024

In March, ten observers joined the list of OMI fellows to attend a one-month long clinical observership offered in leading hospitals across Austria. Eight observers completed their observerships at the Medical University of Vienna, arriving from Estonia, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Montenegro, Tanzania, and Zambia. In Salzburg, one observer from Kazakhstan joined the General Hospital of Salzburg, and in Graz, an observer from North Macedonia visited the Medical University of Graz.

Dr. Alidzhon Baltabaev from Kyrgystan shares his experience during his month in Vienna at the Dermatology Department, led by. Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Peter Weninger and Prof. Dr. Georg Stary:

Alidzhon Baltabaev, MD

Alidzhon Baltabaev, MD

OMI Observer from Kyrgystan

“It was an amazing experience to gain new knowledge and study modern approaches in the treatment of dermatological disorders.

My supervisor Prof. Dr. Georg Stary helped me organize my successful observership at different dermatology departments, such as Immunodermatology and the Dermatology Ambulance. He also taught me dermoscopy. I was curious to attend dermatological quizzes, where the residents regularly present unusual clinical cases and lecture on updates of melanoma treatments. The rounds at the inpatient dermatology clinic were interesting, with Prof. Dr. Stary giving precise explanations of differential diagnoses and treatments. I really admire the high level of professionalism and diagnostic approaches of all the doctors.

It is impossible not to mention that Vienna is the cultural center of Europe, and the city inspired me with its historical and imperial heritage: Beautiful parks, like Belvedere and Schönbrunn,  Hofburg, and wonderful museums, such as the Albertina, the History of Arts Museum, and the Museum of Natural History. An evening at the Vienna Philharmonic and State Opera, with inspirational music flowing from the amazing orchestra, fills you with peace.

To conclude, my stay in Vienna was one of the most wonderful times in my life and during my studies.”

Other observers agree with Dr. Baltabaev’s evaluation. Dr. Edita Malazogu from Kosovo, observing under Prof. Dr. Thomas Berger in the Neurology Department in Vienna, highlights how “the OMI observership has greatly contributed to [her] professional development by providing the opportunity to learn from esteemed professors and witness procedures that are not typically performed in [her] home country.”

Dr. Rauno Okas from Estonia looks at the cultural side of the exchange:

Rauno Okas, MD

Rauno Okas, MD

OMI Observer from Estonia

“I enjoyed all social events. The House of Music visit was a wonderful introduction into the cultural life of Vienna, and the Narrenturm and Billrothhaus were medically very very interesting.”

The applications to join the 2025 OMI Observership Program and experience this mix of medical excellence and cultural history will open up in April 2024!