World-Class Leadership Training with CHOP in Mexico

Jul 2, 2024

As the sun sets on another remarkable year of the OMI and CHOP partnership in Mexico, we conclude an impactful course on Medical Leadership, hosted in the vibrant heart of Mexico City. The event, led by esteemed faculty from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), marks the end of a stellar series of four OMI MEX/ CHOP seminars.

The Open Medical Institute is profoundly grateful for the collaboration with CHOP, whose dedication and expertise have enriched the four seminars held in partnership this year. These seminars spanned areas of world-renowned expertise of CHOP, such as Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Pediatric Allergy and Immunology, Pediatric Infectious Diseases, finally culminating with this transformative Medical Leadership course. Each event has left a mark on the participants and has advanced the mission of OMI to elevate medical education and leadership in Mexico and Latin America with OMI MEX.

The Medical Leadership course is a component of OMI’s Leadership Program, which aims to equip emerging physician leaders with the necessary skills to excel in medical leadership, education, and public health. This comprehensive program is designed to empower OMI alumni to assume pivotal roles within their healthcare systems in their home countries, fostering positive change and enhanced healthcare delivery.

Dr. Evan S. Fieldston, Vice President and Associate Chief Medical Officer for Philadelphia Campus at CHOP, directed the seminar. Reflecting on the program, Dr. Fieldston stated:

“The OMI MEX/ AMSA program in Medical Leadership provides an outstanding opportunity for emerging physician leaders from Mexico to grow their leadership skills with an extraordinary opportunity for our faculty from CHOP to engage in a most meaningful way in pursuit of better health and well-being beyond our own institution. Our multi-disciplinary team from CHOP shared valuable information about effective leadership, grounded in leading oneself related to emotional intelligence, communication style, and leadership behaviors. The fellows showed high energy and engagement and practiced the skills learned through peer coaching that led to excellent presentations on their leadership challenges. Along with my faculty colleagues, as course director I can say that we are honored and thrilled to be able to share knowledge, learn from the fellows, and work with them to grow leadership capabilities. In my role as course director, I was so gratified to see the high level of participation throughout the program and the fantastic ways in which the fellows applied their learnings, as evident in their presentations. My co-faculty and I are confident that the fellows will make positive change in their organizations and for Mexico and we look forward to hearing about their successes in the future.”

Joining Dr. Fieldston were Dr. Brendon Ardieta, Assistant Vice President of Strategic Planning at CHOP; Dr. Scott Switalski, Senior Manager of Leadership and Professional Development for CHOP; and Dr. Patricia A. DeRusso, Chief Physician Affairs Officer at CHOP. Their collective expertise provided a robust and dynamic learning experience, highly relevant to the training of doctors in Mexico and Latin America. The creation of OMI’s leadership program was based on the understanding that not everyone had access to top quality leadership training to assume such positions. We firmly believe that this can be addressed through high quality education and research through a collaborative approach, and the Medical Leadership seminar precisely translated this.

The course schedule was crafted with each day focusing on different facets of leadership:

Day 1: Leading Self – This day commenced with an interactive discussion on the essence of leadership, the importance of adaptable leadership behaviors, and the specific challenges faced by the fellows in their roles. Activities centered around understanding and improving communication styles set the stage for personal growth.

Day 2: Leading Others – Participants delved into team building, change management, and the art of persuasion and negotiation. The highlight was a peer coaching session where fellows practiced their new skills in small groups, culminating in the preparation of their presentations.

Day 3: Leading an Organization – The seminar concluded with strategic planning discussions and final presentations by the fellows. These presentations synthesized their leadership challenges and learnings from the week, demonstrating the profound impact of the course.

The Open Medical Institute extends its heartfelt gratitude to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and its distinguished faculty for their commitment and partnership. This series of seminars has not only advanced medical knowledge but has also forged stronger ties between medical professionals in Mexico and their counterparts in the United States. As we look forward to future collaborations, the success of this year’s seminars stands as a testament to the power of shared knowledge and the enduring impact of exceptional medical leadership education.

Last but not least, we would like to extend an immense thank you to our OMI MEX/CHOP 2024 course directors: Drs. Alix Seif and Michele Lambert (Pediatric Hematology and Oncology), Dr. Rushani Saltzman (Pediatric Allergy and Immunology), Dr. Paul Planet (Pediatric Infectious Diseases), and Dr. Evan Fieldston (Medical Leadership). Cheers for more years to come!

Attending this seminar was a transformative experience. I had the opportunity to delve deeply into various aspects of leadership, from system thinking to the flexibility required to adapt in a multitude of circumstances. Understanding leadership styles, such as transformational, servant, and situational, enables me to foster a culture of collaboration and innovation in my workplace.
Alonso Alejandro Hernandez Chavez, MD

OMI MEX fellow from Mexico City, Mexico

This seminar was the main event of the year for me. I got to learn about amazing styles of leadership applicable in my own country. Everyone discovered new ways to communicate, to be emphatic, forming good teams and develop all the new strategies necessary adaptable in each hospital or workplace.
María Citlalli Casillas, MD

OMI MEX fellow from Guadalajara, Mexico

Dr. Switalski’s capacity to motivate and engage us in the class was outstanding. I learned valuable self-awareness and group knowledge tools. Additionally, the faculty led a DISC assessment activity to enforce practical approaches, which we don’t see often in these courses. The activity significantly strengthened the positive dynamics within the group, as we found inspiration among our peers by learning about their strengths.
Marcela Yanes López, MD

OMI MEX fellow from Monterrey, Mexico