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  • Clinical Observers & Visiting Scholars

    Learn at One of the Most Dynamic Centers for Neurology and Neurosurgery in the World

    The visiting scholar and neuroscience observer program at Barrow Neurological Institute enhances the rigorous academic environment here. International scholars (fully trained neurosurgeons) who visit Barrow for short-term or extended stays greatly improve their understanding of what is possible in advanced clinical neurosurgery, as well as how the latest in neuroscience research translates into patient care. These scholars in turn enrich our learning environment by the unique international perspective they share with faculty and students on the treatment of neurosurgical patients around the world.

    Clinical Observers and Foreign Scholars Fact Sheet


    To provide visiting neuroscience faculty from around the country and especially from foreign countries the opportunity to learn techniques and skills which allow them to improve the overall treatment and care of their patients, as well as share their perspective on clinical management techniques with our residents, fellows, and attending physicians.

    Categories of Visiting Scholars

    • Foreign neurosurgeons who have been awarded an international fellowship through the Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS), the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS), the American Academy of Neurological Surgery (AAoNS), or the World Federation of Neurological Societies (WFNS)
    • Foreign neurosurgeons who have been awarded the Marjorie Newsome Travelling Fellowship, through Mercy Healthcare UK
    • Foreign neurosurgeons in their final year of training or active practice with endorsement from their neurosurgery department chairman
    • Foreign neurosurgeons who have been awarded competitive Barrow research fellowships
    • Foreign and U.S. neurosurgeons who have active leadership roles in the above organizations
    • Foreign and U.S. neurosurgeons at the chairman or program director level
    • Foreign and U.S. neurosurgeons at the request of their chairman
    • Foreign and U.S. neurosurgeons at the invitation of the director of the Barrow

    Requirements for Approval of Visiting Scholars

    Immunization Checklist

    Document Checklist

    • Current Curriculum Vitae
    • Letter of recommendation or endorsement from neurology or neurosurgery chairman (dated and on official letterhead)
    • Recent photo
    • Immunization records, including results of a recent TB test
    • Background clearance from local law enforcement authority stating no criminal records (has to be dated and on official letterhead)
    • Flu vaccination (if you are traveling from Nov. 1 to March 31)
    • Drug test clearance
    • English proficiency proof if your country’s first language is not English
    • Support letter from home institute or bank stating that enough funds are available to the scholar to cover the cost of the visit
    • Paragraph describing the educational goals and objectives of your visit to Barrow

    Educational Objectives

    Under the direction of the director of Barrow Neurological Institute, the designated neurosurgery attending physician, or the director of neurosurgery research, the following educational opportunities are available to visiting scholars:

    • Observe the most complex neurosurgical procedures in our 11 dedicated neurosurgical operating suites
    • Participate in daily teaching rounds where diagnostic decisions are made and treatment options are formulated through a multidisciplinary team approach
    • Attend weekly neurosurgery clinical conferences and neuroscience grand rounds
    • Attend monthly journal clubs where the latest peer-reviewed publications are discussed and critically evaluated
    • Conduct research projects as time and laboratory space permits
    • Participate in ongoing laboratory studies when possible
    • Gain insight into ongoing clinical research studies
    • Observe daily patient evaluation in the outpatient clinic setting


    • Visiting scholars must sign a confidentiality agreement prior to starting the program
    • Visiting scholars are not permitted to provide medical care to patients at Barrow and St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center
    • Visiting scholars are not permitted to video or photographically record patients of Barrow and St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center
    • Visiting scholars are not permitted to remove protected health information from the medical center or transmit protected health information to remote locations
    • Visiting scholars will not receive any academic credit for this experience
    • Visiting scholars may not represent themselves as anything other than a visiting scholar in a clinical observer status
    • Visiting scholars understand that they volunteer their time and that no funding is available for stipends or housing unless otherwise outlined (i.e., Mercy Healthcare UK, competitive research fellowships)
    • Visiting scholars may visit Barrow for a period of up to six months with a possible 1-time extension of an additional 6-month period
    • Visiting scholars who have been awarded a competitive research fellowship may visit Barrow for a period of up to one year with a possible 1-time extension of an additional year

    Visiting scholars must respect and comply with all hospital rules and policies—including HIPPA—regarding our patients’ right to confidentiality and privacy

    Certificate of Completion

    • Visiting scholars are awarded a letter of completion, which serves as verification of time spent at Barrow, as well as verification that educational objectives have been met
    • Visiting scholars in a competitive research fellowship will be awarded a certificate of completion

    If you are interested in an observership at Barrow Neurological Institute, please contact Ravneet Kaur at [email protected].

    About Barrow Neurological Institute
    Since our doors opened as a regional specialty center in 1962, we have grown into one of the premier destinations in the world for neurology and neurosurgery. Our experienced, highly skilled, and comprehensive team of neurological specialists can provide you with a complete spectrum of care–from diagnosis through outpatient neurorehabilitation–under one roof. Barrow Neurological Institute: Discover. Educate. Heal.