1) Collection of Personal Information from Site Users
While using our Sites and the App, you may choose to provide personal information to us in the process of completing various on-line forms for updating your ECFMG record or account and for participation in ECFMG’s programs and services for international medical students/graduates, international medical schools, U.S. medical licensing authorities, U.S. graduate medical education programs, credentialing agencies, and others. This information may include, but is not limited to, your name, gender, date of birth, e-mail address, postal address, telephone number, credit card or electronic check information, social security and/or national identification numbers, country of birth, citizenship, family status, employment information and information related to your medical education, training, and registration/licensure. This information may also include your photo; image of your passport; and images of documents related to your medical education, training, and registration/licensure. You may also choose to provide personal information to us in the process of filling out an on-line application for employment with ECFMG. This information may include, but is not limited to, your name, e-mail address, postal address, telephone number, employment history, and list of references. By providing your personal information on-line, you consent to allow ECFMG to use that information in accordance with this Policy.
In general, applicants for participation in ECFMG’s programs and services and applicants for employment with ECFMG are required to respond to all of the questions on our application forms. During the course of applying for ECFMG Certification, applicants may be asked about their ethnicity. Applicants for Certification, however, are not required to provide information regarding ethnicity. Providing information regarding your ethnicity is optional and choosing a particular answer or choosing not to provide this information will not affect the outcome of your application for ECFMG Certification. ECFMG uses information about the ethnicity of its applicants for research purposes, and it is kept confidential. Except in cases where ECFMG is recruiting standardized patients to participate in clinical skills exams, ECFMG does not require candidates for employment to provide information regarding ethnicity.
If, for any reason, you choose not to provide your personal information on-line, you may obtain certain of our available forms from the Sites or the App and mail them to us. To request a single copy of any available publication or form, contact ECFMG by telephone at (215) 386-5900, by fax at (215) 386-9196, or in writing at the address listed below in “Inquiries and Concerns.”
Through the ECFMG Medical School Web Portal (EMSWP), ECFMG provides international medical schools with access to a program through which they can upload medical school transcripts, Medical Student Performance Evaluations (MSPEs), and letters of recommendation (LoRs) on behalf of their students and graduates who participate in the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS®) of the Association of American Medical Colleges. If your school participates in the EMSWP ERAS program and you have registered with AAMC’s ERAS website, your school may transmit to ECFMG via the Internet your medical school transcript, MSPE, and LoRs. Medical schools that choose not to participate in EMSWP for the purpose of verifying the status of their students/graduates who apply to ECFMG for the United States Medical Licensing Examination® (USMLE®) may continue to use our established paper-based verification process.
Through EMSWP, ECFMG provides international medical schools with access to a program through which they can verify the authenticity of medical education credentials of the schools’ students and graduates. These credentials include medical diplomas, final medical school transcripts, and transcripts to document transferred credits. If your school participates in the EMSWP Credentials Verification program, your school may transmit to ECFMG via the Internet your medical diploma and transcripts. Your school also may transmit to ECFMG additional information about your education, including your dates of attendance; the date your medical degree was conferred; the title of your medical degree; title of your undergraduate degree; and details on unusual circumstances that occurred during your medical education, including interruptions or exceptions and the reasons for same, academic or disciplinary probation, disciplinary action, investigations, and limitations and/or special requirements imposed upon you. Medical schools that choose not to participate in EMSWP Credentials Verification may continue to use our established paper-based credential verification process.
Through the Exchange Visitor Network (EVNet), ECFMG provides authorized Training Program Liaisons (TPLs) at U.S. teaching hospitals and research institutions with the ability to submit information and supporting documentation on-line to ECFMG about positions that have been offered to physicians who are applying to ECFMG for J-1 visa sponsorship. If you are a physician applying to ECFMG for J-1 sponsorship, the TPL at your proposed program will use EVNet to provide to ECFMG certain information about the position offered to you, including the specialty/subspecialty, post-graduate year (PGY) level, training dates, and stipend. If you are a TPL using EVNet to submit information to ECFMG about such positions, certain information about you, including your name and contact information, will be available to the physicians who have been offered these positions.
Through the On-line Applicant Status and Information System (OASIS), ECFMG provides applicants for J-1 visa sponsorship with the ability to submit personal information about themselves and their proposed J-2 dependents, to upload supporting documentation, and to review and accept the details of positions offered to them. If you are applying to ECFMG for J-1 sponsorship, you will be required to provide to ECFMG information, such as your country of most recent legal permanent residence, information about previous J-1 visa sponsorship, and a statement of educational objectives. If you also are applying to ECFMG for J-2 visa sponsorship for your dependents, you will be required to provide to ECFMG the dependents’ personal information, including name as it appears on their passport, gender, date of birth, relationship to you, country of birth, country of citizenship, country of most recent legal permanent residence, and, if applicable, USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number.
Through OASIS, ECFMG provides ERAS applicants with the ability to submit Medical Student Performance Evaluations (MSPEs), medical school transcripts, photographs, Postgraduate Training Authorization Letter (PTAL) or “California Letter”, and letters of recommendation (LoRs). Applicants who choose not to submit these documents electronically through OASIS may be able to have certain documents submitted electronically on their behalf by their medical schools and/or their letter writers.
Through the Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPICSM) Physician Portal, ECFMG provides physicians with the ability to upload medical credentials, to have those credentials primary-source verified by ECFMG and stored in a web-based repository, and to request credentials and verification reports for medical regulatory authorities, medical education and training programs, hospitals, and other entities. To use the EPIC Physician Portal, you will be required to provide your name, date of birth, country of birth, country of citizenship at birth, country of citizenship at entrance to medical school, current country of citizenship, e-mail address, postal address, information related to your medical education, photo, image of your passport, and credit card or electronic check information. Through the EPIC Report Portal, ECFMG also provides medical regulatory authorities, medical education and training programs, hospitals, and other entities with web-based access to credentials and verification reports requested by physicians. To use the EPIC Report Portal, your institution will be required to provide your name, job title, date of birth, country of birth, e-mail address, and telephone number to ECFMG.
Applications for ECFMG Certification, USMLE, J visa sponsorship, EPIC, GEMx Electives, employment with ECFMG, and participation in ECFMG’s IMG Advisors Network (IAN) may not be obtained from the Sites or the App or requested via phone, fax, or mail. Such applications must be completed on-line through the Sites. Requests to have results of a USMLE exam administration withheld from a User’s medical school may not be made via phone, fax, or mail. Such requests must be made on-line through the ECFMG Web Site at www.ecfmg.org.
As part of ECFMG’s pledge to protect your privacy, we employ Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology and password protection to portions of the Sites and to the App to prevent unauthorized access to your personal information. In order to access your personal information, you must first authenticate your identity by entering your user id, password, and, in some cases, answers to challenge questions. All authentication mechanisms are secured by SSL technology. Similarly, as you prepare to pay for your programs and services, you will enter our secure payment system and will have a limited amount of time to enter the required information. Please note that, other than the authentication mechanisms, payment system, on-line employment application, OASIS, IWA, IMED, IMED Subscription Service, CVS ON-LINE, IAN, EMSWP, EVNet, Live Chat, EPIC, GEMx Electives, and MyECFMG, pages are not secured by SSL or other encryption programs.
Please note that, while ECFMG has endeavored to create Sites and an App that are secure and reliable for Users, the confidentiality of any communication transmitted to or from ECFMG via the Sites, the App, or e-mail cannot be guaranteed. Accordingly, ECFMG is not responsible for the security of information transmitted via the Internet.
3) Use of Personal Information Collected
ECFMG uses the personal information you provide in order to maintain the information in your ECFMG record or account, process your applications and requests for or participation in services and in order to verify that you meet the minimum qualifications for our programs and services or for employment with ECFMG. Additionally, ECFMG may use aggregated personal information for research and statistical purposes. ECFMG does not use your personal information for marketing or promotional purposes. In connection with on-line employment applications, except where you tell ECFMG not to, we will keep the information that you submit for future consideration.
4) Disclosure of Personal Information to Third Parties
The USMLE is sponsored jointly by the National Board of Medical Examiners® (NBME®) and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB). In order to ensure an efficient and accurate examination process for applicants for ECFMG Certification, portions of the personal information they provide to us are retained in a database shared by ECFMG, NBME, and FSMB for the purposes of exam registration and scheduling. As a result, if you apply for examination, the NBME and FSMB will have access to your personal information in this capacity. Additionally, this information, as well as performance data from the examination, is used by these organizations for research and statistical purposes, although only in the aggregate.
Through EMSWP, ECFMG provides international medical schools with access to Status Verification, a web-based program for verifying the status of their students and graduates who apply to ECFMG for the USMLE. If you apply to ECFMG for examination and your medical school participates in EMSWP Status Verification, ECFMG and your medical school will exchange certain information contained in your ECFMG and medical school records, such as your name, USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number, medical school identification number, enrollment status, and examination/eligibility period applied for, via the Internet for the purpose of verifying your status and, thus, your eligibility for examination.
Through EMSWP, ECFMG also provides international medical schools with access to data on the performance of their students and graduates on USMLE. If your medical school is eligible to obtain performance data through EMSWP, ECFMG will provide your medical school with certain information via the Internet, such as your name, USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number, medical school identification number (if applicable), examination taken, exam date, whether you passed or failed the exam administration, and for Step 1 and Step 2 CK, your numerical score. If the exam result is classified as indeterminate and/or if there was a finding of irregular behavior for the exam administration, these will be noted. If you were provided test accommodations for the exam administration, this will be noted as applicable. All medical schools that use EMSWP to obtain performance data agree to use the data only for appropriate academic purposes (such as program evaluation and faculty development) and for the preparation of required reports to governmental agencies.
Applicants who register for USMLE exams with ECFMG may request to have their exam results withheld from their medical school. In this case, the information provided to the medical school will indicate that the exam results were withheld at the request of the examinee. For more information on ECFMG’s practices regarding the provision of performance data to medical schools and the process by which examinees can request to have their exam results withheld from their medical school, review the Important Information on this topic.
Through EMSWP, ECFMG also provides international medical schools with access to a program through which they can upload medical school transcripts, MSPEs, and LoRs on behalf of their students and graduates who participate in ERAS. International medical schools can also use EMSWP to track receipt of these supporting documents by ECFMG. If your school participates in the EMSWP ERAS program and you request an ERAS Token from ECFMG and/or register that Token with AAMC’s ERAS website, ECFMG will provide your medical school with certain information via the Internet, such as your name; USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number; AAMC Identification Number; date of birth; date on which your Token was requested; whether you have indicated you are a student or a graduate; whether or not you participated in the previous ERAS season; whether or not a photograph, medical school transcript, MSPE, and LoRs have been submitted to ECFMG as part of your ERAS application; and the date on which these documents were submitted to ECFMG.
Through EMSWP, ECFMG also provides international medical schools with access to a program through which they can verify the authenticity of medical education credentials of the schools’ students and graduates. If your school participates in the EMSWP Credentials Verification program, ECFMG may provide your medical school with certain information via the Internet, such as your name, gender, date of birth, USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number, medical school identification number, and, if applicable, EPIC Identification Number. ECFMG also may provide your medical school with copies of certain documents via the Internet, such as your medical credentials, medical school release forms, Certification of Identification Form (Form 186) or Certification Statement (Form 183), and, if applicable, EPIC Identification Form.
If you are a medical school staff member and use EMSWP, your medical school’s EMSWP Coordinator will have access to your EMSWP User Name, and will have access to and be able to request changes to personal information associated with your EMSWP account, including your name, date of birth, birth country, job title, and contact information, including your e-mail address. This information may be exchanged with ECFMG via the Internet. Additionally, actions that you perform in EMSWP may be associated with your name, and other authorized users at your medical school may have access to this information. If you use EMSWP Credentials Verification to verify medical education credentials, a digitized image of your signature will be included in verifications that you submit to ECFMG via the Internet.
Through EVNet, ECFMG provides authorized Training Program Liaisons (TPLs) with the ability to submit information and supporting documentation on-line to ECFMG about positions that have been offered to physicians who are applying to ECFMG for J-1 visa sponsorship and to manage the J-1 visa sponsorship process. If you are applying to ECFMG for J-1 visa sponsorship or are currently sponsored by ECFMG for the J-1 visa, ECFMG may provide to the TPL via the Internet certain information about you and your J-2 dependents, such as name, USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number, gender, date of birth, and information on countries of citizenship and most recent legal permanent residence.
Applicants for examination should also note that by signing and submitting the Certification Statement or Certification of Identification Form associated with the USMLE application, you authorize ECFMG to transmit the information contained in your application, or that otherwise may become available to ECFMG, to “any federal, state or local governmental department or agency, to any hospital or to any other organization or individual who, in the judgment of ECFMG, has a legitimate interest in such information.”
Physicians who request an EPIC Physician Portal account should note that by signing and submitting the EPIC Identification Form associated with establishing an account, you authorize ECFMG to transmit any information in its possession, or that may otherwise become available to ECFMG, bearing on the content of your request or any other document submitted to ECFMG, to “any federal, state, or local governmental department or agency, to any hospital or to any other organization or individual who, in the judgment of ECFMG, has a legitimate interest in such information.”
By participating in IAN as an advisor, you acknowledge that information about yourself that you submit to the IAN database, such as your family status, training institution, and training specialty, and other information from your ECFMG record, such as your name, gender, and medical school, will be available to eligible users of the IAN database. Advisees who select an advisor from the IAN database acknowledge that personal information from their ECFMG record and application for ECFMG J-1 visa sponsorship, including their name, medical school, graduation year, and training specialty and institution, as well as the e-mail address they submit to the IAN database will be sent by e-mail to each advisor they select, unless they choose not to include such information in the e-mail message to the selected advisor.
If you are approved for J-1 visa sponsorship by ECFMG, personal information about you and your J-2 dependents and information about the position offered to you will be shared with the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a U.S. government database administered by the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Additionally, in accordance with the requirements of ECFMG’s designation by the Department of State as a J-1 visa sponsor, ECFMG may be required to disclose personal information to third parties.
ECFMG also shares certain information about applicants for ECFMG Certification (e.g., name, ECFMG applicant number and certification status, medical school and/or date of birth) with the American Medical Association (the “AMA”) and the Association of American Medical Colleges (the "AAMC"). These organizations use the data that we provide to update and maintain their medical provider databases.
Through the EPIC Physician Portal, ECFMG provides Users with the ability to upload their medical credentials to ECFMG and to request primary-source verification of those credentials. As part of the primary-source verification process, ECFMG provides authorized staff of the institution/organization that issued the credential with access via the Internet to an electronic copy of the credential and to certain information, such as the User’s name, gender, photograph, date of birth, EPIC Identification Number, and, if applicable, medical school identification number.
Through the EPIC Physician Portal, ECFMG also provides Users with the ability to request reports demonstrating the authenticity of their credentials for medical regulatory authorities, medical licensing and training organizations, hospitals, and other entities. These reports, which ECFMG makes available to these organizations via the Internet, include information such as the User’s name, date of birth, gender, and photograph. ECFMG also provides the organization with access to a copy of the medical credential for which the report was requested and may also provide the associated English translation, if applicable.
To become an authorized User of the EPIC Report Portal, you must provide designated individual(s) at your organization with personal information including your name, date of birth, job title, and contact information, including your e-mail address. Your organization will provide this information to ECFMG. To change the personal information associated with your account, you must provide the updated information to your organization’s EPIC Coordinator. Your organization’s EPIC Coordinator will exchange the information with ECFMG via e-mail.
Through GEMx Electives, ECFMG provides eligible medical students with the ability to search and apply for electives offered through GEMx by GEMx-participating medical schools. If you are a student participating in GEMx Electives, the information and documents you provide in the process of establishing a GEMx account and applying to electives through GEMx will be accessible to the school in which you are enrolled (your “home” school) and to the schools to which you apply for electives (potential “host” schools).
Other than the instances described above, or as ECFMG shall notify User of in the future, ECFMG pledges not to sell, rent, offer, or otherwise disclose any personal information, such as names, e-mail addresses, postal addresses, telephone numbers, credit card information, employment history and other personal information that User voluntarily provides to ECFMG, to any organization or individual without such a legitimate interest (collectively “Third Parties”), except to the extent necessary to comply with applicable laws or valid legal processes, or to protect the rights or property of ECFMG.
5) Access and Ability to Correct Personal Data
Using the EPIC Physician Portal, properly identified Users may access and change such personal information as postal address, e-mail address, telephone and fax numbers, social security number and/or national identification number, and information related to their medical education, training, and registration/licensure. Properly identified Users may also use the EPIC Physician Portal to check the status of their financial account and the status of the verification of their credentials and verification reports. To request changes to certain personal information, including name, date of birth, and gender, Users must contact EPIC Support Services at ECFMG at email@example.com.
To change or update their personal information, authorized Users of the EPIC Report Portal should contact their organization’s EPIC Coordinator. The organization’s EPIC Coordinator can request such changes for all Users at the organization by contacting EPIC Support Services at ECFMG at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Using OASIS or MyECFMG, properly identified applicants for ECFMG Certification and ECFMG-certified physicians may access and verify or change such personal information as name of record, postal address, e-mail address, fax number and status of their financial account. You may also check the status of items such as your USMLE applications and score reports, USMLE scheduling permits, and medical education credentials. In order to add to or change information in OASIS or MyECFMG, you must have both your USMLE/ECFMG Identification Number and a password. If you do not have a password, you may obtain one by accessing OASIS or MyECFMG and following the instructions for establishing a new account. OASIS and MyECFMG are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with the exception of maintenance periods.
Upon a properly authenticated request via postal mail, ECFMG will provide Users who are applicants for ECFMG Certification or ECFMG-certified physicians access to personal information that cannot be otherwise accessed through OASIS or MyECFMG, such as credit card information, social security and/or national identification numbers, which User may then change or update. To request access to your personal information, you may write to us at the address listed below in “Inquiries and Concerns.”
Users of EMSWP can request changes to their personal information by contacting their medical school’s EMSWP Coordinator. The EMSWP Coordinator can request such changes for all Users at the medical school by accessing EMSWP at https://emswp.ecfmg.org. The medical school’s EMSWP Coordinator can also request such changes by contacting ECFMG’s EMSWP Administrator by e-mail at email@example.com. ECFMG’s EMSWP Administrator will review these requests and, if approved, implement the requested changes.
Users of EVNet can make changes to their contact information through EVNet.
Applicants for employment may update their information through the on-line employment application at https://ecfmgjobs.iapplicants.com/application.php.
Individuals participating as advisors in IAN may update certain information in their Advisor Profiles by accessing IAN at https://secure2.ecfmg.org/emain.asp?app=ian_advisor.
Individuals participating in IAN as advisees may update certain information in their profiles by accessing IAN at https://secure2.ecfmg.org/emain.asp?app=ian_advisee.
Users of GEMx Electives can update certain of their personal information by accessing their account at https://students.gemxelectives.org.
6) Links to and from ECFMG
The Sites and the App may contain links to other Internet web sites. However, ECFMG does not endorse, and is not responsible for, the privacy practices or the content of these web sites.
7) Inquiries and Concerns
Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG)
3624 Market Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104-2685
Phone: (215) 386-5900
Fax: (215) 386-9196