Programs Overview

ECFMG offers a variety of programs for international physicians and other members of the international medical education and regulatory communities. An overview of each program is available below. For detailed information, visit the program’s section of this website.

ECFMG Certification

ECFMG’s program of certification assesses whether international medical graduates are ready to enter U.S. graduate medical education programs that are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). ACGME requires international medical graduates who enter ACGME-accredited programs to be certified by ECFMG. ECFMG Certification assures directors of accredited residency and fellowship programs, and the people of the United States, that international medical graduates have met minimum standards of eligibility.

Certification Verification Service (CVS)

ECFMG’s Certification Verification Service provides prompt, primary-source verification of an international medical graduate’s ECFMG certification status. ECFMG’s CVS provides this verification to entities in the United States that rely on ECFMG Certification to evaluate the qualifications of international physicians. These entities include credentialing agencies; accredited residency programs; state medical licensing boards; and other organizations, such as hospitals and HMOs.

ERAS Support Services at ECFMG

The Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS®), developed by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), allows web-based application to first- and second-year (PGY-1 and PGY-2) residency positions in accredited U.S. programs of graduate medical education. ECFMG has been designated by AAMC to assist international medical students and graduates with the ERAS process. In this role, ECFMG issues ERAS Tokens, which allow international medical students/graduates to complete their residency applications on the AAMC website. ECFMG also collects and transmits supporting documents and transmits reports of ECFMG certification status and USMLE transcripts.

Exchange Visitor Sponsorship Program (J-1 visa)

ECFMG is authorized by the U.S. Department of State to sponsor foreign national physicians for the J-1 Exchange Visitor visa for the purpose of participating in U.S. programs of graduate medical education or training. ECFMG is responsible for ensuring that Exchange Visitors and their host institutions meet the federal requirements for participation in the Exchange Visitor Program. ECFMG’s Exchange Visitor Sponsorship Program provides instruction and guidance to teaching hospitals, medical specialty organizations, universities, and international physicians on the credential and immigration requirements for J-1 visa sponsorship.

ECFMG Certificate Holders Office (ECHO)

The ECFMG Certificate Holders Office (ECHO) provides free career planning resources for physicians pursuing ECFMG Certification and graduate medical education (GME) in the United States. Through ECHO, certified physicians can stay connected with ECFMG; communicate with ECFMG; and access a library of resources they need to be better prepared and organized when making important career decisions.

Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPICSM)

EPIC is an on-line tool for physicians and the entities that register/license, employ, train, and educate them. EPIC allows physicians to build a web-based career portfolio of their primary-source verified medical credentials and to have reports on the authenticity of those credentials sent electronically to any organization, anywhere in the world. Medical regulatory authorities, hospitals, academic institutions, and other entities use EPIC to access verification reports on the credentials of their physician applicants.

Provision of USMLE Performance Data to International Medical Schools

ECFMG provides eligible international medical schools with individual and aggregate data on the performance of their students and graduates who apply to ECFMG for USMLE Step 1 and USMLE Step 2 Clinical Knowledge (CK).

GEMxsm – Global educational exchange in medicine and the health professions

GEMx is a global partnership for international educational exchange in medicine and the health professions. GEMx Partners are medical schools and other institutions around the world that share a commitment to making international exchange a part of their education programs, and to providing students in medicine and the health professions with increased access to educational exchange opportunities. GEMx’s innovative web-based system both streamlines and enhances the exchange process. Using the GEMx system, participating institutions can publish their elective exchange opportunities on-line and provide detailed information about these opportunities. They can also verify student eligibility and monitor student applications and activity. Students of participating institutions can use the GEMx system to research elective exchange opportunities on-line, and apply directly to participating institutions for opportunities that match their career goals and interests using GEMx’s paperless application process. Students can explore electives based on such information as learning objectives, prerequisites, fees, languages of instruction, and travel information.

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