Thanks to the joint effort of the Ministry of Health and the Polish National Agency of Academic Exchange, 17 physicians and researchers specialising in cardiology, oncology and contagious diseases will start internships in the most prestigious US medical centres. The first winners of the Franciszek Walczak scholarship include Dr hab. Michał Pędziwiatr and Dr Mateusz Hołda from the Jagiellonian University Medical College.
The scholarship scheme is based on the 2018 agreement between Polish Ministry of Health and Ministry of Science and Higher Education, and the United States Department of Health and Human Services, envisaging collaborative research and training projects in such areas as vaccine-preventable diseases and other infectious diseases, tuberculosis, pandemic influenza, chronic diseases, especially cardiovascular diseases, cancers, diabetes, pulmonary diseases, and dementia, as well as mental health.
The 3-6 year long internships will provide Polish doctors with opportunities of professional and research development and gaining valuable experience in prevention, diagnostics and treatment of the aforementioned diseases in international scientific environment.
Dr hab. Michał Pędziwiatr (Head of the Department of Endoscopic, Metabolic and Soft Tissue Malignancies Surgery at the University Hospital) will stay at the Ohio State University, whereas Dr Mateusz Hołda (JU MC Chair in Anatomy) will go to the Division of Cardiology at the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles.
The Professor Franciszek Walczak Scholarship Programme will be run until 2021 and is entirely funded by the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Poland. During three subsequent competitions, at least one hundred Polish physicians and researchers will be awarded scholarship for a research stay in the USA. Another competition will start in early 2020.
Prof. Franciszek Walczak was a long-time head of the Department of Arrhythmia at the Institute of Cardiology in Anin. His most famous achievements include conducting the first radiofrequency ablation in an adult (1992) and in a child (1994). Recognised as the doyen of Polish electrophysiology, Prof. Walczak authored or co-authored over two hundred research papers and several monographs. During his career, he collaborated with eminent researchers from all over the world (including Prof. M. Haissaguerre, Prof. K.H. Kuck, and Prof. W. Stevenson).
The full list of the scholarship winners is available on the Polish National Agency of Academic Exchange website.