Emily Gurnee, MD
Emily Gurnee, MD
Dermatology · Chicago, IL

Pediatric Dermatology in Cambodia

July 15th
Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Project Description

After completing my fellowship in pediatric dermatology, I am planning to travel to Phnom Penh to implement a short course in pediatric dermatology. I have previously completed a short course in Ethiopia, and plan to expand on previous work to cover a greater breadth of topics. Though other dermatologists have visited Phnom Penh in conjunction with Health Volunteers Overseas (HVO) previously, they have never had a pediatric dermatologist visit their site.

Population Served

I plan to supplement the existing curriculum in dermatology to focus on pediatric dermatology, an under-served field in both the United States and globally, to take care of children with severe skin disease. Pediatric patients have a unique array of skin conditions that require special expertise and training. In particular, I have an interest in the diagnosis and management of genetic skin conditions, which are particularly challenging in places around the world where genetic testing is not readily available.

Expected Impact

I plan to leave the educational materials I prepare with the residents in Phnom Penh to allow them to review the materials at a later time. I would like to establish a long-term collaboration with the site in Phnom Penh to discuss cases and learning opportunities for residents in the future.

Trip Photos & Recap

Thanks to the Dox Foundation, I had the opportunity to travel to Phnom Penh, Cambodia for two weeks to teach a short course on pediatric dermatology. Around 5-7 residents per year study dermatology at Preah Kossamak hospital over 3 years. Some stay to practice in Phnom Penh after their training, while others practice in provinces throughout the country. Patients come to Preah Kossamak hospital for dermatology services, and residents see patients with Dr. Mey in his hospital clinic. It is clear how much the physicians and residents at their hospital prioritize teaching patients how to care for their skin and increasing health literacy for their patients, many of whom struggle with poverty and inability to afford medications and treatments. During my time in Phnom Penh, I had the opportunity to teach a two week course on pediatric dermatology to the residents, focusing on essential topics unique to pediatric dermatologic care. Over two weeks, we covered topics from common (ex: care of pediatric atopic dermatitis, neonatal rashes, and vascular lesions) to rarely encountered but essential pediatric dermatoses including epidermolysis bullosa and ichthyoses. The residents were very eager to learn more pediatric dermatology, and they made teaching the lectures truly enjoyable. I was thrilled that they did very well on the review quiz I gave at the end of the two week course, and I hope to continue to share and discuss challenging pediatric cases with them going forward. I am truly thankful to the Dox Foundation for their support!