ALPS Offering Traveling Fellowship Opportunity
31. July 2021
Jeff Hall, Senior Contributing Editor

For clinicians who have a strong interest in limb salvage, the American Limb Preservation Society (ALPS) is providing a unique mentorship opportunity to visit with interdisciplinary teams at two leading centers of excellence in limb preservation.

The winner of the ALPS Traveling Fellowship will spend two weeks mentoring with two or more disciplines at two centers of excellence of his or her choosing (one week with each center). The goals of the ALPS Traveling Fellowship are to further develop one’s ability to facilitate interdisciplinary team care at his or her own office or facility, and perhaps bolster the clinician’s willingness to take on a future leadership role in advocating for limb preservation. The winner will receive up to $7,500 to cover expenses for travel, research and clerical assistance.

For more information, interested applicants can visit https://limbpreservationsociety.org/traveling-fellowship/ . The deadline for applications is August 1. Applicants will be notified of the award decision via e-mail and the winning applicant for the ALPS Traveling Fellowship will be announced at the upcoming DFCon conference (www.dfcon.com ) October 21-23 in San Francisco.

The ALPS Traveling Fellowship aligns closely with the organization’s mission of building “interdisciplinary bridges” between members of the limb salvage team, according to David G. Armstrong, DPM, MD, PhD, the President of ALPS.

“No clinician is an island unto herself or himself. Limb salvage is very much a team endeavor and ALPS is built to match up team members,” explains Dr. Armstrong, a Professor of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California.

Michael S. Conte, MD, the founding Scientific Chair for ALPS, calls the ALPS Traveling Fellowship a leadership opportunity and a potential springboard to making limb preservation teams more commonplace in the country.

“This unique traveling fellowship provides opportunity to build a community of leaders and expand limb preservation centers around the nation,” says Dr. Conte, a Professor and Chief of the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, and the Co-Director of the UCSF Center for Limb Preservation and Diabetic Foot at the University of California-San Francisco. “This is one of the top founding priorities of ALPS and we are excited to launch it in 2021.”

Brian Lepow, DPM, the founding Treasurer of ALPS, says there are still gaps among healthcare providers in understanding what individual disciplines such as podiatry and vascular surgery do in contributing to the mission of limb salvage, let alone having a true appreciation of how these disciplines can work together to improve outcomes in high-risk patients.

Accordingly, Dr. Lepow says there is no discipline restriction on who can apply for the ALPS Traveling Fellowship. Applicants could include an internal medicine doc, an endocrinologist, or an infectious diseases specialist, according to Dr. Lepow, an Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Division of Vascular Surgery and Endovascular Therapy at the Baylor College of Medicine. So far, early applicants for the ALPS Traveling Fellowship have included early residency graduates, seasoned podiatrists and vascular surgeons and others, notes Dr. Armstrong.

While Dr. Lepow feels that clinicians with a little more seasoning will benefit more from the dual one-week fellowships, he says that perhaps the ideal applicant is someone “who has a real passion for limb salvage and is looking to take the next steps to developing a limb preservation center of excellence in his or her own neck of the woods.”

Dr. Armstrong adds that completion of the APLS Traveling Fellowship offers certain intangible benefits as well.

“It is invaluable to visit other folks’ shops,” says Dr. Armstrong, the Director of the Southwestern Academic Limb Salvage Alliance (SALSA). “While there are differences from place to place, you see there are many things that are similar no matter where in the world you are set up. The great thing is that you generate lifelong friendships with these folks.”

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