On October 10, the Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship (IRF) Program was launched. The program is carried out by the National Institute of Health (NIH) Armenia, Armenian American Sports Medicine Coalition (AASMC), Therapists for Armenia, Polaris EduCorp, and HENAR Foundation, co-founded by Noubar Afeyan, Ruben Vardanyan, and Arman Voskerchyan.
During the opening ceremony, the representatives of the co-founding organizations welcomed the fellowship's first participants (26 from Armenia and 4 from Artsakh) and highlighted the exceptional importance of the program.
"The idea of the project was born two years ago when together with our partners we carried out an assessment of the rehab system in Armenia. The assessment indicated the significant importance to work towards the development of professional skills for rehab specialists and the need to strengthen the organizational capabilities to deliver better and more effective care in the rehab domain" said Arman Voskerchyan, co-founder and the Chairman of the Board of HENAR foundation.
"Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship is the culmination of 2 years of hard work, dedication, and collaboration between diaspora and local professionals" said Armineh Babikian, the Founder and the President of "Therapists for Armenia".
The 10-month post-graduate fellowship will be taught in a hybrid format by experts from international institutions. The program includes emergency rehabilitation, acute rehabilitation, neurorehabilitation, burn and wound care, orthopedics, pain science and mental health, and other critical topics.
"The IRF was the solution we collectively dreamed of. A project seeking to address rehabilitation workforce capacity limitations identified during and after the 44 Day War. The first aim of the IRF is to build the clinical competency of physiatrists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists living and working in Armenia and Artsakh. The second aim is to create a strong and targeted educational leadership team who will drive the development of rehabilitation within Armenia and Artsakh's health systems" said Nicholas Tavoukjian, the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Armenian American Sports Medicine Coalition.