Teaching and Research in Parasitology and Tropical Medicine in Medical Schools of the United States: A Survey and a Fellowship Program

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  • School of Medicine, Louisiana State University, New Orleans 12, La.


The trend in the teaching of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine in the medical schools of the continental United States is described from the results of surveys made in 1941, 1945 and 1954. The 1954 survey was made at the request of the Parasitology and Tropical Medicine Study Section of the National Institutes of Health. Since World War II there has been only a slight decline in the average number of hours devoted to Parasitology, but Tropical Medicine as a distinct subject has nearly disappeared from the medical curriculum. The 1954 survey was followed by a questionnaire sent to all persons listed as teachers of Parasitology in the medical schools, in order to determine their qualifications and experience, and their interest in obtaining a fellowship to gain practical experience in the American Tropics. Sixty-four per cent of the 120 persons who replied expressed an interest in such a fellowship.

The China Medical Board of New York has made a grant to Louisiana State University to conduct a program of fellowships for a two year period. The first group of six fellows was assigned to Costa Rica for the months of July and August 1955. It is planned to offer four similar fellowship periods each year. Teachers of Tropical Medicine who are not included among the teachers of parasitology will be included in the program.