Geneva Rose White, M.D., is one of six anesthesia residents nationwide awarded a 2021-22 Society for Education in Anesthesia-Health Volunteers Overseas (SEA-HVO) Traveling Fellowship. White received the Ronald L. Katz Memorial Fellowship during the SEA’s annual meeting on Saturday, April 17.
The fellowship will allow White to serve at an HVO project site for a four-week rotation, working alongside her counterparts as a teacher and mentor to improve anesthesia care. According to the HVO website, the program challenges fellows to develop the skills necessary to “become leaders in global health, contributing to safe anesthesia care around the world now and for years to come.”
White’s interest in global health — specifically East African and Francophone health — stems from her experience as a Peace Corp volunteer in Tanzania from 2010-12.
“In my time as a Peace Corps volunteer I saw an urgent need for safe surgical and critical care. It's not acceptable for people to die young from traffic accidents, cerebral malaria, peri-partum hemorrhage or acute respiratory illnesses in the modern age,” said White, who hopes to serve at the HVO site in Rwanda. “That's a simple and true statement with a long and complicated implementation strategy. No one I've ever seen has gotten it perfectly right, but I'm looking for first steps to a sustainable solution.”
HVO and SEA launched the Traveling Fellowships in 2001 to encourage and support residents with an interest in global health. White is the first resident from U-M to earn the award.
“Dr. White is intelligent, curious, fully engaged in learning, generous, humble and probably the most caring person one could ever meet,” said Anesthesiology Residency Program Director Norah N. Naughton, M.D. “These attributes are channeled into a deliberate focus of Dr. White’s, which is to include in her career any opportunity to narrow access gaps to critical care in under-resourced countries. This includes a focus and attention to social injustices and racial inequality.”