International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine


Faculty - Student International Exchange Committee

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Welcome to the Website of  "Operation Global Goniometry", an educational and humanitarian outreach initiative of the ISPRM

“Alone We Can Do So Little, Together So Much”   ----Helen Keller



Background Information

Inspired by the legacy of  the legendary disability activist, humanitarian and educator, Helen Keller, the “ISPRM International Student-Faculty Exchange Program”, code-named, "Operation Global Goniometry",  has significantly touched the personal and educational lives of rehabilitation physicians, students and people with disabilities the world over.

The program was inaugurated in November of 2002, when  President John Melvin (USA) and President-elect Haim Ring (Israel) determined the vital importance of promoting international education. With the encouragement of the ISPRM Board, a new committee was born. 

Since spreading rehabilitation expertise internationally in the name of humanitarian service, has always been recognized as a priority of the ISPRM, and its predecessors IRMA and IFPMR, the establishment of this program  represented a logical continuation of ISPRM's mission and vision to promote global humanitarianism through rehabilitation.  

Physiatrists Mark A. Young (USA), Peter Disler (Australia) and Luigi Tessio (Italy) were invited in 2003 to lead  the committee and to spearhead the international effort. In the years that the group has been in existence, many impressive global achievements centered on promoting international educational and academic opportunities in rehabilitation have unfolded. With the occurrence of several devastating natural disasters in 2005 such as the Asian Tsunami, the earthquakes in Pakistan and Turkey and the Hurricanes in the USA, the committee has dedicated itself to helping persons with disabilities whose lives have been impacted by these cataclysmic  events through humanitarian service and rehabilitation education. Current ISPRM President Linamara Batistella (Brazil) has been a key motivating force in the programs worldwide public service initiatives. Dr. Mark A. Young (Baltimore, Maryland, USA) currently serves as chairman of the committee.

The Committee serves as a central clearing house for unique educational and learning  opportunities in Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine, across all continents. To track the individual accomplishments and endeavors of the committee, a special photo album has been established on this web site ( All ISPRM members are encouraged to submit photographs focused on their outreach efforts in PR&M education.

Operation Global Goniometry draws inspiration and encouragement from a diverse group of global luminaries in the field of PM&R, including Professor Herman Flax who devoted many years of his career to outstanding leadership within IRMA. Dr. Flax has earned the title of  International Physiatric "Ambassador" for his travels throughout the world in the name of rehabilitation education. He has accomplished a lifetime of outstanding and unique contributions to the care of people with disabilities. Another international  academic authority in Rehabilitation education is Professor Mathew Lee, Chairman and Professor of the New York University Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation. Dr. Lee's lifelong love of international physiatric education has motivated many people and has led to the development of "Rusk Without Walls", an organization committed to international rehabilitation education. There have been many others who have historically shaped the development of ISPRM's worldwide educational agenda including many of the current senior members of ISPRM.

          The Primary Functions and Responsibilities of the Committee:

  • To serve as a central clearing house for international learning & humanitarian opportunities in rehabilitation

  • To facilitate placement of medical students, residents, faculty physicians and allied rehabilitation professionals in global voluntary didactic rotations as well as rehabilitation public service projects

  • To share information about global PRM educational & humanitarian opportunities with the membership of the organization

  • To track the outcomes, progress and successes of the committee's educational  and community outreach initiatives

  • To interface and network with other rehabilitation educational organizations in pursuit of International Education and Scholarship in the field

  • To provide global educational opportunities in rehabilitation for the service of humanity

The web pages that follow provide a pictorial, virtual photo album documenting the committees activity 

Dr. Mark A. Young (USA), Chair of ISPRM Exchange Committee (foreground) lecturing residents, medical students, therapists  and attending staff at the University of Vilnius in Lithuania.



Site Designed and Maintained By: Michael Young Techniworks 2006