SMI Program Collaborations Around the World

The map below depicts most of the cities throughout the world where Street Medicine Institute leaders have engaged in collaborative efforts toward the development and improvement of Street Medicine Programs.  To become a Program Member, click here.


THOUGHT-PROVOKING SPEECHES, USEFUL WORKSHOPS, NEW DATA and a KEY TO THE CITY:  ISMS XV full of opportunities to learn, collaborate and be inspired!

The International Street Medicine Symposium (ISMS) XV took place on October 21-23, 2019.  Pittsburgh Mercy’s Operation Safety Net and the Allegheny Health Network’s Center for Inclusion Health served as co-hosts for this 15th anniversary celebration of the global street medicine community as it returned to Pittsburgh, PA – site of the very first ISMS in 2005 and birthplace of the Street Medicine Institute (SMI).  A special pre-symposium Street Medicine 101 workshop offered on October 20 attracted a record number of attendees. 

Nearly 500 individuals attended the main event, representing 35 US states, and 70 cities located in 15 countries.  The three-day convention, which took place in the beautiful August Wilson African American Cultural Center, included keynote addresses by Dr. Jim Withers, SMI’s Founder, and William Peduto, Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh.  In a surprise moment for all, Mayor Peduto awarded Dr. Withers with a Key to the City for his work both locally through Operation Safety Net and internationally with SMI - an honor previously bestowed on only seven other persons. 

Speakers from around the world described their work, explained how to address a variety of clinical conditions in rough-sleeping settings, shared data and research findings, discussed how to build and fund a street medicine program and spoke about advocacy issues.  The energy in the August Wilson Center was palpable as attendees caught up with old friends, made new acquaintances and discussed their issues and concerns.  If you attended the event and are seeking CE credits, please be sure to complete the electronic evaluation forms emailed to all participants.  We extend our deep appreciation to all who attended making this another rewarding and uplifting international gathering of people focused on the care of the rough sleeping homeless person.

As ISMS XV closed, symposium committee chair, Dr. Liz Frye, announced that the host city for International Street Medicine Symposium XVI will be Toronto, Ontario, Canada on October 14 – 17, 2020.  Please watch our website for further news about next year!



Applicants who have completed Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, or Psychiatry residencies are invited to apply for the UPMC Mercy Street Medicine Fellowship.  This non-accredited fellowship is the first of its kind that focuses specifically on the delivery of health care in the street medicine setting – care delivered directly to the homeless camps and outdoor settings where rough sleepers live.  The fellowship is one year long starting July 2020; it's sponsored by the UPMC Mercy Department of Medicine in collaboration with Pittsburgh Mercy’s Operation Safety Net under the directorship of Dr. James Withers.  Fellows will develop both expertise in the practice of street medicine and the leadership skills to create and run their own street medicine programs.  An emphasis will be placed on the improved care of unsheltered homeless patients within a large inner-city teaching hospital.  A portion of the fellowship will involve travel to other cities within the global street medicine network to deepen their understanding of the best practices within this new field of medicine.

Please contact Dr. James Withers for further information.

James Withers, MD FACP

Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

Medical Director and Founder

Operation Safety Net and the Street Medicine Institute

249 South Ninth Street, Pittsburgh PA 15203

[email protected]