"For me, the team room became a safe space filled with light, stories, laughter, and food. There, my residents helped me read CT scans, interpret CBCs, come up with the differential for bradycardia, and organize my oral presentations. My residents gifted me confidence, advice on the third year and specialty selection, ...

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A patient once told me, “I sit on the side of the road asking for change. People look right through me like I’m invisible. Food stamps aren’t enough. I can’t afford to exist and I want to die.” A man is dying of poverty -- this is an emergency, but not one I have been trained to fix. I am an emergency medicine physician; I care for people on the ...

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In the next few years, the biggest advancements in cancer care may occur at the smallest level, the level of individual molecules. By imaging individual molecules on cancer cells, malignancies can be detected when they are smaller and more easily treated.  Targeting individual molecules has also allowed groundbreaking new therapies with great precision, increasing the efficacy of treatment and minimizing side effects. This effort sounds like something out of “science fiction,” but ...

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When the pediatrician woke me at midnight to get a blood test from my three-month-old son, I knew things were serious. I should have known this already. Four weeks prior, my four-year-old daughter passed along a respiratory virus to my husband, me, and her brother. Her brother’s low oxygen level and inability to keep down milk brought him to the emergency room, where an oxygen mask was promptly fastened around his mouth, ...

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On March 13, 2020, almost exactly one year ago, hospitals in New York City shared an uneasy feeling that the enemy was all around us, growing in force and stealthily approaching, but still invisible. Then, over the next three weeks, the COVID tidal wave washed over us in full fury, as desperately ill patients flooded our emergency rooms. So as not to drown in that wave, Bellevue Hospital needed to ...

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"As we continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic causing spiking numbers of cases, the scientific and medical communities continue to search for effective treatments and preventive measures. We have clearly established the importance of wearing masks, physical distancing, and frequent handwashing. As of this article’s writing, there are over two hundred fifty articles ...

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As an aspiring surgeon, I at times contemplate whether being creative has any effect on my future career. On one hand, if you see surgery as an “art,” then possibly a creative personality is beneficial. On the other hand, surgery often seems objective and clear-cut, qualities often deemed uncreative. Perhaps even my goals of surgery and my interests in artistic creation are independent, noncommunicating personality features that are unrelated and ...

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Since last March, every day has been filled with news of COVID-19 statistics: surges, declines, the myriad of symptoms, and the staggering number of deaths. As a 23-year-old pre-med post-bacc student, I was suddenly moving home -- with my apartment’s meager supply of toilet paper and Clorox wipes -- to spend the unforeseeable future with my parents. Like many, the first few weeks were filled with uncertainty, worry, and a naïve ...

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In a February 2021 Facebook Live presentation sponsored by Seattle Children’s Hospital, Jill Escher, the president of the National Council on Severe Autism (NCSA), called for splitting the autism spectrum. In some individuals, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) presents as a serious developmental disability affecting communication, learning, motivation, and all aspects of daily living. These individuals require 24/7 level care. Others on the spectrum have mild differences in ...

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"Separated by less than a month (Boseman on August 28th and Ginsburg on September 18th) and both due to gastrointestinal cancers (Boseman had colon cancer and Ginsburg had pancreatic cancer), the situations of Ginsburg’s and Boseman’s deaths is emblematic of the racial disparity in American health outcomes. Boseman was African American/Black and ...

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I recently returned from Northwest Territories, where I’d been working as a physician for six months. Now, back in Nova Scotia, I’m reflecting on what it’s been like to have worked in areas of Canada with relatively few cases of COVID-19.

A large part of my work is hospital medicine. As the name implies, a hospitalist is a doctor who cares for patients admitted to the hospital. Often, we work ...

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Social media platforms lit up when sponsors of the U.S. Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) announced Step 1 score reporting will change from 3-digit numerical scores to pass/fail by January 1, 2022. First-year Harvard Medical School student LaShyra Nolen tweeted, “this could reinforce the hierarchy among med schools,” arguing the score change could encourage residency admission directors to favor applicants from prestigious medical ...

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Just as providers have reimagined their clinical and business models in light of the pandemic, there is an opportunity to reimagine their relationship with health plans. Particularly in the context of evolving value-based contracts, there are a variety of “asks” that are likely to find receptive health plans. Three issues that are particularly important to health plans are administrative efficiency, quality measures, and overall cost of care. Each one creates ...

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I was somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, heading to Ukraine “to make a difference,” or so I hoped. I was leading a medical mission to this beautiful yet poor and war-torn country. I was watching the movie First Man about the landing of Apollo 11 on the moon that epic day in July 1969. I was not quite 14 years of age at that time, but I vividly remember the ...

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“To become successful, you need to be excellent and likable,” said a local Black physician giving advice to young underrepresented students facing the usual challenges of medical school. “Black excellence is the only way forward. The system and the institutions are racist, but we just need to work extra hard. If we do, we will get what we deserve,” said another prominent African-American doctor trying to inspire graduating Black physicians. Both of ...

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"When it comes to using telehealth to treat patients out of state, most physicians are mindful about licensure issues. But some are not aware that if you don’t have a license to practice medicine in a given state, it isn’t just malpractice: It’s a criminal offense. Licensing restrictions have been eased to facilitate ...

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The “model minority” is a term that denotes Asians in the U.S.  East Asians, in particular, have been the target of xenophobic hate crimes and microaggressions since the outset of COVID-19. When a former presidential administration used hate and fear to garner power, it does not surprise me, that Sinophobia runs rampant during these times. The NYPD reported a 1,900 percent increase in Asian-American hate crimes in 2020. As an ...

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“Last question,” the woman from the insurance company said. Good, I thought; I was eager to get back to seeing patients. “How long have you been taking care of Sarah?” “I’m not sure,” I replied, “How old is she?” “She’s 34.” “Then I have been taking care of her for 35 years.” “Doctor, I’m not sure you heard me correctly; she is only 34.” “I heard you perfectly,” I retorted, “She has been my patient for 35 ...

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In her hospital bed, she sat there confused as to what was buzzing around her. Rita was 96 years old and in the throes of dementia and agitation. As her physician assigned to her that week, I remember walking into her room and noticed her elderly husband brushing her hair w an unsteady hand and feeding her chocolates. “My sweetie loves chocolates,” he states. Rita, agitated, grabs his arm and throws it ...

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Quick, think of someone unrelated to you who has had a major impact on your life. I’d wager the vast majority of us pictured a face or two, and that nearly all (I hope) represented a positive influence. In my thirty-plus-year career in medicine, I’ve been blessed with several, and their impact on my life and career is truly inestimable. As a smart kid who went to medical school because it’s ...

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