For years, medical schools only accepted those who scored highest on the MCATs or received top grades.

But, in an era where working with others is becoming more essential to patient care, whether future doctors can function as a member of a team is becoming increasingly important.

To that end, Maggie Mahar asks whether those who score the highest grades really are best suited to become doctors. ...

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As an alum of Boston University Medical School, and having trained at Boston Medical Center, this is truly sad and disturbing news.

The so-called "Craigslist Killer," who was the target of a national manhunt, is apparently a 22-year old medical student at Boston University:

Boston police tonight arrested Philip Markoff, a 22-year-old Boston University medical student, in the murder of 26-year-old Julissa Brisman at the Copley Marriott last week ...

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Nothing makes a new medical student more nervous than answering a series of medical questions from their attending, known as pimping.

There is a definite art to the tactic. Ask too many questions based in triviality, it can be interpreted as intimidating. However, used correctly, it can be a valuable learning tool.

Over at orthopedic blog Them Bones, we have a detailed history of medical pimping ...

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How dramatic.

But it's also true. Stateside, we're already dealing with the repercussions of restricting residents' work to 80 hours per week or less.

The UK is going several steps further, but restricting all doctors to no more than 48-hours of work a week.

First off, there are no studies that suggest restricting work-hours improves patient care. Whatever patient safety gains are made ...

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The purging of drug companies from continuing medical education courses continues.

Psychiatrist Daniel Carlat points to what's happening at the University of Wisconsin, where company-funded CME lectures conveniently left out side effects of the medications that were mentioned.

For instance, in a Pfizer-sponsored course on smoking cessation, not one of Pfizer-marketed Chantix's many side effects were mentioned.

CME is a big money industry, and in the ...

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Second Life is a "virtual" world where users act and communicate using avatars.

A medical school in the UK is experimenting with the platform, where "students [via their avatars] enter a patient's room and their work begins. Because their assignment takes place in a respiratory ward, they can access recordings of real-life patients' breathing to help with their diagnoses. And if students decide that X-rays are needed, they ...

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The following is reader take by Half MD.

The third Thursday of March each year is Match Day for fourth-year medical students. There are many smiles and frowns made on this day when soon-to-be doctors discover where they will obtain their first job to continue their medical training. While Match Day is the most famous day of the week, Monday and Tuesday are the ...

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Dissecting a human body is messy, smelly, and expensive.

In fact, more medical schools are resorting to so-called "virtual" gross anatomy, using sophisticated imaging and computer programs.

This is a mistake, says psychiatry resident Christine Montross, in a NY Times op-ed. And she has a point.

"Someday, [doctors] need to keep their cool when a baby is lodged wrong in a mother's birth ...

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I wrote previously that pharmaceutical industry influence should be removed from physician continuing medical education courses.

The American Psychiatric Association is taking that recommendation to heart, announcing that it will end industry-sponsored seminars at its annual meeting.

Good for them.

But, I'd be interested to see how many of these professional organizations can survive the funding cut. For instance, the APA stands to lose ...

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Should a convicted murderer ever be allowed to become a doctor?

Lawrence Altman writes about the strange situation in the NY Times, where, after a convicted murderer was expelled from Sweden's most prestigious medical school, was admitted to a second medical school.

Dr. Altman also points to another case, where a medical student, convicted of rape, was only expelled after exhaustive court action.

What's going on ...

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