“Hey, doc,” our new patient grinned at me without teeth. He wears his teeth to eat peanuts, he explained, but today was hankering for a ham sandwich, so left the teeth at home. Here in the clinic straight from the logging job that he had worked for the past fifty years, he wore steel-toed boots, hands covered in dirt. Clarifying that I was a medical student, I asked ...

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Karen smiled nervously, her swollen belly peeking out from under her stretched silver tank top. Six months pregnant with her first child, the eighteen-year-old had come to the WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) office for help with getting enough to eat. As a medical student with a background in nutrition advocacy and a future in pediatrics, I had asked to observe the WIC enrollment process.

Karen and ...

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