Initially, after completing my master’s degree, I felt a bit lost. Being very busy, juggling different roles, focusing on areas of interest to the exclusion of other areas of life has long been my comfort zone. The stillness of having completed an intensive project while working full time would have been challenging enough. But in the middle of a pandemic, I found myself wandering around my house, confined, without a ...

Read more...

Scarcity has, in many ways, defined the COVID-19 experience in the U.S., from shortages in personal protective equipment to ICU ventilators and hospital capacity, to COVID test kits, to drugs like Remdesivir in hard-hit states. These shortages have added impetus and new dimensions to existing conversations around health care supply chains, some of which had ...

Read more...

"My mom was beyond vulnerable to the virus. May of 2020 marked two years since she’d become a nursing home resident—receiving care for several chronic illnesses. She died of failure to thrive due to Coronavirus 2019 on June 1, 2020, at the age of 75. As her oldest child, her health care proxy, and a health care writer for more than 15 years, I knew that a positive result ...

Read more...

My first—and last—clinical rotation was at a newly built nursing home attached to a community hospital near school. I didn’t have a car on campus, and hitched rides from classmates who were typically commuters with night jobs.

They were a tougher, more sophisticated breed of young women than I was used to in my hometown. They smoked, but their voices still seemed naturally lower-pitched than mine. They never squeaked ...

Read more...

COVID-19, first diagnosed in China in December 2019, has since spread across the world and affected over 37 million individuals. While most people infected with COVID-19 experience mild to moderate illness and recovery without the need for hospitalization or medical intervention, some require intensive care for weeks to months. Despite an estimated 28 million individuals who have “recovered” from COVID-19, there is increasing evidence of persistent symptoms and even organ ...

Read more...

Since the small cluster of cases broke out in Wuhan, China nine months ago, the world has profoundly changed. With each passing moment, there seems to be a new COVID-19 milestone. 1 million deaths worldwide. 215,000 deaths in the United States. A White House outbreak. Rather than tell you reassuring lies or downplay the virus, I am going to tell you inconvenient truths. But if ...

Read more...

COVID-19, first identified in December 2019 and declared a global pandemic in March 2020, has taken a toll on everyone around the world. After months of varying levels of lockdown and quarantine, people are developing pandemic fatigue, and craving human contact and normalcy again. This, coupled with the reopening of the nation, businesses reopening, and schools back in session, many people are relying on COVID-19 testing to say they are ...

Read more...

Among the questions I’m asked most often as host of the podcast Coronavirus: The Truth are: “How have other nations effectively contained the pandemic?” and “Why can’t the United States copy their success?” For months, health experts have answered these questions by pointing to a combination of science and strategy. Other nations, they say, test more frequently, impose tighter social restrictions and boast ...

Read more...

A 4-day-old term, formula-fed male infant with an uncomplicated prenatal course and no ABO set up or other identified cause of excessive jaundice was admitted to the hospital for phototherapy treatment of hyperbilirubinemia with a peak bilirubin of 19.5. He had an uneventful hospital course and was discharged on day 6 of life.  On day 8 of life, his mother called concerned that he was fussy and had a black ...

Read more...

Despite the pervasiveness of mental illness and burnout among medical providers, only in the past decade have providers begun to acknowledge and explore the psychological distress so many struggle with. As a resident, I have observed how COVID-19 has further complicated this situation by dramatically increasing stress while limiting our capacity to deal with that stress. This dangerous combination is setting us up for a surge in already sky-high burnout ...

Read more...

"Government officials, regardless of political affiliation, should seek sound medical advice before communicating with their constituents. Appropriate public health information should be shared so that constituents are not harmed by following misinformed medical information. Government officials, news media, and social media platforms should account for the health information they spread. We must combat misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic so that we ...

Read more...

During the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists, physicians, and public health epidemiologists have come together, and there has been a surge in research worldwide. Basic science research has been leading the way in developing vaccines and genome sequencing the SARS-CoV-2 strains. The industry has ramped up research on developing antibody tests and viral tests to keep up with the increased need for COVID-19 testing. Clinical research and trials have drastically increased to ...

Read more...

Amidst the height of the COVID pandemic in New York City, I turned to Netflix to find morsels of yesterday, which seemed so distant then. During this time, I discovered Mindy Kaling’s creation, Never Have I Ever. The show tries to tell the story of a protagonist who is struggling to find compassion for her identity as a South Asian girl living in California after the tragic loss of her ...

Read more...

I evaluated the patient in one of our designated exam rooms for persons under investigation (PUIs) for COVID-19, fully doffed in personal protective equipment (PPE): an uncomfortable, resonant face shield over my surgical mask, looking like Big Bird in a bright yellow gown. It was a false alarm. But like many other clinic visits these days, we ended up talking about COVID-19. “I can’t wait until we have a COVID vaccine ...

Read more...

That first day of mid-March in the call center that was later to become the headquarters of our student lead COVID-19 hotline, the disorganization and confusion were almost palpable. I remember the other fourth-year student at the time, Eda, trying to manage the newly arriving group of student volunteers while simultaneously answering a phone line that was ringing off the hook. I remember the blur of motion as three nurses ...

Read more...

"There is no single culprit responsible for this shift in medical education. However, two, in particular, should be noted. The first is the culture of defensive medicine, or more bluntly, CYA (cover-your-ass) medicine. This culture has been insidiously infusing itself within the modern health care system for decades. The fear of being sued for malpractice is ever-present. Undoubtedly, this has led ...

Read more...

When the president of the United States contracts a dangerous disease, the story is big news. When the same disease has taken the lives of 200,000 people and the same president has been under fire for grossly mishandling the response, the tale takes on a much bigger, almost biblical significance. Americans have been on tenterhooks since the news broke that Donald Trump tested positive for COVID-19, and emotion and speculation ...

Read more...

New York City has the largest public school system in the country. More than a million students, and tens of thousands of teachers, administrators, and support staff.  If you read the papers, the biggest issue is how to organize teaching. The debate is over on-line learning versus in-person learning and everything in between.  But, as the city works to reopen schools, last-minute changes and concerns for inadequate infection prevention measures ...

Read more...

December 15, 2018. My coworker is moving to California. She’s a statistician for a group of pulmonary and critical care physicians at our New York City hospital, and I’m a statistician who’s trying not to do too many things wrong, only three months into my first job out of school. “I think you’d be good with this research team,” she tells me. “There’s some really interesting studies on lung diseases.” I ...

Read more...

It wasn’t very long into medical school when I realized that the role of a physician feels just like that—a role. As a former high school thespian, I recall my Step 2 CS exam feeling a lot like a series of auditions—convincing twelve standardized patients that I was a competent physician with an abundance of clinical knowledge and the ability to remain cool under pressure during the notorious “curveball” questions ...

Read more...

50 Pages

Most Popular

✓ Join 150,000+ subscribers
✓ Get KevinMD's most popular stories