Unsuccessful medical school applicants face a quandary. What to do next?
A popular option has been the master’s degree in public health. Students figured it was a way to spend a year doing something “health-related.” They could take off for medical school interviews, maybe write a paper or two. But the MPH is too easy a route. It is not enough. Here is what the MPH telegraphs: “I sat down for a year in easy to moderate difficulty classes and passed. I have a broad overview of public health.”
Hundreds of medical residents train in their specialties in the Los Angeles metropolitan area, but since the closure of the Martin Luther King Jr./Drew Medical Center, the spigot of fresh physicians who knew that area’s patients well stopped. The county-run hospital had been in Willowbrook, near Compton and Watts. The U.S. military sent their teams to the hospital for gunshot wound training. Still, it was shut down in 2007 due to too many episodes of poor patient care and chronic mismanagement.
The Big Sick, the film comedian Kumail Nanjiani delivered with his wife, Emily V. Gordon, did not win Best Original Screenplay at the 90th Academy Awards. That honor went to the searing and timely Get Out, and rightfully so, given the award is meant for stories that spring from the mind fully-formed, like the goddess Athena. The Big Sick is a more dramatic retelling of real life — Gordon’s battle with adult Still’s disease (also known as the scariest thing I saw in medical residency) — and Nanjiani’s awkward bonding with her parents — difficult enough without the object of your affection in a coma. But the film deserves recognition as an extremely rare portrait of life as the loved ones of the ailing.
Google is a company that likes to simplify tasks that used to be much bigger hassles, like reading maps, sharing documents, and finding old emails. Now, recognizing that health systems have not exactly jumped to help doctors with soul-crushing levels of daily data entry, Google wants to use speech recognition to help doctors get patient histories and plans into the electronic health record, or EHR.
Financial advisors and wealth managers are not just for rich people or for investing in llama futures and bitcoin loan sharks. Health professionals have complicated financial lives. Huge debts, job search expenses, salary negotiations, moving costs, nanny salaries, high rents and mortgages near the medical center, wedding expenses, and even unforeseen costs like car accidents can make investing and saving for retirement seem decades away, but a wise planner can be a great resource while a veterinarian or anesthesiologist concentrates on her practice. Good financial planners excel at calming their clients down, getting clients sorted out with insurance policies (that they actually need), and making savvy decisions for the future. How does one find that person who is a walking Wall Street Journal/therapist?
Hospital cafeteria food. Malignancy or benign-ness. Patient population seen in the third and fourth years. A medical school interview provides a fusillade of data points to consider, and an applicant can feel overwhelmed. But what criteria actually matter in the long run? Doctors can debate this question endlessly, but here, in no particular order, are the five criteria I believe to be essential considerations when making this all-important decision.
In this era of Dr. Google and rampant self-diagnosis, it’s becoming increasingly more confusing about where you should go when you’re injured or feeling sick — should you call your primary care doctor, visit an urgent care center or head straight to the ER? Often, the answer to that question isn’t always so black and white. Here are some tips to choose the right place to go, should you fall ill or be injured.
Hearpreneur features me in their article.
Reader’s Digest quotes me in their article.
The future of the doctor’s visit is the topic of innumerable conference lectures, policy forecasts, and venture capital meetings. Will we all go to community clinics under single-payer health care? Will doctors’ offices shut down as on-demand house calls prosper? Will IBM Watson figure out what that pink mole is?