Category Archives: Short Coat Podcast

All episodes of the Short Coat Podcast.

Refusing to Treat: A Collision of Medicine and Conscience

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Do doctors need protection from having to provide treatments they don’t believe in?

genetic photoDuring Human Rights Week at the Carver College of Medicine, we heard some hard truths from national news commentator, human rights activist, and podcaster Angela Rye. In her speech to the College of Medicine, she clued white people in on what black Americans face every day in 2017.  She also pointed out that Martin Luther King, Jr’s “I Have a Dream” speech was just the beginning of his activism.  Meanwhile,  Mackenzie Walhof, Joyce Wahb, Claire Casteneda, and Gabe Conley discuss the department of Health and Human Services announcement that it would be forming a department to protect doctors from having their religious rights infringed. Do doctors need protection so they can refuse to treat as a matter of conscience?  Or do they self-select what they do and don’t do by where they practice and what they specialize in?

And with the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show in the history books, Dave delivers a pop quiz to see if his co-hosts can identify real or fake health-adjacent gadgets.

This Week in Medical News

The march of genetic medicine continues, as the NIH has given the green light to using CRISPR to modify cancer patients’ T-cells ex vivo, hoping to turn them into killers of myeloma, sarcoma, and melanoma.  And Walmart is going to do its part in the fight against opioid addiction by including in prescriptions a substance that destroys leftover opioids when patients are done with them, for free.

We Want to Hear From You

Are you ready to patent Dave’s inventions?  Do you think docs need to be protected by the government from their patients’ needs? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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Taking Advice is Hard To Do

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Giving advice is easy.  Taking it?  Not so much.

selfie photo
Photo by Maurits Verbiest

Listener Arman calls back to thank us for some good advice we gave him on continuing his hobbies and interests outside medical school!  Nevertheless, he notes how difficult it often is to take advice, even when we want it, and wonders if we know why?  Of course we do, and Levi Endelman, Tony Rosenberg, Mark Moubarek, and Rob Humble are willing to advise him.  And Samuel paints doctors with a broad brush when he writes to tell us his worries about the kinds of people who go to medical school and the sorts of things they do when they get those precious letters after their names and the prestige to go with them.

This Week in Medical News

The WHO and others are ready to add ‘gaming disorder‘ to the International Classification of Diseases, to the dismay of many experts (and little ol’ us).  And researchers in India are taking a 2014 internet hoax to its logical conclusion and trying to decide if ‘selfitis‘ (the obsessive taking of selfies) is a real concern, as well as how people use them to prop themselves up.

We Want to Hear From You

Wanna show us your best duck-lips selfie?  Need some advice that you won’t take? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  Do all three!

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Man Flu and Other Struggles

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As the semester wrapped up, Dave didn’t feel it was necessary to ponder great questions or debate contentious issues, so this week’s show is pretty newsy…and there’s never a shortage of things to talk about there.  Of course, Dave had to make up a stupid game for Erik Kneller, Erick Schnieders, Irisa Mahaparn, and Kaci McCleary to play, in which they pimp each other on non-medical topics.

This Week in Medical News

Ever heard of bagel-related hand injuries?  Avocados can also wreak havoc on unwary knife-wielders, which is British chain Marks & Spencer excuse for offering UK citizens seedless avocados.  Significant progress has also been made in the fight against tropical illnesses as a result of the 2012 London Declaration on Neglected Tropical Diseases.  We discuss the idea that moving to Canada may solve American MDs’ paperwork woes, even if the countries’ respective healthcare systems each have their benefits and drawbacks.  A UK surgeon decides it’s cool AF to carve his initials in his patients’ livers, although the patients themselves disagree.  And man flu is real.  Of course it is.

We Want to Hear From You

Do you have any suggestions for future show topics? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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Night Float: Choosing a Specialty

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Choosing a Speciality

firefighter costume photo
Photo by Ryan Dickey

From an early age people are asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Whether they knew it all along or discovered their career path along the way, medical students have made a commitment to the answer, “I want to be a doctor.” As soon as that answer is given, however, an equally challenging question awaits. “What kind of doctor do you want to be?”

In the second episode of Night Float, Dr. Tony Chung (R1: Ophthalmology), Dr. Travis Snyders (R2: Internal Medicine), and Lisa Wehr (M4) discuss the process of choosing a specialty. Some medical students will have an ‘aha’ moment, while many others will face a timeline and search more for a ‘tipping point’ that favors a particular choice. The resident physicians share their own experiences with decision making and encourage students to explore their options through making early connections, asking questions, gaining experiences, and not being discouraged or dissuaded even when the process involves navigating unsolicited advice or looping back around.

Helpful links

AAMC Careers in Medicine – Careers in medicine is a resource designed to assist medical students in choosing a specialty and navigating the residency match process in a strategic way.

We Want to Hear From You

How are you going about making your choice of specialty? What questions do you have about specialty choice? In general, what would you like to hear from residents about their medical school or residency experiences? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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Preparing for Residency Interviews

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Preparing for Residency Interviews

interviews photo
Photo by Matt From London

Welcome to Night Float! In this series  of special episodes, resident physicians take a break from the demands of their days (and nights) to offer information, guidance, and support to medical students and to share their residency experiences. Fourth year medical students are currently in the heart of residency interview season, and they are doing all they can to secure a position through the residency match process. In the first episode of Night Float, Dr. Desiré Christensen (R2: Psychiatry) and Dr. Matt Maves (R1: Pediatrics) discuss their interview experiences and offer suggestions about how to prepare.

Helpful links

AAMC Careers in Medicine – Careers in medicine is a resource designed to assist medical students in choosing a specialty and navigating the residency match process in a strategic way.

Doximity – Doximity is a network of physicians and medical students.

FREIDA – FREIDA is the AMA Residency & Fellowship Database.

We Want to Hear From You

What are your residency interview stories? What suggestions do you have for medical students preparing to match? Medical students, what questions do you have about the residency application process?

Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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Bropocalypse 2017

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The national #MeToo conversation continues

creepy man photoDave found himself hosting with another group of women, so what better time to talk about #MeToo and the powerful people being taken down by their sexual harassment and abuse of their less-powerful victims?  Erin Pazaski, Hillary O’Brien, Laura Quast, and Liza Mann weigh in on why this seems to have staying power in the news cycle, and why it seems to destroy some powerful men and not others.  Plus, since this is a group of friends who, through med school, have come to know each other well, Dave challenges each to answer questions as their friends would.

This Week in Medical News

Speaking of creepy, The University of Miami has a problem on its hands with a medical student who’s been posting other students’ social media pics of their car selfies and beach photos on websites where other folks are excited by such things.  A New Hampshire doc loses her license after refusing to use an EHR because she’d rather practice ‘medical art’ (and not properly tracking her prescribing practices).  And more medical schools want to hear from premeds what they think about the national debate on the ACA and the individual insurance mandate.

We Want to Hear From You

Your thoughts and comments are important to us!  Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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More Surgery for Better Global Health: Dr. Mark Shrime

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Is surgery too expensive for global health?

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Is surgery ‘too expensive’ for global health?

Mark Shrime is an otolaryngologist (and American Ninja Warrior competitor) who may just be on the leading edge of change in the way global health sees surgery.  In this conversation with Tony Mai, Amanda Manorot, Brian Wall, and Hadeal Ayoub, Dr. Shrime argues that the way surgery is used in international development to date–surgeons fly in for two weeks, do their thing, and fly back out–doesn’t do much to allow their host countries to develop their own surgery skills.  For his part, he’s managed to arrange his work at Harvard to allow him two months abroad helping to strengthen health systems in countries like Congo, Haiti, Cameroon, and Madagascar.

The problem is, policy-makers see surgery as ‘too expensive,’ disregarding it as a tool for global health intervention.  Ebola and Zika therefore get all the attention.  But analysis of the cost-effectiveness of surgery as a tool in global health efforts belies this view, and shows the burden of surgical diseases may be as high as a third of the global total.  Fortunately, Dr. Shrime has good advice for future surgeons who face a system that embraces Relative Value Units as a measure of physician performance, and yet want to pursue work outside their hospitals to effect global healthcare change.

We Want to Hear From You

What are your thoughts on the effort to elevate surgery as a global health intervention? Any thoughts on who we should interview next? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com to share your ideas.

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Thanksgiving surprise: they didn’t vomit

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Happy Thanksgiving to Short Coats Everywhere!

Dave loves all Short Coats–he’s like a benevolent god, except without any godly powers or omniscience (as well as a slightly lower sense of self-importance) but with plenty of love. However, he does like to put people in iffy situations, which is why he and his wife Christine fired up the Short Coat Test Kitchen to create Golden Thanksgiving Perfection Salad for the co-hosts.  Perfection not included, but Gabe Conley, Claire Casteneda, and noobs Erik Kneller and Nick Evans don’t hate it.  While they ‘enjoy’ that, listener Rachel messaged us on Facebook to suggest we discuss the latest news in chronic traumatic encephalopathy research, in which former NFL player Fred McNeill is the first to have had a PET scan before his death, which means there is now evidence that PET scans can be used as a diagnostic tool for CTE.  Speaking of research, Dave pops a quiz from tweets on #weirdresearch.

This Week in Medical News

A 7-year-old boy has had 80% of his skin replaced with close to 1 square meter of skin genetically engineered from his own cells…and he’s doing great!  And another genetic engineering first will soon bear fruit (or fail) for a man who is the first to have had his DNA engineered from within as a treatment for Hunter syndrome.

We Want to Hear From You

How was your break?  Did you miss school?  Do you have things for us to talk about? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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The Business of Medicine

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Should medical students learn more about the business of medicine?

Medical school definitely hasn’t made a priority of teaching about how medicine works as a business.  MDs who get involved in that side of healthcare typically learn on the job. But recent caller Ryan is interested in that topic, and wanted to hear from us about what CCOM students are learning about it.

A couple years ago, M4 Joe Nellis and some other students founded the Healthcare Management and Delivery Science Distinction Track.  One reason was that their families had questions they couldn’t answer about the topic.  They also knew that decisions about healthcare delivery and outcomes evaluation were being made without MDs having a clear idea (or even input on) how and why.  Joe and M2s Philip Huang and Amanda Manarot got together with Dave to talk about what they’ve learning on issues like teamwork, e-health, data and decision-making. And while the healthcare leaders of tomorrow still have to learn much of the biz after they leave medical school, having a fuller grasp of the forces that affect how medicine is practiced is key, especially as the private practice of medicine gives way to employment in hospitals and other organizations.

This Week in Medical News

Dave took issue with this article which posits that doctors’ salaries are a problem for healthcare costs, despite the fact that according to the author’s own figures, that amount makes up about 1/32 of the cost of healthcare per US household.

We Want to Hear From You

Do you want to learn about this stuff?  Or are you content to worry only about taking care of patients? Tell us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.

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“I’ve Got Some Bad News”

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Delivering bad news is an art.

uh oh photo
Photo by Powerhouse Museum Collection

When  many people think about becoming a physician, they focus on the positive side of the practice of medicine. Things like diagnosing and successfully treating patients, forming therapeutic relationships, and even income and prestige get most attention.  But there is one thing that receives less attention: sometimes, doctors deliver very bad news to their patients.  Learning how to do that gracefully in a way that supports patients rather than devastating them is an important skill.  And in a team-based environment, it can be tricky. So, M3 Mark Moubarek shows M1s Joyce Wahba, Gabe Conley, and new co-host Claire Casteneda the ropes.  Of course, Dave devises an educational exercise to “help.”

This Week in Medical News

In other bad news, it’s not getting any easier to get into medical school…in fact, it’s getting harder.  In the last decade, applications have doubled for top 10 schools focusing on primary care, and others (like Iowa) have increased 1.5 times.  Time to be interesting, applicants!

We Want to Hear From You

Are you doing something more interesting than checking off the boxes on your medical school application? We definitely want to know about it.  Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime, visit our Facebook group, or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  If you’re doing something really interesting, maybe we’ll interview you on the show!

Continue reading “I’ve Got Some Bad News”