Vaccine Fever

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Happy Holidays!

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As we recorded this show, vaccine doses were beginning to spread across the world–well, across the rich countries of the world, anyway. The poorer countries were left with the WHO’s risky donation-funded program to distribute doses, causing concern that the program might just collapse because some countries we could mention decided not to contribute. We’re looking at you, United States of America and China.

We discuss ‘the right to be forgotten,’ a right which many in the USA and elsewhere might not meaningfully have. And Dave pretends to be a medical educator with a pop quiz on historical medical practices.

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Recess Rehash: Liver Bits, Cold Glocks, and Cancer of the Cancer

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[Last week’s show encountered some technical difficulties. So enjoy this rerun instead. We promise it’s cool.]

“He who laughs has not yet heard the bad news.”

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Co-hosts Nathen Spitz, Brandon Bacalzo, Mariam Mansour, and Greta Becker rehash their recent microbiology exam which they say kicked their butts, and how they deal with that nasty feeling. Dave discusses what Naegleria Fowleri means to him. Nathen and Mariam reminisce on their experiences with patient instructors and standardized patients.

And the gang practices giving bad news to their patients, using made-up diseases with names created by neural networks and assisted by their attending “Dr. Etler.”

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

AMA: Racism is a Public health Threat. SCP Co-hosts: Gosh, really?

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[This episode is sponsored by Panacea Financial, a Division of Sonabank, Member FDIC. Please support our sponsor by visiting https://panaceafinancial.com/]

In mid-November, the American Medical Association declared racism to be a public health threat. With that declaration, they adopted policies to acknowledge and recognize racism as detrimental to the health and well-being of all of America’s citizens, and to encourage the study of its effects and the creation of medical education curricula.

Great! But this week’s co-hosts, Nathen Spitz, Aline Sandouk, Sahaana Arumugam, and Ananya Munjal, have mixed feelings and hope that the AMA won’t be among the many institutions that have made similar declarations without taking real action.

But first, listener Malcolm wrote in to theshortcoats@gmail.com to ask how he might take advantage of his fortunate position as the holder of multiple acceptances to medical school in negotiating for financial aid. The co-hosts have definitely got some advice, based mostly upon our fantasies of being in the same position.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Recess Rehash: When Doctors Do Harm ft. Danielle Ofri, MD

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Hippocrates set a high bar.

A portrait of Dr. Danielle Ofri, Author of When We Do Harm: A Doctor Confronts Medical Error

[Hope your Thanksgiving was excellent, safe, and happy! We didn’t record anything this week, so here’s a rerun for you.]

Dr. Danielle Ofri–NYU professor of medicine, Bellevue Hospital internist, and author of great renown–joined us this time to talk about her new book, When We Do Harm: A Doctor Confronts Medical Error.  Examining medical errors is a something all good physicians do–sometimes on a stage in front of their colleagues but often surreptitiously. However, “mistakes were made” simply isn’t acceptable to most patients and lawyers. Meanwhile, the shame felt by practitioners who make mistakes is not only unhelpful but hinders their development and can contribute to burnout and depression.   Because of the consequences of shame are so dire, Dr. Ofri argues in her book that confronting mistakes in a humane, understanding, and open fashion is vital. 

Not many years ago, a headline grabbed her attention:  medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the United States.  How can that be? she wondered.  If people were dying at that rate, wouldn’t physicians have noticed this earlier?  Of course, it turns out that the story of medical error is much more complicated than that headline would lead one to believe, and set Dr. Ofri on the path to this latest book.  Join MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M4 Marisa Evers, M2 Jessica De Haan, and M4 Anne Nora for this discussion on the sources of error, the causes, and the ways to understand and learn from the inevitable.

We also discuss her and her colleagues’ experiences fighting COVID-19 in New York City and learning about the disease in real time.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Quality over Quantity: Clinical Experiences and Volunteering in COVID Times

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[This episode is sponsored by Panacea Financial, a Division of Sonabank, Member FDIC. Please support our sponsor by visiting https://panaceafinancial.com/]

The Short Coats have begun livestreaming their recordings in our Facebook group (most Fridays at noon central–join us and be a part of the show). Listeners Garrett and Isaac wrote in with questions about the clinical hours schools want from their applicants. How important is the number of hours, asked Garrett, and what changes in that number are schools making in COVID times? Lucky for you, gentlemen, MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M3 Emma Barr, and M1s Alex Belzer and AJ Chowdhury are on the show to suss it out for you. Plus, we provide some suggestions for alternatives if the usual activities just aren’t available to you. And livestream viewer Cierra asks how we think this year’s experiences will change medical education. Did we learn new things about how to deliver medical education? Are students less prepared than they would otherwise have been?

A couple shows ago, Dave indulged himself in a rant about Americans’ seeming inability to follow best practices for spreading COVID, basically saying those folks are wimps. But a recent editorial in MedPageToday.com makes him reconsider his delivery.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

What About Choosing the Cheapest Medical School?

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Given how much med school costs, isn’t it best to go for your cheapest option?

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[This episode is sponsored by Panacea Financial, a Division of Sonabank, Member FDIC. Please support our sponsor by visiting https://panaceafinancial.com/]

A listener we’re calling Victor Von Stateschool called us at 347-SHORT-CT to continue the recent spate of listener questions about choosing a medical school. Sure, prestige is something to consider…and yes, perhaps moving away from home to broaden your horizons is a good idea…but what about just picking your cheapest option even when you have the stats to go elsewhere? MD/PhD students Sahaana Arumugam and Miranda Schene, and M2s Ananya Munjal and Nathen Spitz try to put it all together. Pro tip: you can actually pit schools’ offers against each other to lower your tuition!

We also talk about the CCOM Art Show that Ananya and Sahaana are helping to put together, and which any med student from anywhere can submit work to.

And we try the Whisper Challenge again, because we’re not in the studio together to get germs on each other. Thanks, COVID…

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

To Leave or Not To Leave

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Should Jenna broaden her horizons by moving away for medical school?

[This episode is sponsored by Panacea Financial, a Division of Sonabank, Member FDIC. Please support our sponsor by visiting https://panaceafinancial.com/]

Listener Jenna got into Carver College of Medicine! But she’s worried–should she go to a new place to study medicine instead, or should she stay in comfy, cozy Iowa City where she’s been the last few years? Sit tight, Jenna, because M1 Lola Lozano (Texas), M1 Albert Pedroza (Nebraska), MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk (lots of places) and M1 Nicole Hines (Iowa) are here to look at the options with you!

Bun Bun writes in to complain about what they saw as our unfair treatment of Ivy League schools…although, if they’d listened verrrrry carefully, they’d see that’s not something we actually did.

Dave loses his cool about the pandemic complainers. Yes, it’s frustrating to have to stay home and avoid family over the holidays. But this is war.

And yet…he immediately proves the point by forgetting you can’t play the Whisper Challenge without a mask on. So the crew braces themselves against the disappointment–damn you, COVID!–and soldier on. Brave podcasters, all.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

The Power and Perils of Prestige in Med Ed

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Name recognition is great, but it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

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So Fancy!

Listener Morgan wrote in to ask what we thought about Ivy League schools with high name recognition, and whether it should be an important factor in her decision on a school to attend. MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk and M2s Greta Becker, Mariam Mansour, and Brandon Bacalzo discuss what they’ve learned about the value of big name schools and compare them to the education Morgan would get at the lesser-known schools.

We discuss the future of The Short Coat Podcast, namely our plans for livestreaming video of our recording sessions at The Short Coat Student Lounge. Join the SCP Lounge so you can be a part of the show, and we’d love to hear your ideas for such a venture.

And we visit the saddest place on the Internet to give the crew a chance to practice answering medical questions, including how riding the bus affects fertility and recent developments in the war on hydrogen peroxide.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Choosing Your Clinical Education: Community Hospital or Academic Medical Center?

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On this episode, M2s Nathen Spitz and Sahaana Arumugam, M3 Emma Barr, and MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk reminisce about simpler Halloween times, when the only thing to worry about was whether your costume was going to be on the sexy branch or the non-sexy branch of the decision tree. Emma gives us her thoughts on why it was a good idea to do her ‘core’ clinical clerkships (like Internal Medicine, Psych, and Peds) at community hospitals in Des Moines instead of at our academic medical center closer to home.

It’s time to vote in the US, and we reflect on why students absolutely must not ignore politics, and just how easy it is to get involved.

And, anticipating his friends’ need to one day be decision makers in medicine (and perhaps politicians?) Dave forces them to fight to the figurative death.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Md/PhD worries: Transitioning to the Lab

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Next semester Madi Wahlen will enter the PhD phase of her MD/PhD journey, and the though to that transition makes her kind of nervous. Fortunately, both she and Aline Sandouk were on this week’s episode, allowing space for Madi (and co-hosts Levi Endelman and AJ Chowdhury) to ask Aline questions about her experiences transitioning to the PhD phase. How did she handle the transition? How did she find a lab to work in? What kinds of specialties to MD/PhD students typically go into? Aline knows!

Reminder to US Listeners: Vote! Time is running out to get your absentee or mail-in vote counted. Head on over to http://ballotpedia.org to research candidates, find out how voting works in your state at http://vote.org, and know that Dave and The Short Coats love you for your engagement in the process of choosing our leaders.

And Dave gives the gang a fill-in-the-blanks quiz on weird research he found. What do mosquitos and people both hate enough to stop having sex? What do coked-up bees and people tend to do more of? And what preference do chickens and people have in common? Dave has the answers.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

An honest guide to the amazing and intense world of medical school.