Author: Ryan Denu

Ryan Denu Ryan Denu (8 Posts)

Contributing Writer

University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health


Ryan is a Class of 2019 MD/PhD student at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. He graduated in May 2012 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a BS in molecular biology. He enjoys thinking and writing about health care policy and bioethics, and is also an avid tennis player, instructor, coach, umpire, and fan.




A Comprehensive Strategy to Increase Organ Donation

Over 120,000 adults and children are waiting for an organ in the United States, and another patient needing an organ is added to the transplant list every ten minutes. On average, about 20 Americans die every day from the lack of available organs for transplant. Specific to kidney transplant, it has been estimated that by 2015, over 700,000 Americans will have end stage renal disease and over 26 million will have some form of chronic kidney disease.

Gun Safety: A Florida Invasion on the Doctor-Patient Relationship

You’re working at a pediatric primary care clinic and enter the room of a five-year-old boy and his mother for a routine physical. You ask about the child’s general health the past year, his diet, exercise, among other things. Then you start to ask questions relating to the patient’s safety, such as his use of seat belts and helmets, and you start to ask about guns in the home. But then, alarms start to go off …

Medicare SGR Repeal and What It Means for Our Future

Here’s the problem: Medicare’s physician payment formula has not been working. Since 1992, Medicare has reimbursed physicians on a fee-for-service basis. In 1997, Congress implemented the sustainable growth rate (SGR) to control Medicare spending and make sure that growth in physician reimbursement does not exceed growth in the gross domestic product (GDP). This is problematic because the cost of medical care in the United States has increased faster than its GDP. In fact, health care …

Women, Autoimmune Diseases and the Demographic Transition

The incidence of autoimmune diseases has tripled in the past few decades, and they cost the United States more than $100 billion each year. Additionally, an autoimmune disease typically lasts for the person’s lifetime, and there are no known cures, which further put a major financial burden on the health care system. Current estimates show that 5-8% of people have autoimmune diseases worldwide, and it is estimated that over 23 million Americans suffer from them. …

Save NIH Funding!

Just this past month, the House of Representatives passed a new budget bill that would make permanent the sequestration cuts. Being a physician-scientist in training, one of my biggest concerns is the proposed 8.4% cut to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding of biomedical research. There are also cuts proposed to the National Science Foundation. Every single time a doctor evaluates a patient or prescribes a therapy for a serious illness, federally funded biomedical research plays …

Organ Donation: To Opt In Or Opt Out

Organ shortage is a serious problem in the United States. About 20,000 organ transplants occur every year in the U.S., and 116,689 Americans are currently on a waiting list for an organ, with kidneys being the most needed. The obesity epidemic is contributing to the shortage; a quarter of prospective donors are too obese to donate their kidneys. People typically wait 3-5 years for an organ, and thousands die every year (an average of 18 …

A Whole New Breed of Doctors: Changes in Medical School Admissions

The body of students being admitted to medical school has changed drastically in recent years as institutions are trying harder to find students who are well-rounded. As a result, the coming years will witness the birth of a whole new breed of doctors. The question I will address is what this change will mean for the practice of medicine. One major change seen in students admitted to medical school is their undergraduate course of study. …

Ryan Denu Ryan Denu (8 Posts)

Contributing Writer

University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health


Ryan is a Class of 2019 MD/PhD student at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. He graduated in May 2012 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a BS in molecular biology. He enjoys thinking and writing about health care policy and bioethics, and is also an avid tennis player, instructor, coach, umpire, and fan.