Yet, I am worried that these stories of heroism are harming the very people they celebrate. By creating an ideal “health care worker” as an endlessly altruistic individual, it stigmatizes the medical workers who refuse to take on these risks — even though there are many legitimate reasons not to. I’ve talked to doctors in China who have watched their friends and colleagues die during the SARS epidemic, who have watched the government break its promises to support their families after their death, and who, as a result, are no longer willing to volunteer on the frontlines. I’ve watched videos of nurses in the U.S. crying after they were forced to quit their jobs because hospitals are not providing them with the personal protective equipment (PPE) necessary to keep them safe. Many of them said that they were afraid of getting infected and spreading the disease to their high-risk family members. Who can say these are not real concerns? Who can call these physicians and nurses selfish and irresponsible?
Sameera was an Iraqi refugee who had recently arrived from Tijuana, Mexico. She fled violence from what seemed like every corner of the globe, starting with Iraq, then to Yemen, Brazil, Mexico, and now to a small, bare and cold cell somewhere in southern California.
At this very moment, our medical care providers are acting as the heroes we know them to be. They should be celebrated for their steadfast courage and dedication to the community’s safety and wellbeing. Our job as medical students is to support those brave practitioners in the way that most protects their safety and the safety of their patients, which very well could mean (and probably does mean) staying home.
In recent days, some medical schools have begun canceling rotations in the face of a growing pandemic. The halls of my own school have been abuzz with conversations of deans and students alike about how a medical school must operate during an outbreak.
Hybrid species, known collectively as chimeras from the eponymous ancient Greek myth of a lion-goat hybrid, arose from the wellspring of human imagination and creativity. With modern advancements in biotechnology, however, chimeras of a sort are less a myth and more of a reality.
On Wednesday, September 20, 2017, after an already uncharacteristically volatile hurricane season, Hurricane María made landfall on the island of Borikén (“Puerto Rico” in the indigenous Taíno language).
With the rise of cheap and rapid gene sequencing techniques, personalized medicine has taken the spotlight in discussions about health care of the future. Personalized medicine describes the tailoring of medical treatment to fit the individual characteristics of each patient.
Conducting research in vulnerable populations and historically marginalized groups can be a delicate process, and because of this, safeguards intended to protect these exact groups can ultimately hinder the research process.
The elegant sport of tennis has evolved over numerous decades, from using wooden rackets to the graphite rackets of today. The historic grass-court stages of Wimbledon have also undergone changes as champions were crowned. Likewise, medical innovations have advanced greatly.
Understanding the origins of words is helpful in medicine. “Genu” and “corpus” are Latin for knee and body, respectively. “Hippos” is Greek for “horse” and “kampos” for “sea monster.” (Can you tell I am in a brain sciences block)?
In 1913, nine years before his death, the physician and medical historian Eugene F. Cordell gave his presidential address to the Medical and Chirurgical Faculty of the State of Maryland. His topic was the “The Importance of the Study of the History of Medicine.”
Outside apartment 13C the street is empty. It is early in the morning, and yet sounds echo from the metal shop beside the lake, roosters crow, and the children upstairs patter back and forth across the tiles. I roll up my yoga mat, shaking dead cockroaches from its rubbery bottom. Through the grated windows I catch a glimpse of Lake Victoria, shimmering out from the cluttered shore of shanties and deconstructed docks to eventually blend with the blue of the morning sky.