January 17 Lunch Meeting: "Everything You Need to Know about 3rd and 4th Year: From Bed Pans to Step Prep"
Noon-1pm, 4016 Varnes (School of Nursing), joint meeting with Orr Society. Register online
Murphy Society Talks Rural Health
By Murphy Society Student Leader Sydnei Tolefree
Dr. Tyler Hughes, recently named the National Rural Health Practitioner of the Year, came to speak to students of Murphy Society over the noon lunch hour on Thursday, November 29. Dr. Hughes was invited to speak about his unique experience as a general surgeon in McPherson, Kansas. Having experienced life and practice in both an urban and rural setting, Dr. Hughes was able to provide a unique perspective. Before moving to McPherson, Dr. Hughes practiced general surgery in Dallas for 15 years. He described his hectic schedule in Dallas, detailing how at one point he had to have his nurse drive him to each of the 5 hospitals he was contracted to cover so that he could sleep during the trip. Eager for change, seventeen years ago an opportunity opened up in McPherson, Ks where he has been ever since.
Dr. Hughes enjoys the fact that in a rural setting, general surgeons have the opportunity to remain generalists. He continuously reads and researches procedures and techniques to be prepared for whatever kind of emergency may come through the door, as rural hospitals often do not have surgical subspecialists at their disposal. The sense of community in the rural setting, where everyone knows everyone, is one of the key aspects that strengthen his commitment to service. While practicing in a rural setting has its benefits, particularly quality of life, it also presents unique difficulties. He warned that despite knowing patients on a personal level, compartmentalizing their medical care is essential to ensure their wellbeing. Doctors must be willing to take a step back from their personal relationship with the patient to do what is necessary for treatment, even if that means making the patient temporarily uncomfortable.
Asking students why they chose medicine, reasons such as financial compensation, "spiritual" aspects of medicine-helping people, figuring out problems and using solutions to impact peoples' lives were offered. Dr. Hughes implored students to further examine their motivations for embarking on the journey of carving out a career in medicine and reflect on what would keep them going year after year, from early morning rounds to late night call.
The growing need for rural physicians is becoming increasingly significant given that approximately 80% of rural practicing physicians are 60 years old or older. Kansas in particular has at least 25 rural counties that are designated as shortage areas. KUMC encourages medical students to pursue careers in underserved areas in order to replace a retiring generation of physicians. Interested students can choose to rotate on a rural surgery preceptorship with Dr. Hughes for a firsthand experience during their 3rd year clinical clerkships.
Murphy and Major Join Forces to Discuss Affordable Care Act
By Murphy Society Student Leader Becca Hamel
With the passage of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, and the current political environment of uncertainty concerninghealth care reform, Suzanne was asked to offer clarity as to how the ACA or repeal of the ACA could impact Murphy and Major students as they graduate and begin to practice. Her expertise is from the Kansas Health Institute, an independent, nonprofit health policy and research organization focused on informing health policy in the state of Kansas.
Suzanne was able to break down the current status of how Kansans pay for their healthcare and how the ACA would impact these patients. As of 2011, 50% of Kansans are covered with insurance from their employer, about 30% receive public program coverage (Medicaid, Medicare) and 13% of Kansans are uninsured. Additionally, the need for primary care physicians was discussed in reviewing that 21% of the population of Kansas lives in a Health Professional Shortage Area. It was also discussed that the need for healthcare reform is based in comparing the amount of money spent on healthcare in the US compared to other countries, and the lack of health outcomes that result.
Focusing on the Affordable Care Act, Suzanne outlined the law's three main components: public health, healthcare cost, and accessibility. New regulations in the law are in place to increase public health and preventative medicine, focus on cost containment, and improve quality of care to reduce quantity. However, many details of how to accomplish these goals are still unclear and certain aspects of the law, such as the Medicaid Expansion, are very controversial. Therefore there is still much discussion concerning the ability of the ACA to make a positive impact on both patients and providers. Further, until after the election in November and even into the near future, many of these questions will remain unanswered as both political parties have very different policy ideas on how to improve upon or repeal components of the ACA. The presentation allowed for detailed discussion of issues between students and faculty alike. A copy of the powerpoint presentation and podcast are provided on the student O Drive under the Resources > Academic Society Podcasts folder. Please contact Suzanne for any questions or further discussion at: firstname.lastname@example.org
It's that time again, we are now taking orders for Murphy society scrubs. Unisex, ScrubZone brand tops and bottoms, inCeil blue with the Murphy logo will be $8 each. Included here is a picture of the scrubs from last year. Feel free to go to the bookstore and try some on beforehand, they do offer tall sizes. The deadline for order submission is Friday November 9th so we can have them back from the printer and ready to hand out before Winter break (and so the M1's can look fresh for cardiopulmonary anatomy dissections). Don't hesitate to email Becca or Sydnei if you have any questions.