Eastern New Mexico University

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Indigenous Health Calls to Action
Health care issues

Recent developments in the search for the children of residential schools have shown that there is much work to be done in terms of truth and reconciliation. Medical schools are similarly placing a higher emphasis on justice for indigenous communities. It's crucial that all applicants understand the Calls to Action, the disparities that indigenous communities face, and how to improve the healthcare system for indigenous peoples.

The Indigenous Health Calls to Action is a response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's recommendations for redressing the historical injustices faced by Indigenous communities in Canada. This initiative aims to improve the healthcare system for Indigenous peoples and address the disparities they face. As future physicians, pre-med students must understand the Calls to Action to better serve Indigenous communities.

The Calls to Action cover various aspects, including child welfare, education, language and culture, health, and justice. It seeks to address the historical context of residential schools and their legacy on Indigenous peoples. Some health-related recommendations include acknowledging the current state of Indigenous health, establishing measurable goals for closing gaps in health outcomes, and providing sustainable funding for healing centers.

For pre-med students, understanding the Calls to Action can help them prepare for a more inclusive and culturally-sensitive healthcare practice. Medical and nursing schools are encouraged to require courses that deal with Indigenous health issues, history, and the legacy of residential schools. Such training should include intercultural competency, conflict resolution, human rights, and anti-racism.

By being aware of these Calls to Action, pre-med students can contribute to a more equitable healthcare system, addressing the unique needs of Indigenous communities. This knowledge will allow future physicians to provide better care to Indigenous patients, understand the historical context of their health disparities, and work collaboratively with Indigenous healers and Elders when appropriate. Overall, understanding the Indigenous Health Calls to Action is crucial for pre-med students to become well-rounded and compassionate physicians capable of serving diverse populations.

Reddit - /r/worldnews
Current events

Subreddit for world news with comments for discussion.

Volunteering Pros and Cons
Self-reflection

Volunteering can open doors and create life-changing experiences. For premed students, it's a fantastic way to gain valuable insights, develop essential skills, and stand out to admissions officers. Here's why you should consider volunteering and how to navigate potential challenges.

Pros:

  1. Develop essential skills: Volunteering equips you with vital skills such as communication, teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving, all of which are crucial for success in medical school and beyond.
  2. Gain real-world experiences: Engage in hands-on experiences in healthcare settings, allowing you to observe medical professionals and better understand the realities of the field.
  3. Enhance your resume: A strong volunteering record demonstrates your dedication, motivation, and passion for medicine, setting you apart from the competition.
  4. Expand your network: Connect with professionals and fellow volunteers who can offer invaluable advice, support, and potential job opportunities in the future.
  5. Personal growth: Volunteering fosters empathy, compassion, and understanding, traits that are essential for a successful medical career.

Cons:

  1. Time commitment: Balancing volunteering with academic work and other responsibilities can be challenging. Prioritize and manage your time effectively to avoid burnout.
  2. Finding the right opportunity: Seek out meaningful and relevant opportunities that align with your interests and goals. Research thoroughly and reach out to professionals in the field for guidance.

Embrace the transformative power of volunteering and let it shape your future in medicine. You'll develop essential skills, gain valuable experiences, and stand out in the admissions process, all while making a positive impact on the lives of others.

Atul Gawande (Author of many medical books)
Health care issues

"Great for understanding and learning about how patients will have different needs and how even if a treatment doesn’t make the most medical sense to a physician that it can actually be the best option based on what is important to the patient. " - Ben on Being Mortal by Atul Gawande

Atul Gawande's books, including Being Mortal (2014), The Checklist Manifesto (2009), Better (2007), and Complications (2002), offer valuable insights into various aspects of medical practice, helping premed students better prepare as future physicians. These books discuss challenges, limitations, and improvement areas in medicine, offering readers a deeper understanding of patient care, medical ethics, and healthcare systems.

Being Mortal focuses on the end-of-life care and the importance of maintaining patients' dignity, autonomy, and quality of life. This book can help premed students appreciate the significance of compassionate and person-centered care, enabling them to consider patients' individual needs and preferences when making medical decisions.

The Checklist Manifesto emphasizes the value of using checklists in healthcare to reduce errors, improve patient outcomes, and streamline complex processes. This book highlights the importance of organization, teamwork, and communication in medical practice, preparing premed students for the collaborative nature of their future careers.

Better discusses the pursuit of excellence in medicine, offering insights into the habits and practices of highly effective physicians. Through this book, premed students can develop a better understanding of medical professionalism and learn strategies to enhance their own performance.

Complications explores the uncertainties and complexities inherent in medical practice, examining how physicians make decisions, handle errors, and deal with unexpected outcomes. This book encourages premed students to acknowledge and confront these challenges, fostering a more resilient and adaptable mindset.

In summary, Atul Gawande's books provide premed students with valuable perspectives on various aspects of medicine, helping them develop a well-rounded understanding of the profession and preparing them to become empathetic, effective, and ethical physicians.

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