History Of Healthcare In America #8: Eisenhower

In contrast to the prevailing opinion of the Republican Party as it stands today (and might likely have been along the same lines at the time), Eisenhower presents a plan here in this video that embraces greater involvement of the federal government in the health and welfare of individuals. While the avoidance of socialism remained to be a crucial issue at this time, Eisenhower nevertheless emphasized the need for better healthcare for all Americans, with concrete steps towards improvement.     Healthcare is one of the hottest topics in discussion today. But how exactly did the American healthcare system come to be? What were some of the dynamic modifications and transformations it went through in order to embody its present form?   Rather than looking at it from a purely chronological and historical perspective, let’s analyze the progression of healthcare from a political viewpoint. The politics and policymaking around this topic has been marked by constant debate and controversy. Our presidents have been some of the most vocal advocates on this matter, shaping the course of healthcare over the past several decades.   Thus, in the course of the next several articles, we will be looking at short clips from presidents, both recent and past (yet undoubtedly notable). My hope is to gain a better understanding of the past, present, and hopefully the future of healthcare. Who knows, we...

Why Is It So Easy To Become Jaded In Medicine?

12 weeks and counting…   This is the amount of time that I have spent so far as a medical student. It had always been my dream to become a physician, finally moving beyond the free exploration during my college years to a focused pursuance and application of medicine. I was excited to finally start learning the tricks of the trade – how do you run a code, what complications can arise from putting in a central line, will I ever get to do a bedside thoracotomy in my career, and much more. But most important of all, having the fortunate privilege of talking to patients, helping them, and being a part of their journey to recovery was the most energizing.     However, having been in the classroom for the past 3 months, I am starting to see why one can simply drift into a state of complacency, caring only about passing through to get to the next stage in the process. Your motivation starts to dwindle and you start thinking about the least harmful option.   So what really is the culprit behind this characteristic progression in the lives of many aspiring medical professionals? And is there nothing we can do to stop it?   As it turns out, there are multiple factors that contribute to this phenomenon, including the sheer amount of material that a medical...

TED Talks For Food Lovers #3: Aquaculture

Well, I promised you something offbeat, so here it is. In this TED Talk by Chef Dan Barber, listen to his discovery of a delicious fish that he could bring and keep on the menu for those salivating mouths, incorporating the novelty of a revolutionary farming method in Spain. In the future, this new aquaculture could give us a sustainable way to keep fish in our diets, as well as our future patients’ diets.     Diet and health are highly interdependent. The food people eat over the course of a lifetime often plays a huge role in determining many of the ailments they incur. Referring to some recent exploration into the field of microbiomics, the large quantity and variety of bacteria in our body may likewise be acutely as well as chronically transforming due to the food we eat and the changes we make to our diets. Lastly, for aspiring medical personnel, quick food sources such as cold pizzas, Chipotle veggie bowls, and espresso shots often make up our daily sustenance. What effect do these have on our health?   Over the course of the next several articles, I would like to take you all on a run through some of the most interesting TED talks on food, some quite interesting and others downright genius. As you watch these videos, reflect on the close ties between nutrition and...

Medical Shows To Remember #7: Heartbeat

While we have quite a few shows already in existence, there are always new ones that continue to surprise us. Heartbeat is one such series that likely has the makings of being a great show. Everything from being based on a true story of a surgeon to the high-paced action and drama that we crave, this program inspires all prospective medical students to strive tirelessly in pursuit of excellence and passion.     Just as depicted in my last collection of articles on medicine in the realm of big screen cinema, television is likewise marked by a wide variety of showings that bring forth the novelty as well as uniqueness of the medical field. While many of us are familiar with a good majority of these shows, some are not so well known (yet still reflect key aspects of medicine worth pondering).   Over the course of 10 articles, I will be presenting you all with some clips from some of the most famous as well as artistically fascinating shows in television history. Fondly reminisce the ones you have come across (and binge watched several times) while starting to get your winter list together for the new ones (that you now just have to watch)!   7. Heartbeat As a medical student myself, I can attest to the frequent bursts of inspiration needed in order to keep going and continuously...

History Of Healthcare In America #7: Kennedy

During his short presidency prior to his tragic assassination, Kennedy laid out a vision for universal healthcare in American that would influence the ideas and strategies of several presidents that came after him. As shown in this video, Kennedy laid out a relatively radical idea at the time, proposing collaboration between the government and the people to ensure access to healthcare as did almost every other developed nation in the world. In another sense, he laid down the groundwork for the Affordable Care Act that was enacted under Obama.     Healthcare is one of the hottest topics in discussion today. But how exactly did the American healthcare system come to be? What were some of the dynamic modifications and transformations it went through in order to embody its present form?   Rather than looking at it from a purely chronological and historical perspective, let’s analyze the progression of healthcare from a political viewpoint. The politics and policymaking around this topic has been marked by constant debate and controversy. Our presidents have been some of the most vocal advocates on this matter, shaping the course of healthcare over the past several decades.   Thus, in the course of the next several articles, we will be looking at short clips from presidents, both recent and past (yet undoubtedly notable). My hope is to gain a better understanding of the past, present,...

TED Talks For Food Lovers #2: The Brain In Your Gut

You know that satisfying feeling you get when you munch down on your favorite food after a long day of being hungry, filling your mind and body with absolute pleasure? Well, as it turns out, our intestines could house millions of neurons that give rise to quite surprising feelings. Hear Food Scientist Heribert Watzke talk all about it in this TED talk.     Diet and health are highly interdependent. The food people eat over the course of a lifetime often plays a huge role in determining many of the ailments they incur. Referring to some recent exploration into the field of microbiomics, the large quantity and variety of bacteria in our body may likewise be acutely as well as chronically transforming due to the food we eat and the changes we make to our diets. Lastly, for aspiring medical personnel, quick food sources such as cold pizzas, Chipotle veggie bowls, and espresso shots often make up our daily sustenance. What effect do these have on our health?   Over the course of the next several articles, I would like to take you all on a run through some of the most interesting TED talks on food, some quite interesting and others downright genius. As you watch these videos, reflect on the close ties between nutrition and medicine, and what we can due as future clinicians to best counsel...

Changing Seasons Got You Feeling Sad? It may be SAD.

There are many reasons why autumn is such a wonderful season: the crisp, cool air, the red-, yellow-, and orange-hued leaves, the comfy clothes and comfort foods. As the summertime sadness dissipates and the holiday season quickly approaches, there is a new excitement in the air. Still, as the sun starts to rise later and later and set earlier and earlier, the amount of daylight we get each day slowly dwindles.   As a result, common phrases around this time of year include, “I hate how it gets so dark so early” or “Winter is so depressing.” It is common to feel a little sad or “down” during the fall and winter months. However, if this depressed state becomes severe, it may be SAD, or Seasonal Affective Disorder.     SAD is a type of depression that some people experience during periods with less natural light, typically during the winter. In the video below from The Doctor’s Channel, Meir Kryger, MD, FRCPC, talks about seasonal affective disorder, signs, symptoms and treatments. He notes that the symptoms of SAD are similar to those of depression. The main difference, however, is that a patient with SAD will see these symptoms start to disappear come springtime, whereas a patient with depression will continue to have these symptoms.   He also discusses the importance of light on our mood and well-being, which mostly relates to how our brain functions....