A Word From the President

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

What Americans think about medical schools and teaching hospitals

by Darrell G. Kirch, MD, AAMC President and CEO
AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD, reveals the results of the latest AAMC public opinion research report. The good news: They like us. They really like us.

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“That’s when I knew I wanted to be a doctor”

by Darrell G. Kirch, MD, AAMC President and CEO
AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD, reflects on his own path to becoming a physician as a new class of MDs graduates into residency.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

A rude awakening

by Julie Kim, MD, PhD

From chronic absences to nasty emails, unprofessional behavior can derail even the most promising medical student’s career. The chair of one school’s conduct committee has a solution.

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Monday, June 11, 2018

Cancer and our kids: We can do better

by Lois Ramondetta, MD

Less than half of U.S. teenagers have been protected against HPV. Here’s why physicians must do more to promote timely vaccination—and how.

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Every day, 20 people die waiting for an organ transplant. Every 10 minutes, someone new is added to the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) national transplant waiting list.

If you need a kidney—the organ most in demand—you might wait three to five years on the UNOS list before being matched. A liver or lung transplant could take six months to a year.  

What’s more, the number of people on the waiting list continues to far outstrip supply. In 2016, more than 115,000 Americans were waiting for an organ, but just 16,000 people donated. Yet 5,000 organs were discarded from deceased donors in 2016 alone, according to a 2017 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.  

In light of these startling statistics, academic medical centers have been exploring new ways to boost the supply of viable organs. The use of organs from so-called marginal donors—defined as those who are older or who have diabetes, hypertension, or even infectious diseases such as Hepatitis C or HIV—has opened new avenues for research, says Janis Orlowski, MD, a transplant nephrologist and AAMC chief health care officer. So has improving the transport of organs to limit tissue damage.

“Reducing the number of discarded organs could help fill a critical need for organs,” Orlowski says.  

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Academic Medicine in the News

Thursday, August 09, 2018

New podcast highlights work done at UMass Medical School

The University of Massachusetts Medical School launched a new podcast called Voices of UMassMed that examines the stories behind the research, patient care, and medical education being done at the university. Each episode highlights the work of one faculty member.  

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Potential key to unlocking the immune system in pancreatic cancer discovered

Researchers at the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center have shown that a molecule called interleukin-35 plays a role in suppressing cancer-fighting immune cells in pancreatic cancer, a breakthrough that could boost immune-based treatments.

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Distraction pads help keep patients busy — and safe

Volunteers at the Mayo Clinic have created a distraction pad — designed with zippers, buttons, and different types of fabric — to help reduce anxiety and agitation for patients  undergoing procedures. Both the pediatric and neurology departments now have specialized pads created for their unique patient populations.