Seeing A New Perspective - Medical Education and Global Health Awareness

June 16, 2011

We recently met with the founders of RadioRounds.org and the Executive Director of the Timmy Foundation during a meeting held with our Med Plus Advantage team who is working closely with these two organizations. The purpose was to discuss how to better engage and speak to medical students, residents and other healthcare professionals. Both of the organizations provide valuable content and services to the medical community. More so, much of the information is focused on real life stories, experiences and issues that medical students may not be exposed to in a standardized academic setting.

I was not only impressed with their business acumen, but also their ability to highlight the importance of global healthcare awareness, educational opportunities and insight beyond the clinical/classroom setting. As the AMA Insurance Agency, we try to improve on how we communicate with our students and deliver relevant information to benefit their careers. Our meeting provided important insight as we move forward.

 

Radio Rounds – The Who, What, When, & Where

 

Radio Rounds is the nation's first and only medical talk show produced entirely by medical students. Founded and based at Wright State University, Radio Rounds regularly engages with esteemed professionals in the medical field, including professors, surgeons, and authors. All weekly broadcasts air online via WWSU 106.9 FM and are also accessible via free podcast on iTunes.

Radio Rounds offers its content on-demand via download, written summaries for its listeners and a full archive of broadcasts for topics that will ALWAYS be relevant for medical students (i.e., career planning).

Around the World with Timmy Global Health

The Timmy Foundation raises awareness and support for global health. It works with medical schools nationwide to place interested students in communities in need. Rather than focusing on short-term care, Timmy has adopted a long-range perspective and manages its program and students to have year-round presence wherever possible.

It attempts to provide structure, support and planning to a sometimes cumbersome and difficult process. Further, it works within the local guidelines and helps its patients to overcome obstacles such as language, finances and treatment accessibility.


Engaging Medical Students

Two items really struck a chord with me. First, I was impressed with their ability to involve medical students.

Radio Rounds delivers content and information for medical students provided by medical students. The information is relevant in terms of practical advice for medical school as well as current health trends. For example, Radio Rounds recently covered pediatric surgery in Iraq, the benefits of local farmers markets, and head collisions in the NFL. Topics get discussed between experts and medical students, or, in other words, information paired with involvement.

Listen to Radio Rounds' most recent episodes.

The Timmy Foundation relies on testimonials and video from past and current participants to drive home their positive impact. Their content shares their point of view and gives a glimpse into the poor communities they aid worldwide. Again, by pairing their unique message with involvement from their target audience, they expand their reach and encourage more donors and students to aid.

Watch a video summarizing the Timmy Foundation's program.

This can even apply to your day-to-day. In your role as a physician, it may mean taking a few more minutes to explain the issues a patient (and his/her family) may face in terms they can better comprehend. Patients may not know what questions to ask. Seeing the situation through their eyes can benefit both you and your practice.

Second, both Radio Rounds and the Timmy Foundation are hopeful the lessons learned are  maintained and shared throughout the students' medical careers.

Have you fostered your patient relationships to the point of driving repeat visits and increased patient retention as the patient(s) grow older? Or do you operate in a small referral network with trustworthy colleagues that can benefit your patients and their health?

In the end, I'm challenged by some of the thoughts our meeting prompted me to evaluate when it comes to AMA Insurance. This blog is a two-way conversation between myself and the physicians reading—so I'll ask, what can we at AMA Insurance do to make your lives as practicing physicians easier and more financially stable? 

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