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Entries in Medical Education (3)

Sunday
Aug122012

New Media Boot Camp For Doctors

Harvard Medical School and the Discovery Channel have teamed up to offer first-of-its-kind media training conference for physicians.

About a year ago, John Whyte, MD, vice president for continuing medical education at Discovery Channel, introduced himself to me and said, "Discovery Channel and Harvard Health Publications should host a joint conference for doctors who want to take their careers to the next level."

What seemed like a bit of a wild idea at first has become a reality, and the conference titled Creating the Brand Called Dr. You: Media Training Boot Camp for Doctors will be held at the Discovery Channel global headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland. When I visited John at Discovery Channel, it was truly an amazing place to be, and I think it's the perfect location for this course!

nonclinical media training conference for physicians

Doctors (and other professionals) who take this all-inclusive course will come away with:

  • Live TV training
  • Teleprompter experience
  • Radio coaching
  • Professional headshot
  • Video/reel
  • Strategies to improve an online platform
  • And much more!

This is a first time ever offering, and we're not sure if we'll do it again. There are only 100 slots for attendees, so we expect it to fill up fast. Therefore, if you are interested in attending, check out the website, and I hope to see you there!

Learn more about this conference here.

Wednesday
Mar022011

Informed Consent: The U.S. Medical Education System Explained

If you are considering a career in medicine or currently in training, you need to read this book.

Not long ago I posted a short blog entry about Dr. Benjamin Brown and his controversial analysis of physician income.  At the time, Dr. Brown's blog had around 200 comments.  As of today, over 320 comments have been posted and more seem to come by the hour.

Why the incredible interest in this topic?

Well, for one, we're in a recession and the general public still considers physicians "rich."  For someone to have the nerve to insinuate that not all physicians are wealthy and some are actually underpaid is to cut across the grain of conventional thinking at a time when thinking conventionally is very popular.

The other reason is that I have never seen an analysis of physician income like the one Dr. Brown posted on his site.  It is well done and interesting, and physicians should take the time to read through his material.

Based on the comments, it appears that many physicians are reading this information which tells me that no one else has seen an analysis like the one Dr. Brown has produced.  Unfortunately, something as important as a basic analysis of the financial implications of a career in medicine is not coming from our academic medical establishment, but from a surgery resident who compiled the data in his spare time.  

Go figure.

Well, the good news is that Dr. Brown's book, Informed Consent: The U.S. Medical Education System Explained is now available.  If you're interested, you can check out the book's website and either download a copy to your Kindle or iPad, or order the paperback.

I downloaded a copy for the Kindle ap on my iPad, and have really been enjoying it.  While much of the book is tailored for a young person considering a career in medicine, even physicians out of training will enjoy reading the sections on physician income and the high costs of medical education.

Dr. Benjamin Brown, author of Informed ConsentI recommend this book to any young person considering a healthcare career, any medical student or resident, and any physician who is out in practice and having a difficult time explaining to friends and relatives the true financial implications of being a physician.  

Many thanks to Dr. Brown for his timely piece.  We at Freelance MD wish him continued success in his medical education. 

Sunday
Feb202011

Physician Income And The Curious Case Of Dr. Benjamin Brown

Physician income analyzed.

I stumbled upon a very interesting blog post the other day.  It's entitled, The Deceptive Income of Physicians, and was written by Dr. Benjamin Brown, a plastic surgery resident who is also the author of the upcoming book, Informed Consent: The US Medical Education System Explained.  Here's how it begins:

Physicians spend about 40,000 hours training and over $300,000 on their education, yet the amount of money they earn per hour is only a few dollars more than a high school teacher.  Physicians spend over a decade of potential earning, saving and investing time training and taking on more debt, debt that isn’t tax deductible.  When they finish training and finally have an income – they are taxed heavily and must repay their debt with what remains.   The cost of tuition, the length of training and the U.S. tax code places physicians into a deceptive financial situation.

The post is an interesting read and has generated a lot of discussion.  As of today, there have been 203 comments.

What I find most "curious" about this post-- aside from the passionate comments-- is the fact that I have never seen physician incomes analyzed like this before.  It is an unfortunate fact that most medical students remain completely naive to the financial implications of their choice of profession, and their potential specialty choices.

I wrote a recent blog post about this very issue where I quoted Dr. Robert Doroghazi, author of the book, The Physician's Guide to Investing: A Practical Guide to Building Wealth , as saying: 

"I believe the position of the academic medical establishment to deny medical students financial instruction is naive, hypocritical, and indefensible.  They should acknowledge that money is important.  It is never as important as your patient.  It is never as important as your family, your health, your freedom, or your integrity.  But is is important."

I couldn't agree more.

The medical establishment in this country should be ashamed of themselves.  Instead of having very frank and necessary discussions with medical students about the financial implications of becoming a physician, our medical leaders turn a blind eye to this very real need, and medical students are cast out into a harsh economic world with little financial knowledge to protect themselves and their families from potential financial ruin.

It is really an embarrassment to the medical community that this information isn't coming from the academic medical establishment, but a surgery resident who did the work in his spare time.

Thanks to Dr. Brown for making this information available to all of us.  I look forward to reading his upcoming  book.

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