October 2015 Updates

Student Group Events

BUSM Physicians for a National Health Program


From October 30-31, 2015, twelve BUSM students attended the Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL. We joined numerous health care professionals and labor activists in a protest and march against for-profit insurance company greed. We spent the day of the conference taking part in workshops related to single payer advocacy, on topics ranging from building legislative support, to getting started in research-based advocacy, to improving care for undocumented immigrants. We heard from numerous resident and attending physicians in support of single payer, including Drs. Gordy Schiff and Adam Gaffney, both part of BUSM’s chapter. – Clara ZhuIMG_0012

BUSM Clinical Neuroscience Society


Dr Peter Cummings, Forensic Pathologist, gave a lunch talk on the pathology of zombies. The talk was mostly based on his book. It was a very well attended event. – Jessica Ngzombie-poster

BUSM Creative Arts Society


The Creative Arts Society hosted a Paint Night in Chequers for 40 students to relax, release creative energy, and enjoy an evening together. We supplied paints, brushes, canvases, and two autumnal still-lifes; all the students needed to bring was themselves. Students showcased their talents and painted the Boston skyline, flowers, landscapes, cats, and anatomical structures. The event was such a success that we hope to host more Paint Nights in the future! – Melissa Warstadt12194891_10153092153552691_5655769062158283810_o-1


BUSM Disabilities & Illness Interest Group

The Disabilities & Illness Interest Group was happy to welcome Dr. Sara Bachman from the School of Public Health, who spoke about children with disabilities and their interactions with the health care system in the United States. Medical and Physician Assistant students, interested in pediatrics, advocacy, and policy, participated in the discussion. The Disabilities & Illness Interest Group seeks to expose students to different perspectives – from that of the system, to that of the clinician, and finally to that of the patients and their families – in order to raise awareness for this demographic and improve future care and outcomes. We hope you will be able to join us for our next event!

BUSM Historical Society


Today, Dr. Hughes led a group of 30 students through three tunnels beneath BMC, 72 E. Concord St., and the School of Public Health building. The tour was preceded by a luncheon and brief lecture by Dr. Hughes on the history of tunnels at BMC and tunnels at other hospitals, like the VA.The event has been well received by students in the past, and this year was no exception. Dr. Hughes did an excellent job of making it light and fun for all involved. The Historical Society looks forward to hosting this event again next year. – Nathan Barr


Ophthalmology Interest Group

The “Ophthalmology as a Career” lunch talk took place on 10/27, featuring Dr. Edward Feinberg, Chairman Emeritus of the Department of Ophthalmology. Dr. Feinberg gave a presentation about pursuing a career in Ophthalmology. The lecture served as an introductory overview of the field, including an overview of the training process and subspecialties. – Connie YangOIG 151027

BUSM Pediatric Education and Development Society

The Pediatric Education and Development Society attended the American Academy of Pediatrics’ annual National Conference and Exhibition in Washington DC from 10/23-10/25. We accepted the award for Pediatrics Interest Group of the Year and gave a presentation on what we accomplished over the last year. We attended programming specifically for educating medical students, we learned how pediatricians can advocate for child health, and we had the opportunity to meet many inspiring pediatricians. We thank SCOMSA and the AAP for the tremendous opportunity! – Victoria GoreFullSizeRender

BUSM Urology Interest Group


At this breakfast talk, Dr. Katz and a panel of 4th year students applying to urology gave a general introduction to the field to first and second years. We discussed the variety of surgeries and procedures that are performed within this field, as well as the culture and the day to day life of a urologist. We also discussed shadowing opportunities and research for those interested in getting more involved. – Claire Lis

Clinical Neuroscience Society & Student Interest Group in Neurology

On October 20, 2015, SIGN and CNS co-hosted their first joint event of the year. During this event, Dr. Hohler, movement disorder specialist was accompanied by a Parkinson’s disease patient. He was able to tell students more about his past medical history and Deep Brain Stimulator (DBS) implantation. Dr. Hohler performed a shortened version of a neurological exam, showed students past devices, and even adjusted his DBS. – Naillid Felipe

BUSM Integrative Medicine

On 10/19/2015 at 12pm in Room L311 Dr. Robert Saper gave a lunch talk entitled “Integrative Medicine: What it is.” While first and second year medical students enjoyed a Whole Foods lunch, Dr Saper explained how integrative medicine has developed and how it is practiced by physicians of all specialties in the US. His historical overview and relevant experience in incorporating integrative medicine into his practice was valued by the attendees. At the end of the presentation Dr. Saper answered questions from the audience members. – Lisa Voltarelli10-19-15-Dr.-Saper-Talk-1

Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association

On Oct 16th, we invited two Cantonese-speaking patient of a third year Internal Medicine resident at BMC for our patient panel discussion. The event was attended by 20+ students and our adviser, Dr. Teresa Cheng. It was an interactive discussion between the students and the patients with the help of interpretation by a medical student. – Jessica Ng


BUSM IHI Chapter

On October 15th, the BUSM IHI Chapter had the first information session of the 2015-2016 school year. Medical students were introduced to the concept of Quality Improvement, learned about the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and heard about ways to get involved in QI projects at BUSM/BMC. Several 4th year medical students (Justin, Lizzeth and Sara) spoke about their experiences working on QI projects during medical school and how other students can also get involved. There was a great turn-out and the BUSM IHI Chapter is excited to start connecting students with projects going on at BMC! – Vonne Lee


Internal Medicine Interest Group

In honor of National Primary Care Week, the Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Geriatrics, Family Medicine, and OB/GYN Interest Groups hosted a TED-style lunch event on October 9th. Five BMC physicians shared their patient stories and clinical pearls with first and second year students. Everyone enjoyed hearing about how each clinician finds meaning in the doctor-patient relationship. Talks included: What Every Pediatrician Should Carry in Their Bag, Caring for the Whole Adult: Finding Joy (and Woe) as a General Internist, On Making House Calls and Home-Based Primary Care, Stories from the Front Lines: A Doctor’s Journey with Her Patients Towards Wellness, and OBGYNs Without Borders: Women’s & Gender Health Beyond the Hospital. – Jana FlorianIMIG 15109


Student Attendance at National Conferences

American Society of Anesthesiologists Annual Meeting


I travelled to San Diego to take part in the annual national meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists. There were many interesting lectures including many for medical students such as advice on interviewing, advice for picking a subspecialty, and a meet and great with representatives from many of the residency programs. Other lectures focused on such diverse topics as improving patient safety through teamwork, debates on the perioperative surgical home, and the long term effects of anesthetic agents on pediatric patients. – Daniel McGrail

American Society of Anesthesiologists

As a fourth year medical student committed to pursuing anesthesiology, I had the opportunity to join the national annual anesthesiology conference held in San Diego. On the first day, I had the pleasure of participating in a number of events including the opening speech by US Navy Commander Michael Abrashoff on leadership, an expert panel on the career options of cardiac anesthesiology and critical care, medical student interviewing tip, as well as a networking session through the residency program meet and greet. On the second day, I was a member of the audience for a presentation on the long term neuro-cognitive deficits from exposure to anesthetic agents in the pediatric and geriatric population, a debate on the Peri-surgical Home Care, a new longitudinal, team-based management model for surgical patients, and a presentation on how to excel in residency. Throughout the conference, I learned about novel products and technology in anesthesia, such as the co-axial breathing tube, fiberoptic bronchoscopy, tissue oximetry, and High Reliability Organization. Participating in the conference was an excellent way to gain motivation to pursue anesthesiology as a career as well as improve as future physician. I also had the pleasure of being updated on the most recent research and consensus on pressing issues and networking with established anesthesiologists. I certainly hope to join the conference in the near future as an anesthesiologist and a presenter. – Edward J. HongEdward - ASA

American Society of Anesthesiologists 


The annual ASA meeting was in San Diego this year. As a student, this was a great opportunity to learn more about the specialty as well as network with different residencies across the country. Saturday was the day with the most events for students. The main speaker for the event, a retired naval captain, gave a great talk about how he turned one of the worst performing ships in the pacific into the top performing one, giving correlations to leadership in medicine along the way. There were then 2 great talks on student loans that went into detail the pros and cons of certain repayment strategies. Other events included specific talks on cardiac and critical care anesthesiology.  On Saturday evening, we had the residency meet and greet. Similar to a college fair, residencies from across the country set up booths where program directors and residents were available to give information about their program. This was a great opportunity to meet residency directors at programs you want to interview at, or, at programs you will be interviewing at.Sunday was mainly poster presentations. I also went to check out the device exhibits. All the latest airway devices (video laryngoscopes, fiberoptic) were available for me to try out. Advanced invasive vital signs monitoring devices were also on display, with all the latest devices for CVP, pulse ox, and stroke volume variance on display.  Overall, I would highly recommend attending the conference if you are interested in Anestheisology as a career because of:
1. Networking with residencies
2. Learning more about the specialty from a students perspective and a physician perspective
3. Hands on experience with various devices not usually open for students to use during the clerkship 
-Jason Kung

American Society of Radiation Oncology’s Annual Meeting


This October I had the distinct privilege to attend the American Society of Radiation Oncology’s Annual Meeting 2015. The poster reception allowed me network with other medical students, residents, and physicians in the field. I learned many practical aspects of the field, and understood how clinicians interpret new research and implement these findings into their daily patient care. I also attended the ASTRO Presidential Address, which focused on new standards of care and the trials supporting them. This talk was an immensely useful overview of specific cancers and the advancements, drawbacks, and changes that radiation oncology has experienced over the past few years. Overall, this meeting was immensely valuable, and I would recommend it to any student interested in the field. – Bhartesh Shah


Student Presentations at National Conferences

American Urological Association – New England Section


The AUA Mid-Atlantic and New England Section 2015 Joint Meeting was held in the Bahamas at the Atlantis resort on October 22-24. During this conference, I presented my research on infection rates among polysubstance abusers following IPP surgery. This was the first national conference at which I have presented my work and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. I also attended several workshops/discussions where I learned about innovative surgical technology. The entire experience was invaluable and I am so grateful to have been able to attend. – Alejandra Balen

American Society for Therapeutic Radiation Oncology
10/19/15 – 10/20/15

I presented a research poster at the ASTRO Annual Meeting Conference in San Antonio, Texas about my research on the impact of demographic factors and tumor biology on disparities in breast cancer treatment. The conference was a great chance to learn more about the field of radiation oncology, ongoing research in the field and network and interact with professionals in the field of radiation oncology. I particularly enjoyed the panel discussion on the impact of breast cancer tumor markers on treatment modalities. – Shivani Khanna

American Society of Radiation Oncology

The American Society for Radiation Oncology Annual meeting, held in San Antonio this year, featured speakers from around the world to discuss advances in radiation oncology. I presented research regarding differences in treatment choice due to BMI in prostate cancer, research which was completed in the department of radiation oncology at BU. In addition, I presented work on using time-driven activity-based costing to drive quality improvements in the use of brachytherapy for prostate cancer. Leaders from across field presented their vision for radiation oncology moving forward and key researchers presented clinical trials on many topics, including advances in the treatment of gynecologic malignancies. – Ankit AgarwalAM2015_banner_548x152

Homeless Health Immersion Experience

On October 1-3, 2015, I attended and presented at the AMA conference in medical education innovation, the American Medical Association Change MedEd Conference, in Chicago, IL. I presented on the Homeless Healthcare Curriculum, which is a student driven curriculum created by combined work of service learning groups, Homeless Health Immersion Experience and Outreach Van Project. The presentation went extremely well, and was met with great enthusiasm from educators at other medical schools, interested in implementing similar programs at their school. The AMA also ran a news article this past week about the program and presentation, which can be found at this link:
Overall, it was a fantastic experience, and I was honored to share the work of our BU homeless health service learning groups at a national forum. – Theresa Timmes
Tess - HHIE


Vermont Oxford Network Annual Congress

The VON Annual Congress is a yearly gathering of neonatologists discussing ways to improve quality of care and patient safety in NICUs across the country. Over 1000 professionals gather at VON to participate in workshops, discussions, and a poster fair. I had the opportunity to present a poster of a systematic review of the data methods used in neonatal quality improvement that I worked on over the summer. Positive and constructive feedback on the poster will help guide my future work. SCOMSA funding made it possible for me to attend this event and learn from some of the leaders in this field. I learned a lot from the interactive workshops, understood data about new trials in neonataology, and got more information about future career pathways. I look forward to working more in the field! – Nikita SaxenaNikita - VON Annual Congress
Primary teaching affiliate
of BU School of Medicine