We know we are among many who started to think more about systemic racism in the spring of 2020. We heard the call of anti-racism protesters advocating for accountability and change and watched as COVID-19 disproportionately impacted minority communities across our state. We recognize that addressing racism in healthcare is vital for the care of our patients, but we need to do a better job of actively participating in the work. As Maya Angelou said, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” We know better, and we are working to do better. We support diversity, strive for equity, and recognize the continual work it requires to be inclusive. A dedicated group of faculty and residents are currently leading efforts to systematically support anti-racism across all levels of the program.
Health Care Policy and Advocacy
Our residency program seeks to provide all of our residents with an opportunity to learn about healthcare policy and advocacy. We recognize that this area of medicine does not appeal to everyone, however, as the practice of medicine becomes increasingly influenced by political, social and economic policies, we think that all physicians should have a fundamental understanding about these concepts.
Every year, we host a three-day seminar about these core concepts and all of our senior residents are required to attend. We invite experts in Medicare/Medicaid legislation, social determinants of health, the legislative process, health economics and physician advocacy to speak to our trainees. We feel that this area of medical education is often not formally taught in residency and we are seeking to change that to provide our residents with a more well-rounded education. We recognize that the majority of our graduates will not go on to become policy experts, however, we hope that they walk away from this seminar with a better understanding of how social, economic and political policies influence both their practice and their patient’s health.
For residents who are interested in pursuing health care policy further, we encourage them to apply for the ACP Health Policy Internship Program. Our former graduate, Matt Mulligan, was accepted to this program in 2019 and spent his elective time in Washington D.C. to gain further insight into the cross section of healthcare and politics.
In 2017 our residency program became curious about how engagement in community philanthropic activities might impact personal wellness. With more thought we submitted a grant combining community engagement, philanthropy, and team building. We invited other residency programs that we interact with frequently (Emergency Medicine, Neurology, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation) to join us in 3-4 philanthropic events each academic year that support our local community. These events include:
- Roadhome night/Sandwich night
- Food drive
- Fourth street clinic
- Race against racism
- Ronald McDonald