Future Docs

Future Docs is a radio and online documentary project that follows the experiences of medical students and residents as they become doctors. They are our “Future Docs.” Our key question: what’s it like to become a doctor today in Rhode Island, and how is that changing? Along the way, we’re talking to experts, analyzing relevant news, and looking beyond Rhode Island’s borders to create a richer picture of doctor education today.

About Future Docs

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Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Throughout the school year, we've been following two bright, young, future doctors. Now, we're wrapping up the journey with a one-hour documentary about the crucible of medical school, set against the backdrop of some of the most dramatic changes in health care in a generation. Listen to the full hour or individual segments online, below, or download and listen on the go.

Dr. Stanley Aronson on the Future Docs of America

May 15, 2013

As we celebrate the conclusion of our school-year-long series "Future Docs," guest blogger Dr. Stanley M. Aronson reflects on how far medical education has come since he entered the field 70 years ago.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Throughout the school year, we’ve been documenting the experiences of two Brown University medical students. They’ve begun their careers at a time when health care is changing dramatically – from where we get care to who provides it and how we pay for it. But our Future Docs Sarah and Peter are ready to dive in. They’re about to begin their third year in medical school, leaving behind the familiarity of the classroom for the new world of the hospital wards.

New data from the Association of American Medical Colleges shows med school enrollment is on track to reach a 30% increase by 2017. That's over enrollment numbers in 2002.

Rhode Island's own Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University is no exception, with record enrollment numbers.

What's most interesting about the data is that a good number of the new med school slots are in newly accredited or in-the-process-of-becoming accredited medical schools. There's one in our own backyard that fits that bill, Quinnipiac.

Future Docs: Live Forum at Brown

Apr 27, 2013

Today, who takes care of you, where, and how your care is paid for is shifting dramatically. Tomorrow’s doctors need to understand how to work in teams, how to balance quality and cost, and maybe even how to keep an entire population – and not just a single patient – healthy.

Hear how Brown’s medical school faculty are responding to this changing landscape through innovations in the curriculum. Plus, meet the two medical students who have been featured in Rhode Island Public Radio’s school-year-long documentary seriesFuture Docs.”

The forum is moderated by Kristin Gourlay, health care reporter, Rhode Island Public Radio.

Panelists include:

· Rhode Island Lt. Governor Elizabeth Roberts

· Paul George, MD, Director of Year II curriculum at the Alpert Medical School of Brown University

· Second year medical students Peter Kaminski and Sarah Rapoport, featured on “Future Docs

The forum is moderated by Kristin Gourlay, health care reporter, Rhode Island Public Radio.

Forum recorded at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University on Tuesday April 23.

Before the forum, Dr. Stanley Aronson spoke to the audience about the advances in medical training. You can read his comments here on his guest blog post.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Some of the toughest decisions any of us will ever make will take place in a doctor’s office. But before those decisions ever come up, doctors must often wrestle with the options themselves. And those options are growing more complicated every year. In this next to last episode in our series Future Docs, we ask how today’s medical students are learning to grapple with tomorrow’s ethical questions.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Where can you meet Future Docs Sarah and Peter and hear from some of Rhode Island's finest minds in health care and medical education? Wonder no more.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

What do doctors need to learn in school to take the best care of you? Clearly, they need advanced medical and scientific knowledge. But should we expect doctors to know something about how our health care system works? How about the Affordable Care Act – one of the most important changes in health care policy in a generation? We continue our ongoing series Future Docs with some answers.

Dr. Anne Kuritzky is about five hours into her shift on the trauma unit at Rhode Island Hospital when the next call comes.

Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine / Quinnipiac University

This fall the new medical school at Connecticut's Quinnipiac University welcomes its first class of incoming students. And the school is apparently focused on turning out a particular kind of doctor. From their web site:

Photo by: Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Brown University's medical school and Johnson & Wales University's new physician assistant program are going to look for ways to collaborate, the schools announced today. What might that look like? According to the announcement: "sharing training facilities, jointly arranging lectures, pursuing educational grants, and engaging in cost-sharing."

The medical students we've been following this year, Sarah Rapoport and Peter Kaminski, are about to wrap up their second year of medical school and, with it, their time in the classroom. They'll spend their third and fourth years in the hospital, learning on the job.

Missed a Future Doc? You can always listen online. Or here's a way to download a story and listen later: just click on the story you're interested in, and look for the download link above it, to the right.

Pi., Leiden, Holland / Wikimedia Commons

This Friday at 1:00 pm EDT, more than 17,000 U.S. medical school seniors and another 16,000 other applicants (internationals, etc.) find out where they'll train as residents for the next several years of their lives.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

During the past school year, Rhode Island Public Radio has been following two Brown University medical students to see how medical training is evolving with changes in health care. We’re checking in now with Future Docs Sarah Rapoport and Peter Kaminski, who are about to leave the classroom for the exam room – in more ways than one.

Association of American Medical Colleges

New data is out in a report from the Association of American Medical Colleges on diversity in medical school applications, enrollments, graduations, and faculty. The headlines: future doctors are still mostly white, and mostly men. But the gap has narrowed dramatically between female and male graduates. African American applications to medical school are up more than 30%, but fewer black men are applying these days.

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