Creating a Residency Journal, Why and How?
By Abdelrahman Abdelaziz PGY-2 Delaware Psychiatric Residency Program, Tanvir Iqbal Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellow, Westchester Medical Center
As medical students, we spend years learning medicine and enhancing our knowledge with practice to become capable physicians. As young physicians it became conspicuous that health is not just determined by an individual’s genes or traits, but also by many social and political contributing factors that can affect patient lives. Examples of medical problems involving socioeconomic factors directly impacting health are tobacco, substance abuse, obesity, behavioral health, and nutrition. Political and governmental regulations on literacy, unemployment, pollution, immunization, and medical accessibility are definite influences on patient’s health and wellbeing. To what extent should they be civic-minded? Do physicians have a responsibility to advocate for public health problems and actively contribute to fixing loopholes in the society?
In this era, doctors need to participate in public roles, provide expertise to community organizations (e.g., school boards, hospital boards, and local media) and be politically involved in suggesting new healthcare laws.
In beginning to approach this, we have created our Residency Journal to publish all concerns highlighted previously and as a degree of social responsibility to get our voices heard. The opportunity to create a journal during residency is a great one!
You first need to have a chief editor and choose board members to determine the message of the journal, whether it is scientific, or a mix of science and public topics related to medicine.
Approval from your program director is mandatory and provides strength to the journal. We are very fortunate to have a very supportive Program Director. We have invited physician leaders, social commentators, and professional organizations for interviews as an attempt to start participating in medical, community, or advocacy activities. We interviewed the President of the ABPN, Dr. Larry Faulkner, who provided information about the future of maintenance of certification, residency training and funding for GME spots. We have also interviewed the President of the APA.
Creating a Residency Journal is a head start for all of the young physicians to express their opinions, problems they face, suggest solutions, and taking feedback from fellow physicians aiming to advance the services we provide.
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