Tuesday, March 13, 2018

AAMC and UCSF release report about medical students and physicians with disabilities

AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) and the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine (UCSF) released a first-of-its-kind publication that explores the current state of medical education for medical students and physicians with disabilities.

Accessibility, Inclusion, and Action in Medical Education: Lived Experiences of Learners and Physicians With Disabilities is designed to increase awareness and understanding of the challenges and opportunities for individuals with disabilities at the nation’s medical schools and teaching hospitals.

Coauthored by Lisa Meeks, PhD, University of Michigan Medical School and Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, and Neera R. Jain, MS, CRC, policy advisor for the Coalition for Disability Access in Health Science and Medical Education, the report describes practices that can foster a positive culture around disability. One key step is provideing ongoing professional development for faculty on how to communicate with and about people with disabilities.

Learn more about this report here.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Prevalence of Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Surgeons and Interventionalists

Published in JAMA Surgery:

Prevalence of Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Surgeons and Interventionalists

Physicians in procedural specialties are at high risk for work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). This has been called "an impending epidemic" in the context of the looming workforce shortage; however, prevalence estimates vary by study.

To estimate the prevalence of work-related MSDs among at-risk physicians and to evaluate the scope of preventive efforts.

Career prevalence of injuries and 12-month prevalence of pain.

Among 21 articles (5828 physicians [mean age, 46.0 years; 78.5% male; 12.8 years in practice; 14.4 hours performing procedures per week]) included in this systematic review and meta-analysis, pooled crude prevalence estimates of the most common work-related MSDs were degenerative cervical spine disease in 17% (457 of 2406 physicians) (95% CI, 12%-25%), rotator cuff pathology in 18% (300 of 1513 physicians) (95% CI, 13%-25%), degenerative lumbar spine disease in 19% (544 of 2449 physicians) (95% CI, 5%-16%), and carpal tunnel syndrome in 9% (256 of 2449 physicians) (95% CI, 5%-16%). From 1997 to 2015, the prevalence of degenerative cervical spine disease and degenerative lumbar spine disease increased by 18.3% and 27%, respectively. Pooled prevalence estimates for pain ranged from 35% to 60% and differed by assessment instrument. Of those with a work-related MSD, 12% (277 of 2319 physicians) (95% CI, 7%-18%) required a leave of absence, practice restriction or modification, or early retirement. Heterogeneity was considerable for all crude analyses (mean I2 = 93.5%) but was lower for sensitivity analyses (mean I2 = 72.3%). Interventions focused on products and behaviors. Twelve at-risk specialties described a gross lack of awareness and an unmet need for ergonomics education.

Prevalence estimates of work-related MSDs among at-risk physicians appear to be high. Further research is needed to develop and validate an evidence-based applied ergonomics program aimed at preventing these disorders in this population.

Epstein S, Sparer EH, Tran BN, Ruan QZ, Dennerlein JT, Singhal D, Lee BT. Prevalence of Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Surgeons and Interventionalists: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. JAMA Surg. 2018 Feb 21;153(2):e174947. doi: 10.1001/jamasurg.2017.4947. Epub 2018 Feb 21. PubMed PMID: 29282463.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Join the campaign #DocsWithDisabilities

The University of Michigan Department of Family Medicine is developing a campaign to raise awareness about the number of practicing #docswithdisabilities in medicine via a social media campaign on Twitter and Instagram.

The campaign will highlight various DWD (Docs with Disabilities) by name and photo.

We invite you to join the campaign by contributing your story, normalizing the inclusion of DWD in the physician workforce.

Using submitted photos and stories, they will create an infographic, integrating the hashtag #DocsWithDisabilities with your featured photo, quote, and short bio.

The campaign will kick off the first week of January and continue until the end of May 2018.

Submit your story by Dec 31 at: bit.ly/docswithdisabilitiessubmit

Friday, July 14, 2017

NYT: Doctors with Disabilities - Why They're Important

Don't miss this New York Times story published on July 11, 2017 titled, "Doctors with Disabilities: Why They're Important." The story, written by Dr. Dhruv Khullar, mentions a few physicians who have disabilities:

Dr. Gregory Snyder, a physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston who uses a wheelchair

Dr. C. Lee Cohen, a resident at Massachusetts General Hospital who has partial hearing loss in both ears and uses an amplified stethoscope

The article discusses the importance of a diverse work force. Patients of various backgrounds may feel more comfortable when they have physicians who are like them. Physicians with disabilities may be able to relate on a different level with certain patients.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Disability Among US Medical Students

Be sure to read the December 6, 2016 JAMA article titled:

Prevalence of Self-disclosed Disability Among Medical Students in US Allopathic Medical Schools
by Lisa M. Meeks, PhD; Kurt R. Herzer, PhD, MSc

From December 2014 through February 2016, an electronic, web-based survey was sent to institutionally designated disability administrators at eligible allopathic medical schools who have a federally mandated duty to assist qualified students with disabilities. Eligible schools were identified through a registry maintained by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

Respondents identified 1547 students with disabilities (43.3% male), representing 2.7% of the total enrollment and ranging from 0% to 12%. Of these students, 97.7% received accommodations.

ADHD was the most common disability (33.7%), followed by learning disabilities (21.5%) and psychological disabilities (20.0%). Mobility and sensory disabilities were less common.

Meeks LM, Herzer KR. Prevalence of Self-disclosed Disability Among Medical Students in US Allopathic Medical Schools. JAMA. 2016;316(21):2271-2272. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.10544

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