January 30, 2004

National student medical association meeting to be held at Vanderbilt

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Dr. Christopher D. Lind, associate professor of Medicine in the division of Gastroenterology, holds the the new pH level monitoring device which is attached to a patient’s esophagus. Photo by Dana Johnson

National student medical association meeting to be held at Vanderbilt

Medical students from across the country are coming to Vanderbilt University School of Medicine today to attend the Region IV American Medical Association-Medical Student Section (AMA-MSS), hosted by the Vanderbilt chapter of the AMA-MSS.

About 85 medical students from Vanderbilt will join 120 students from 15 medical schools in six states at the two-day southeastern regional meeting, titled “Medicine and Global Health.”

The conference includes a Friday night banquet, regional AMA-MSS business on Saturday in 208 Light Hall, and talks given by Vanderbilt faculty Drs. John Tarpley, professor of Surgery and Mark Denison, associate professor of Pediatrics and Infectious Diseases, and Carol Etherington, assistant professor of Nursing. Students may also have the opportunity to tour the new Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital on Saturday afternoon.

The AMA-MSS gives students a chance to participate in policy formation and implementation, organize community service projects, and join in advocacy efforts including physician rights, medical student affairs and patient issues.

Attendees include AMA-MSS Governing Council Chair Joe McDonald from the University of Kansas, AMA-MSS Region IV Chair Chad McCall from the University of North Carolina and Region IV advisor Dr. Gerold Schiebler, chairman emeritus of the Department of Pediatrics from the University of Florida.

“We’re very excited about hosting this event, and about the topic we’ll be discussing,” said Brian Gray, a second-year medical student and officer in the Vanderbilt chapter of AMA-MSS. “Medical students as a whole are more aware these days of the world around them. We understand that there are people at home who need our help, but there are also people all around the world who also need us. This awareness will also help us treat patients at home, in Nashville, for example, where the Hispanic population is exploding. It’s important for medical students to know about global health so when we treat patients from other countries, we can treat them with knowledge.”

Gray said the conference is also good exposure for Vanderbilt. “It’s an opportunity for students at other schools, who might be considering Vanderbilt for a residency application, to see what we have here.”