Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Recap of Episode 203: The Human Journalist

This past Sunday, we were joined by Dr. Elissa Ely (below) -- a psychiatrist in Boston, MA and an accomplished journalist, contributing regular Op-Ed pieces to The New York Times and The Boston Globe. As she mentioned when we asked her about medical journalism, she considers herself not necessarily to be a medical journalist but to be a "human journalist." And as we spoke with her, it was easy to see what she meant!

Dr. Ely talked about the human interactions that can be so fleeting yet profound; these are interactions that underlie not just medicine but everyday life. She also discussed the concept of "caring too much" for a patient, as well as the options for physicians who themselves deal with psychiatric issues on their own. The podcast is now available at this link!

Also available on iTunes -- the first-ever Radio Rounds video! It is entitled "The Patient Perspective" and features an interview with Boonshoft School of Medicine student Casey McCluskey, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in May. The video is available as a free download on our iTunes page (link above). Casey describes her experience dealing with the diagnosis, as well as some inspiring stories involving her friends and family. The conversation is both touching and educational, and we're appreciative that Casey has been so willing to share her story with everyone. We encourage you to watch, as it is quite a moving story.

Up next: More information will be posted about this later in the week, but our guest for our next episode (this Sunday August 30, 12pm ET) will be Dr. Martin Makary, regular CNN medical correspondent and Chair of Gastrointestinal Surgery at Johns Hopkins.

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Meet the Hosts

Avash Kalra is a medical student at the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University. He is a 2005 graduate of Cornell University, where he majored in Psychology. Before starting medical school, Avash worked for one year at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore, Maryland, where he conducted research on lifespan extension. He then worked for one year as a clinical research coordinator in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Avash was born in England and lived there for 11 years. He spends his free time working as a staff writer for an NCAA hockey website. Over time, he has developed unhealthy obsessions with college hockey, poker, and the Dave Matthews Band. His favorite television shows include Lost, 24, Dexter, and Curb Your Enthusiasm. He is now an avid reader... of medical textbooks. He frequently points out that he has "the perfect face for radio." And -- as you'll discover -- he likes puns.

Lakshman Swamy is a medical student at the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University. He is a 2005 graduate of the College of Wooster in Wooster, OH, where he self-designed the Neuroscience major. Before joining medical school, Lakshman worked for two years in the Trapp lab at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation as a lab technician working with multiple sclerosis.

Lakshman is a young gentleman in the MD/MBA program at Wright State, and accordingly, his favorite character on Scrubs is Dr. Kelso. He has an eclectic taste in music, loves audiobooks -- especially mysteries -- and watches 24, M*A*S*H, and Battlestar Galactica. Yes, two of those shows have run their final season -- he is also constantly behind the times. He has NO idea what he wants to do with his life, but he is sure it will involve turning down the position of Surgeon General for bigger and better things.

Shamie Das is an MD/MBA dual degree student at the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University. He graduated from Emory University in 2004 as a dual major in Biology and Sociology. He went on to earn his Masters Degree in Public Health in 2007 from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. As a graduate student, he also performed bench research in Molecular and Cell Biology at the Emory University School of Medicine. In his free time during college, Shamie volunteered as an EMT-Intermediate and went on to become certified as a Paramedic.

Shamie was born in England and soon after moved to the US. In his free time he enjoys photography, traveling and fine cuisine. A few of his life goals are to visit every continent and climb Everest. An avid extremist, Shamie enjoys leaping out of perfectly good airplanes, white water rafting and jumping headfirst into gorges. Recently engaged, he also spends countless hours on the phone with his fiancée. His favorite authors include Hemingway, Frost, and Crichton (and of course Robbins). Television is a thing of the past in his current life, but occasionally he still watches PBS and listens to NPR and (of course) Radio Rounds.