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Medicine in Contemporary Society Selectives

Course Goals

MCS Selectives give students an opportunity to expand their knowledge of ethical, social, cultural, and humanistic issues in medicine in a manner reflective of their own career choices and particular interests. MCS focuses on mastery of knowledge and attitudes related especially to the following core competencies: professionalism and ethics, communication, self-awareness, social context of medical care, and health care systems.

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Index of Selectives for 2017
  1. Becoming a Better MD Through Poetry - Astonished Harvest
  2. Children and Ethics
  3. Core Concepts in Geriatrics
  4. Decision Making in the ICU
  5. The Doctor Patient Relationship
  6. Treated Differently: Bias, Healthcare Disparities, and the Practice of Medicine
  7. Health Care Economics
  8. Telehealth: Docs, Data, and Disruptive Technologies
  9. Hospice as Palliative Care
  10.   Implications of Antenatal Testing
  11.   Anatomy of Law for Physicians
  12.   Pain, Drugs, and Ethics
  13.   Sociology of Medicine
  14.   Spirituality and Healthcare
  15.   The Ethics of Hope
  16.   Mind Body Medicine
  17.   Theater and the Experience of Illness
  18.   Quality and Safety in Medicine
Descriptions and Syllabi

Course Title: Becoming a Better MD Through Poetry - Astonished Harvest
Faculty:  Jack Coulehan, MD , Richard Bronson, MD , Maria Basile, MD
John.Coulehan@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Richard.Bronson@stonybrookmedicine.edu
clinical.integration@gmail.com
Syllabus
Description
By the study of poetry as it relates to the medical experience, we hope to uncover a closer type of critical reading (attention), an ability for a caregiver to understand and convey the needs and context of a patient (representation), and an appreciation of the common concerns of the healing professions and to explore the use of poetry by some physicians to inform their medical practice (affiliation). Note: This course requires time commitment outside the class day. Attendance at four Monday evening meetings of the group are required. See the syllabus.


Course Title: Children and Ethics
Faculty: Laura Monahan, MD
Laura.Monahan@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
Much of the discourse in contemporary medical ethics focuses on the relationship of mature and autonomous patients to their physicians. The world of children as patients is therefore a unique world since these youngest patients have limited ability for self-determination and limited legal status as minors. Those who specialize in the treatment of neonates, children, and adolescents find themselves in a ethically and legally complicated world in which the treatment of a patient as a person is a uniquely challenging ideal.


Course Title: Core Concepts in Geriatrics
Faculty: Lisa Strano-Paul, MD and Peter D. Kuemmel, MD
Lisa.Strano-Paul@stonybrookmedicine.edu and  Peter.Kuemmel@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description
Americans are aging and the number of people over the age of 65 will double over the next 25 years. Future doctors will require an enhanced understanding of the special needs of this age group. This course will provide students with a broad introduction to the field of geriatrics. Note: This course meets in the 3 to 5 pm time block


Course Title: Decision Making in the ICU
Faculty: Margaret Parker, MD
Margaret.Parker@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description Decision Making in the ICU will be a seminar series for students who want to explore this topic through reading, discussion, class presentation and writing exercises. Topics include the use of critical care resources, setting goals of critical care intervention, communication about goals of care, and the costs of critical care. Appropriate for students interested in health care policy, critical care medicine (medical, surgical, pediatric, neurologic), geriatrics, end of life care, health care resource management. Note: One of the class sessions will be rescheduled.


Course Title: The Doctor Patient Relationship as a Tool in Primary Care
Faculty:  Jeffrey Trilling, MD
Jeffrey.Trilling@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
Within the context of primary care, there are acute, short-term illnesses, much of it transient and self-limiting, and a high prevalence of chronic illnesses and behavioral problems. All of these circumstances require a broadening of context from a biomedical to that of a biopsychosocial approach to medical problem-solving that heavily relies on a well-nurtured, healthy patient-doctor relationship.


Course Title: Treated Differently: Bias, Healthcare Disparities and the Practice of Medicine
Faculty:  Phyllis Migdal, MD
phyllis.migdal@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
Disparity in health and healthcare leads to worsening health status in vulnerable populations. Health disparity is described as differences in health status that is unfair, avoidable, and unjust. This course will discuss factors that contribute to health disparity with particular attention to implicit bias within providers and its impact on treatment decisions and health outcomes.  The association of allostatic load and health will also be examined.


Course Title: Health Care Economics
Faculty:  Alan S. Cooper
Alan.Cooper@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description
This course will review the history of healthcare insurance in the United States, focusing on the problems of high costs and inadequate coverage. The course will then discuss how the new healthcare law addresses these problems, its prospects for success, and how the rapid changes may affect the medical student’s career goals.


Course Title: Telehealth: Docs, Data, and Disruptive Technologies
Faculty: Kimberly Noel, MD MPH
Kimberly.Noel@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
In the era of disruptive technologies in healthcare, clinicians will reach a new frontier in medical practice. With more data, technology and medical literature than ever before, how will the physicians role adapt to the changing environment of the greatest reforms in healthcare? This selective will serve to introduce the topics of telehealth and telemedicine and discuss the advances in field as well as the laws, ethics, regulations and the evolving doctor-patient relationship. The course will aim to review the applications of telemedicine and future implications to the practice of medicine.


Course Title: Hospice as Palliative Care
Faculty: Kathy Van Steen
liveluvyoga@gmail.com
Syllabus
Description
This selective will present the role of hospice in the terminal care of the dying. As palliative care, hospice offers a method of care that is becoming more mainstream medicine, as it had been in the early days of medicine.


Course Title: Implications of Antenatal Testing
Faculty: Christina Kocis
christina.kocis@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description
The goal of this course is to familiarize the student with the common antenatal screening tests which are offered to prenatal patients and to identify their many implications for women and society. A field trip will be assigned for the purpose of observing an actual antenatal test including the patient/provider communication and interactions that result.


Course Title: The Anatomy of Law for Physicians
Faculty:  Julie Agris, PhD, JD, LLM
Julie.Agris@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description
Anatomy of Law for Physicians is a brief introduction to select topics of interest to physicians, including the formation of the physician-patient relationship, regulation and liability related to this unique relationship and the status of issues related to finance and reimbursement in the age of health reform.


Course Title: Pain, Drugs, and Ethics
Faculty: Kevin Zacharoff 
kevin.zacharoff@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
Pain is one of the most common reasons that people seek medical attention in the United States today. Since 2000 it has been considered to be the "Fifth Vital Sign." For physicians the management and control of pain poses many ethical problems. Among these this course will consider the increased prescribing of opioid medications for patients with chronic pain, along with abuse, misuse, and addiction related to these medications. We will also examine the special issues of terminal sedation, physician assisted suicide, the legal and ethical issues involved in assisting people with intractable pain, and the special issues of children and minors.


Course Title: Sociology of Medicine
Faculty:  Van McCrary, JD PhD
Stephen.McCrary@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
Sociology is a social science that uses systematic methods of qualitative and quantitative investigation, and critical analysis, to develop a body of knowledge about human social structure and activity, often with the goal of applying such knowledge to improve social welfare. This Selective will explore selected topics in sociology of medicine.


Course Title: Spirituality and Healthcare
Faculty: Michael Vetrano
Michael.Vetrano@stonybrook.edu
Syllabus
Description
Illness is a powerful spiritual experience for patients and their physicians and that both physicians and patients can experience spiritual growth in the partnership of healing. This selective will address some of the most important questions in spirituality and healing: How physicians can assess the spiritual resources of their patients? What do physicians need to know about theology and spirituality to effectively care for their patients? What role does the spirituality of the physician play in the healing of the patient? What spiritual skills can physicians use to speak more honestly with patients about death and dying?


Course Title: The Clinical Ethics of Hope
Faculty: Stephen Post, PhD  & Brooke Ellison, PhD
stephen.post@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description
From the early 19th century American Codes of Medical Ethics have emphasized the physician’s responsibility to sustain hope in patients. This is a perennial aspect of the “art of medicine.” Thomas Percival famously described the physician as “minister of hope and comfort to the sick.” Hope is variously defined, but seems to pertain to a confidence in future events and circumstances. What are the characteristics of hope? Is it different than optimism? What is it and how does it impact health, well-being, and even the will to live? How do patients gain, sustain, or lose hope? Is hope rooted in community, spirituality, evolved cognitive structures, environment, past experience, etc.? How should physicians cultivate hope in their patients? What is the relationship between hope and truth telling? How can hope be redirected effectively? Is there a biology of hope and of despair that impacts health outcomes?


Course Title: Mind Body Medicine: Facilitating Patient and Physician Wellness
Faculty: Maria Basile, MD
clinical.integration@gmail.com
Syllabus
Description
Medi” in medication and meditation comes from the same root, meaning in the middle, or in other words, centered or balanced. How can physicians create balance in their lives, and in the lives of their patients? Mind-body medicine serves as a mechanism to achieve this goal. Mind-body medicine is based on the knowledge that disease manifestation is not purely created through physiologic imbalance, but is also influenced by one’s thoughts and emotions. How does this knowledge affect the way that medicine is practiced today? What exactly is mind-body medicine and how does it relate to stress and burnout? And how can physicians use mind body awareness and techniques to help not only their patients, but also themselves?


Course Title: Theater and the Experience of Illness
Faculty: Guy Glass, MD
gfgmd@aol.com
Syllabus
Description:
What is it like to be another person? We as physicians may take our cue from actors, who, when preparing for a role, step into the shoes of their character. Aristotle (in his Poetics of c. 335 B.C.E.) first observed how the plays that hold our attention are the ones that allow us to identify with the very human flaws and weaknesses of their characters. Later, during the 18th century Enlightenment, Schiller explored the potential of theater to help us learn to be tolerant of others, including those who are suffering. Contemporary theater is filled with depictions of illness that can both entertain and educate. In short, theater provides a wonderful way to understand the human condition that is more real than any textbook.


Course Title: Quality and Safety in Medicine
Faculty: Jean Mueller
Jean.Mueller@stonybrookmedicine.edu
Syllabus
Description:
This Selective will examine Patient Safety and Quality Improvement strategies and evaluation techniques that can improve performance and outcome measures in the delivery of health care services throughout the continuum of care.

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