|RPS/MSS Joint Newsletter October 2011|
In this issue:MSS Interview with a Fogarty Scholar
RPS Q&A with Valentina Vinante, MD, MPH
This Thanksgiving Make the Turkey a Side
WANTED: Practicum Rotation Descriptions!
MSS Interview with a Fogarty Scholar
By Hyun Ouk Hong, MS IV
This month, we interviewed a recent "Future Leader of Preventive Medicine” Award recipient and Fogarty Scholar, Daria Szkwarko. Daria is a fourth year medical student at UMDNJ - School of Osteopathic Medicine. She shares with us her experience as a Scholar, and gives advice on how you can apply as well!
What is the Fogarty Program?
The Fogarty International Clinical Research Scholars program is a one-year clinical research training experience for US students in the health professions in developing countries.
How did you pick your site?
I was particularly interested in implementing evidence-based guidelines to improve healthcare in low-resource settings. My mentor introduced me to the field of ‘operations research’. I was completely hooked. Fortunately, I matched with her site in Eldoret, Kenya at the Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare (AMPATH).
What aspects of preventive medicine did your project involve?
What was your most memorable experience?
What was it like to live and work in another country?
How can I apply for a Fogarty Scholarship?
RPS Q&A with Valentina Vinante, MD, MPH
Dr. Valentina Vinante is a visiting Resident physician from Italy. She has been studying Public Health and Preventive Medicine at the University of Florence in Italy. In 2010, she began collaborating with the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center in Derby, Connecticut, where she has been involved with grant writing, research activities and project development mostly focused on obesity prevention. Aside from Dr. Vinante’s research duties, she participates as member of the patient care team at the Integrative Medicine Center at Griffin Hospital and other primary care offices in the area. Her primary focus is nutrition, integrative medicine, women's health and strategies to support and implement behavior modification. She is passionate about classical music and Eastern philosophies. She enjoys yoga, skiing and being in nature.
Why did you choose Preventive Medicine as a career?
Preventive medicine means applying the education and philosophy of life that I’ve used throughout my life. I am lucky because I grew up in a very healthy family. Once, while I was jogging with my father, he said to me, "I may lose everything, but I will do everything not to lose my health. My investments in the future are this run, my food and the fact that I am not smoking….” My Grandpa, a super healthy 91 year-old-man, keeps the same mentality. He cycles for one and a half hours a day and keeps a very strict diet. With these kinds of examples how can I not believe and practice Preventive Medicine?
In addition, since starting medical school, one of my dreams has been to collaborate with the WHO. I came to see the factors determining the state of health of a person go far beyond the individual/person. I discovered in order to be a complete doctor I had to study public health in order to learn how to intervene on a larger scale and have a greater impact.
What are your future goals?
Why women’s health?
Which projects have you enjoyed working on the most?
Do you see any difference in between practicing preventive medicine in Italy and in the US?
Do you, as a preventive medicine physician, practice what you preach?
This Thanksgiving Make the Turkey a Side
There is nothing that better symbolizes a Thanksgiving meal than turkey. According to the turkey industry, between 80% and 95% of Americans consume this bird on the last Thursday in November each year. While we can’t be sure if turkey was really eaten at the first Thanksgiving, it has certainly been an important part of the tradition and American culture for at least 200 years.
The modern Turkey however, is a far different bird than the turkey Benjamin Franklin told his daughter would be a better symbol for America than the Bald Eagle. Today the majority of turkeys represent a single breed, the Broad Breasted White, which has been bred to have a small frame and large breasts. These birds grow very fast, reaching slaughter weight after only 14-18 weeks and have a taste best described by the word bland.
Ninety-nine percent of turkeys produced in this country never see the light of day, because they are raised in an industrial system.After their birth in a lab (due to their anatomical proportions, this breed can only reproduce by artificial insemination), the animals have their beaks and toes clipped and are transferred to a brooding house where they will live for about 6 to 8 weeks. From here they will go to one or two more similar houses where they will be fattened quickly on a diet of grains and medications.Their homes are long barns without windows, where there is a continuous flow of food, water, air, and artificial light.The birds stand all day on piles of litter and are packed tightly together. Like other industrial food animal production facilities, turkey farms represent a potential problem not only for the turkeys, but also for public health. The pollution and antibiotic resistant bacteria that may be produced on these farms can cause issues for the health of works, neighbors, and the environment.
Fortunately due to increasing awareness by the public about the practices of industrial agriculture, small farmers are starting to grow Heritage Breed Turkeys. These breeds, which have names like Bourbon Red and Narragansett, also have much more natural proportions and a much more interesting flavor than industrial birds.Typically heritage birds are raised outdoors in large fields where they can engage in more natural turkey behaviors like foraging. Heritage breed may take up to twice a long as factory birds to reach slaughter weight and cost more.
There are a number of websites from which you can order heritage breeds birds, but your best bet is to find a farmer at your local farmers market who is raising them. This way you can find out more about how the birds are raised and help support the local economy. It’s best to start looking early though, because these birds are often in limited supply.
While turkey is healthy lean meat filled with protein and important vitamins and minerals, I recommend making the vegetables the focus of your Thanksgiving meal and make the turkey a side. Focusing on dishes with super foods like mashed sweet potatoes (instead of mashed white potatoes), roasted cauliflower, raw tuscan kale salad, and roasted carrots will ensure a delicious and healthy meal.
For turkey recipes, I recommend this one from famed chef Daniel Boulud.
PLEASE REMEMBER, that even if your turkey has a "pop-up" temperature indicator, it is recommended that you also check the internal temperature of the turkey in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast with a food thermometer. The minimum internal temperature should reach 165 °F for safety.
WANTED: PRACTICUM ROTATION DESCRIPTIONS!!
Did you do an interesting rotation that improved your practicum year???
Did you do one that you thought was not as beneficial???
What about a global health experience???
WE WANT TO KNOW!!
Please send us a short description of your practicum rotation experiences (past, present, future) and your opinion of them (overall, was it useful or not; what can be done to improve the rotation; what did you like about it, etc). Don't forget to include details like the name of the site, name of your preceptor and their contact info, and whether or not you thought the experience was worthwhile (and why). Please do this in short paragraphs as we are just working on the basics for now, and send the descriptions by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your time and dedication to improving the Preventive Medicine residency experience is greatly appreciated!
JOIN US AT PREVENTIVE MEDICINE 2012!
If you had an interesting experience related to Preventive Medicine or would like to submit an article for the RPS-YPS-MSS Newsletter, please send an email to email@example.com.