APAMSA National Conference 2017 (and Pre-Med Day)

APAMSA is proud to announce that the 2017 National Conference will be held on October 7, 2017 at UCLA. The conference will feature a wide variety of speakers, workshops, panels, and experiences including healthcare leaders, physicians, researchers and executives.

A National Pre-Medical Student Day will be hosted the day after as part of the APAMSA National Conference on October 8th, 2017.

More information regarding registration for the National Conference and Pre-Med Day will soon be updated.

2017 National Board Retreat Presentations

Your representatives on the APAMSA National Board converged at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City for a very productive weekend of discussions on

  1. how we can increase involvement and programming for underrepresented AAPI groups and improve inclusivity
  2. how we can better respond to the needs of students like you at local chapters as identified by the monthly Chapter Captures
  3. how we can obtain new funding to allow chapters to conduct more health fairs (4) the upcoming national conference at UCLA.

Additionally, every national board member either presented or submitted a slide deck to update their activities so far and outlooks for the rest of the year. Below are the presentations.

2017 Region VII Conference Recap

On March 18th, 2017, the Region VII APAMSA Conference was held at the Phoenix Biomedical Campus. The conference was supported by the Navy, University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix, and the Asian Pacific Community in Action. Over 40 medical students, undergraduate students, and community members from throughout the region convened at the conference to learn, educate, and network.

The conference began with a keynote speech by Dr. Marvasti, Director of Public Health, Prevention and Health Promotion at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix, who spoke on the aging Asian American population and mental health. He was followed by a webcast presentation by Dr. Ho Luong Tran, Dr. Louie, and David Hawks of the National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physicians on “Screen at 23.” The afternoon was concluded with Dr. Chen, department chair for Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Mel & Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health at the University of Arizona and Chief Richard Fleming of the Navy. The afternoon consisted of a presentation by Dr. Kotecha of the Asian Pacific Community in Action and their Benefit Enrollment Center for Seniors, along with simulation events featuring BMI and blood pressure screenings, ultrasound, funduscopes, and suturing. Lastly, a social event was conducted in the evening at a local bar.

Thank you for everyone who attended!

Click here for the conference photo album.

Advice from APAMSA alumni for Match Day

We hope you’ll keep in touch and remember that wherever you go, your APAMSA family will always support you!
Former APAMSA National president Kevin Riutzel has some advice for your next few days:

Are you excited?? Nervous??? A mess????? You should be!!!! You’ve put so much time, money, and effort into trying to get to the next stage of this medical marathon, and it really is draining. However, take a moment to realize YOU’VE MADE IT THROUGH MEDICAL SCHOOL!!!!!!!! That is something you can always look back on and say, “Wow. I really can do anything.”

As you wait for the golden e-mail/notification that lets you know where you will live for the next 3+ years of your life, please go into match day satiated with knowledge that you will be a resident physician. Period. The match system can sometimes set people up for disappointment on match day should they not get their #1 pick. If you don’t get your #1 pick, great!! You still matched!!! Look forward to the fact that starting July, you will be making decisions as part of a team that can truly heal people – people who are looking to you for help and guidance at possibly their bleakest hour.

As part of the APAMSA family, please don’t ever hesitate to reach out to me for tips regarding intern year or if you just need a place to crash when you visit Disneyland. Again, congrats on all your hard work and stand proud of your achievements, doctor!!!!

Kevin Riutzel
Former National APAMSA President

***********************************************************************************************************************************************

Wherever you go and whatever you do, we wish you the best of luck!
Our former APAMSA National vice president would like to wish you all well:

Congratulations to you all for being done with interviews and submitting your rank lists! As you all mentally prepare for Match Day, I want you to know that even though you may not feel it right now, that everything that will happen on Match Day and after happens for a reason. I will admit at this time last year, I was feeling very nervous simply not knowing what to expect. I still vividly remember waking up on Match Day not knowing if I was going to be in the South, Northeast, West Coast, or Midwest for residency. But looking back on it almost one year later as I’ve had the chance to settle in and bond with my fellow residents, I realize that it was meant to be that I ended up at UMiami for residency even though I did not feel that way at the time. So my two cents to you all as you anxiously await Match Day is to keep your mind off of Match Day as much as possible; the rank list is in so do something you enjoy whether it’s going out for a run, watching Netflix or enjoying Mardi Gras (as a former NOLA resident) to keep your mind off of the rank list since you can’t change anything! Also just try to keep things in perspective, while it’s a big step, it’s not the end all of the world, residency will fly by fast and next thing you know you’ll be applying for fellowship or a job. And most importantly, please enjoy every moment of 4th year! As someone going through intern year, appreciate the free time and make the most of this time to pursue something out of your life bucket list–whether it’s traveling abroad or trying to run a marathon or doing a cross country road trip through every state, you won’t have this kind of time for quite awhile!

You all will do great and I truly wish you all the best in the next phase of your journey!

Robert Hsu
Former National APAMSA Vice President

***********************************************************************************************************************************************

It looks like you’re at the point in your career where you may be entering the Match this year! National APAMSA would like to pass on a message from an alumni that has been in your shoes –

Congratulations on entering the Match! It is a humbling and exciting time of your life and it feels like your entire life led up to this decision. Just remember, no matter where you go and what you do, you will have the honor of being part of many individual’s most vulnerable situations and have the chance to help make a difference. You will do great in any program as long as you open your arms and heart to everyone around you. Around this time last year, I felt a sense of calm after having gone through years of learning and sacrifices with tears and smiles. You will be happy, too. Remember to congratulate your friends, give people hugs, and smile: you’re going to be a doctor! Even if your parents may or may not understand, they are proud. You are amazing! Have a lovely Match Day and enjoy this once in a lifetime experience.

Warm regards,

Lindy Zhang, MD

Pediatric Resident, PGY-1
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
APAMSA Region I Director 2014-2015

APAMSA Global Health March Spotlight

Here is our first APAMSA Global Health Spotlight. For the month of March, we would like to feature our member, Taman Hoang, and her experiences with global health.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Tâm An Thị Hoàng, although I go by Taman. I was born in Saigon, Vietnam, and immigrated to the United States when I was four years old. I grew up with two distinctively different cultures: Vietnamese and American. Though my mother did incorporate some “American” ideas into my upbringing, she always insisted that I remain true to my roots. It was for that reason that I went back to Vietnam in my teenage years to volunteer and to explore my origins. My travels to Vietnam inspired other trips to different parts of the world, from Panama to Nepal and sparked my interest in global health. After I graduated from UC Berkeley, I then pursued an MS in Global Medicine at USC where I was given the chance to go abroad to Panama and work in acute primary care clinics for the indigenous populations there. Shortly after, I was accepted into UC Davis School of Medicine. Before I began medical school, I had the honor of being accepted into the 2015 Good Samaritan Medical and Dental Ministry (GSMDM) cohort and was able to revisit my homeland. I felt I had come full circle, because it was one of my initial trips to Vietnam that drove my desire to go into medicine. I am currently a second year medical student at UCDSOM and have continued my love for global medicine by being on the Nepal 2016 team that journeyed to Kathmandu and some of the remote mountainous villages of Nepal last June.

Can you tell us more about your experience in Cao Bang, Vietnam? How did you find out about this opportunity?
Word of mouth was how I came to join the 2015 GSMDM group. A good friend of mine, Donna Tran, did a GSMDM mission a few years back, and it was through her encouragement and amazing stories that spurred me to apply.

How were you able to fund your trip?
At the time that I applied and accepted into the cohort, I had several tutoring jobs. I worked during the week and many weekends, while scheduling around our fundraisers for the mission. While it was a challenge to save money for the trip and pay my current living expenses, being able to fund myself taught me a lot about time management and how to be just a bit more frugal with my spending.

What was one specific experience during your trip that really stuck with you?
I was in Cao Bang, Vietnam when I met Linh with her bright yellow t-shirt, and her brighter smile. Cao Bang is a northern region of Vietnam that is isolated by mountains. Like many other rural regions of Vietnam, there was a severe shortage of doctors in the area. I had been taking patient histories for GSMDM (Good Samaritan Medical and Dental Ministry) when she entered our mobile clinic and took her turn in the seat across from me. She was twenty-four years old, and blind. Linh had wanted to be a teacher before she lost her sight due to a brain tumor that was removed too late. During our patient interview, I remarked that she had a lovely smile. “Thank you. I believe that my smile reflects how I’ve chosen to look at life,” was her response. Patients like Linh are the reason that I have chosen to pursue a career in primary health care.

What was the most difficult part of your trip?
One of the most heartbreaking things about any medical mission is that you cannot help everyone. There are cases that will always break your heart, and it was the forced acceptance of this that was difficult. Like in the case of Linh, there was nothing more we could do for her. But I think the reality of these missions is that it is not about what you can give to the people of this or that country, but what you learn from them by being there. Every time I go on these medical missions, I always feel like I should have given more, and at the same time, I feel like I received so much more than what I did give. I get the privilege of listening to these people’s stories and carrying with me as I go onward in my journey in medicine, and no matter how difficult it is to listen to some of their stories and realize that you can’t save everyone—every heartbreak is still worth the trip.

What draws you to Global Health?
The multidimensional aspect of global health is one of my favorite aspects of this field of medicine. Global health is all about making connections and learning from one another. In particular, I enjoy seeing different health systems all over the world and the cultural and socioeconomic factors that affect health in different countries.

Do you have any advice for other students interested in Global Health?
You learn in Global Health that healthcare is truly interdisciplinary. When you immerse yourself in it, don’t view it from the lens of a hierarchy. No one person runs the show, but everything about it is a team effort and a systems based approach. Learn about other professions and see what their impact may be on health and health delivery. And always, be humble and open to input and ideals from a wide spectrum of professionals.