medical student suicides article

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medical student suicides article

Post by redpill on Sun Oct 09, 2016 4:00 pm

for many families having their son or daughter attend medical school to become a future doctor is a dream come true

sadly there is a risk

today on yahoo news

Nathaniel Morris wrote:
Medical school can be brutal, and it’s making many of us suicidal

By Nathaniel Morris October 9 at 8:30 AM

In August, a medical student at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York jumped out of an eighth-story window to her death.

Stories like this are too common among budding doctors across the United States. In May, a medical student at the University of Southern California took his own life. At the University of California at San Diego, a third-year medical student killed himself last year. Two years ago, when I was a medical student at Harvard, a fellow student died of suicide.

We don’t have great data on how many of the nation’s 80,000 medical students take their own lives each year. Few studies have addressed the issue, with varying results. But suicide is a major issue for medical schools. In surveys, roughly 10 percent of medical students have reported having thoughts of killing themselves within the past year.

What drives these bright young people to take their own lives?

Research has found that students may arrive at medical school feeling less burnout and depression than other people of their age. Yet once in medical school, they go on to have greater risk of mental-health problems and suicidal thoughts. According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, medical students suffer from depression at rates 15 to 30 percent greater than the general population.

[How a young doctor’s fear of raising questions causes a big mistake]

Academic competition might explain these findings. Thousands of applicants compete for spots in these schools. In 2015, the average medical school accepted just 6.9 percent of applicants, according to U.S. News and World Report; Mayo Medical School had the lowest acceptance rate at 1.8 percent. By screening for the best and the brightest, these institutions can serve as breeding grounds for competition and feelings of inadequacy.

The academic burdens at these schools can be intense. Medical students must learn a startling amount of material in a short time. For example, in our anatomy class, my classmates and I had to dissect and learn the entire human body in a matter of weeks. A well-known saying is that “medical school is like drinking water from a fire hose.” Students grapple with high-volume workloads while studying for multiple rounds of national licensing exams and preparing applications to residency programs.

Outside the classroom, medical students face additional stressors. Entering clinical settings brings students face to face with sick and dying patients, often for the first time. Immersing oneself in human suffering each day can leave its mark. Medical students spend days and nights with patients who die of cancer, who lose limbs to amputation, who depend on ventilators to breathe, who will never walk again.

Rather than receiving support in these situations, these students often suffer humiliation from senior clinicians. Doctors work in a hierarchy, with attending physicians above residents, who are above interns. At the bottom of the totem pole are medical students.

[Pain kept this medical student from eating for 5 years. Doctors couldn’t figure out why]

This hierarchy engenders a culture of bullying toward medical trainees. More than 80 percent of medical students report mistreatment from supervisors. I’ve seen classmates shouted at, cursed at and mocked in clinical settings. A surgeon referred to me as “Helen Keller” because I couldn’t suture fast enough.

Money can also weigh heavily on the minds of medical students, who shoulder astounding debts to finance college and medical school. According to 2015 data, 81 percent of medical students reported academic debt at graduation, with an average indebtedness of more than $180,000.
Unrelenting pressure

Amid these unrelenting pressures, many medical students descend into despair. Some turn to suicide.

No suicide is the same, just as the causes of depression and despair vary from individual to individual. But with medical students, the shared stressors of medical school are undoubtedly a common thread. In recent years, these schools have taken steps to tackle this issue.

Reducing competition in the classroom may help. The majority of medical schools have embraced pass-fail grading systems for the first one to two years when students take classes, reforms shown to enhance well-being among students without affecting academic outcomes.

Team-based learning is another emerging trend in medical education. By encouraging collaboration, educators hope to increase cohesiveness among classmates and decrease social isolation while better preparing future doctors for team-based patient care.

[If health-care providers can’t overcome the stigma of mental illness, who will?]

Universities and hospitals

just a few days ago wrote:
Medical student's death ruled a suicide
By Jessica McDowell ・ 09/30/16 1:36pm

Second-year medical student Ari Frosch’s death on Sept. 22 was declared a suicide, The Sun Chronicle in Attleboro, Mass. reported this week.

Frosch was on a leave of absence at the time. He was 26 years old.

An investigation by local and state authorities in Massachusetts determined the cause of death, a spokesman for the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office told the Chronicle.

Students at the Perelman School of Medicine were alerted of Frosch’s death on Sept. 26 in an email from Vice Provost for University Life Valarie Swain-Cade McCoullum. The email was co-signed by Senior Vice Dean for Education at the Perelman School of Medicine and was sent on behalf of President Amy Gutmann and Provost Vincent Price.

“In sadness and with affectionate reflection, we write today to share that Ari Frosch, a second-year Medical student, died suddenly last week at home with family in Newton, Massachusetts,” the email said.

Frosch completed his undergraduate studies at Colorado College in 2012, and went on to work at Bryn Mawr College and the National Cancer Institute before enrolling at Penn.

so yeah, going to medical school to become a future doctor has a risk of your child committing suicide Suspect Suspect Suspect

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