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Sharing Experiences and Decreasing Isolation in Healthcare

Photo: Pexels

An article crossed both my inbox and my Facebook feed this week entitled “Here’s Why Women Doctors Need Time Together.” It certainly wasn’t an academic study, but, as a woman physician, I was intrigued by the title. One sentence summarizes the author’s major premise: “There is an amazing power in gathering, shared experiences and decreasing isolation.” And I agree. When I watch my kids play sports or perform, I gather with other parents who share that experience—and we cheer as loudly as we can. When my marriage needs refreshment, my husband and I gather with other couples who share the experiences, both joyful and difficult, of marriage—and the isolation of our challenges is decreased.

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Efficient Care & Spiritual Care: Can You Do Both?

Walt Larimore Image

It was bound to happen. And it did, on a Thursday morning. But let me give you some background first. My best friend and practice partner, John Hartman, MD, and I were seeing patients in our family medicine practice from, as they say, conception to cremation. We had been working to introduce a variety of simple spiritual interventions that allowed us to practice not just as healthcare professionals who were Christians, but as Christians who happened to be healthcare professionals.

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Gratitude Journals and Healthcare: How Can They Help?

Photo: Pexels

I am very much a can-do person—attacking the tasks in front of me with an astonishing willpower. We’re all like that, right? We wouldn’t have made it through medical school and residency otherwise! But when push comes to shove, I am not necessarily grateful or optimistic. I can tend toward the negative if left to my own human nature. In contrast, I know some people who just seem to have been born genetically positive and optimistic. They are resilient in the face of difficulty, always expect the best from every person or situation, and seem to have an easier time trusting God in their daily lives than I do. Maybe it’s just the outside appearance, but those positive people seem to enjoy life more than I often do.

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Facing Burnout in Healthcare

Photo credit: Francesc Padrós Casabella on Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC-SA

Excerpted from “Study: Doctor burnout may increase effect of biases on care,” UPI. January 13, 2016 — A national survey of doctors shows job burnout and personal bias have continued to increase in recent years, and researchers suggest the growth of both could affect the quality of care patients receive.

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From Physical Pain to Spiritual Healing

From Physical Pain to Spiritual Healing

Dentistry has been my passion since 8th grade. I became a Christian in high school and, like many, I grew in faith through the mentoring and prayers of friends and pastors. I have always believed God smiled on my life, and He has led me in some incredible ways.

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CMDA Dental Residency [+]

CMDA Dental Residency [+]

ogether, CMDA’s dental members are a diverse group of dental professionals and our experience spans the scope of dentistry: from a small solo practice to large group practices; from serving the wealthiest Americans to working amongst the poorest; and from short-term missions experience to a lifetime call to serve in the most remote areas of the world. We have dental faculty members including some of the top dental lectures in country, authors, military dentists, dentists involved in residency and advanced training programs and, of course, many dental students on campuses across the country.

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How Do I Know if I’m Gay or Not?

Photo: Pixabay

I’ve had the opportunity to have a number of young male patients, who during their teen years, have felt attracted to other guys and have begun to wonder if they might be homosexual. I think it’s very important to point out that it’s completely normal and extremely common to be attracted to other guys when you are a teen. In fact, most young men feel closer to other guys than they do girls.

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The Marriage Viewpoint

The Marriage Viewpoint

George MacDonald, mentor to C. S. Lewis, penned these words many years ago: “The highest calling of every husband and wife is to help each other to do the will of God.” While most of us would wholeheartedly agree, we struggle to apply this principle to the unique challenges of medical marriages. Few professions have the myriad of obstacles facing a vibrant marriage that a medical career brings. At the same time, medicine is a vocation with great potential benefits—both to the couple and the lives they touch—as God works through their union. How crucial it is for us to focus on helping each other be all God has intended for us to be as individuals and as a couple.

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Staying Connected to Today’s Medical Family

TCD Summer 2012

In some ways, things have radically changed since the “Leave it To Beaver” and “My Three Sons” concepts of the traditional family from the 1950s. Yet, in other ways, things have remained the same. Regardless, many challenges are being waged against the traditional American family today. With each passing day, the slow but steady advance of tangible threats grows. While some of these threats are easily recognizable, others seem to run under the radar as insidious characteristics of our culture that are eventually accepted as normative. These affect the medical family just as much as they do any other family.

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The Supernatural Joy of the Lord

Joy

This edition’s Impact Story is brought to you by Mike O’Callaghan, DDS, a CMDA dental member practicing in Michigan. Mike has led several GHO short-term mission trips and serves on the Dental Advisory Council. He recently published two articles: one was on the topic of short-term mission trips and other titled “Human trafficking and the Dental Professional” was seen in the most recent edition of the Journal of the American Dental Association. ADA members can view the article online here or in JADA print form.

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Mentored by a Milker of Cows

Photo: Pixabay

I knew I needed a mentor. I was busy with my career as a physician — too busy for my family. My priorities were out of whack. I needed someone who would encourage me and keep me on track. So I asked the pastors who came through the hospital, “Who’s the one layperson you know in this area who looks most like Jesus?.”

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Rest for Your Soul

TCD Winter 2011 2

It was a heavy burden to bear and my soul was weary. I was accused of malpractice in the death of a three-year-old child I had cared for in the emergency room of our local rural hospital. Although I felt confident I had handled the patient as well as anyone could have, I had not communicated very well with the family. The parents spoke little English and I had no time to explain what even I did not understand as we performed invasive tests which culminated in a code and resuscitation. I arranged a life flight to the referral center and the family rushed off into the night on a six-hour drive to the tertiary care center. Tragically and unexpectedly, the toddler deteriorated and died from a rare disease.

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The Divine Invitation

TCD Summer 2010

When I decided to become a doctor at eight years of age, it is because I believe I was called to do so. Now, twenty-four years later, I know it was a calling. It has to be. Under no circumstance would anyone follow this course unless it was due to a divine invitation. At least this is how I felt after a recently troublesome time in clinic when I learned the importance of praying for the children and families God has placed in my life.

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Physician as Employee: Is This What I Signed Up For?

TCD Fall 2008

Healthcare has changed dramatically over the past fifty years. Theories abound as to the various causes and their effects – with managed care, the Generation X work ethic, and increased numbers of women in medicine being three commonly cited reasons for the decline of the traditional “family doc” who made house-calls and whose work hours were 24/7 as needed and the steep increase in the “physician shift worker” who figuratively clocks in and out and leaves his pager behind when he is off duty. Managed care brought financial pressures to bear on physicians in solo practice. Generation X brought a tide of newly graduated physicians whose definition of balance was quite different from that of their parents’ generation.

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