ARAB TIMES, THURSDAY, AUGUST 23, 2012
Tobacco ad blitz
Do athletes make
NEW YORK, Aug 22, (Agencies): It may not be the first quality that most
medical residency programs evaluate in their applicants, but a new study sug-
gests past success in team sports could be the best indicator of how well a doc-
tor-in-training will do as a resident.
When residency programs evaluate medical school applicants for a few cov-
eted spots, they typically consider grades, standardized test scores, recom-
mendations and interviews.
But researchers from one head and neck specialty program found that a res-
ident having excelled in team sports was a more accurate predictor of success
in the program than any of those other factors.
The results were published Monday in the journal Archives of
Otolaryngology-Head & Neck
Residency programs are graduate Healthy eating
training after would-be doctors
receive medical degrees when they
work under the supervision of fully
licensed physicians. sway kids choice
WASHINGTON, Aug 22,
Lead researcher Dr. Richard (RTRS): Can Elmo make chil-
Chole from Washington University dren like apples?
School of Medicine in St. Louis said For children who turn up
he’d been “mystified” that appli- their noses at fruits and veg-
cants with great grades and medical etables, slapping a cartoon
school recommendations didn’t end face on a healthy snack may
up necessarily being the best doctors make those choices more
by the end of residency training. appealing, according to a US
But now, he said, it makes sense study.
that being part of a team helps pre- Researchers, whose find-
pare people for a career in medicine. ings appeared in the Archives
“There’s a lot more to being a of Pediatric and Adolescent
good doctor than answering multi- Medicine, discovered that
when elementary school stu- Syrian rebel fighters take fire from a helicopter in the Bustan Pasha neighborhood of Aleppo on Aug 21. A Syrian minister held out the prospect that embattled
ple-choice questions,” Chole told President Bashar al-Assad could leave power as part of a negotiated settlement to the increasingly ferocious conflict, while at least 128 people were killed nation-
Reuters Health. dents were offered apples
and cookies with lunch, chil- wide, among them 81 civilians, monitors said, reporting relentless shelling and fighting across swathes of the main battleground of Aleppo as well as around the
“In the operating room, it’s not capital. (AFP)
dren were more likely to opt
just a principal surgeon doing the for an apple when it was
surgery — it’s an anesthesiologist
and all the nurses,” he said. “Unless
branded with a cartoon stick- Diaspora doctors heed homeland calling on Aleppo frontline
er — such as one of the
a person is willing and able to work “Sesame Street” character
with a team, they don’t do well.”
Chole and co-author Dr. M.
Allison Ogden evaluated the original
applications of their last 46 residents
“If we’re trying to promote
healthier foods, we need to
be as smart as the compa-
Int’l team sets up field hospital
in the head and neck training pro- nies that are selling the less- PARIS, Aug 22, (Agencies): An interna- Bashar al-Assad’s regime has united not hold back their tears.
gram, comparing applicant qualities healthy foods,” said David tional team of doctors turned a villa Syrians far beyond national borders and “As Syrians from the outside, we did-
with faculty members’ assessments Just, co-director of the under construction in Syria into a secret while some have chosen to take up arms,
Cornell Center for Behavioral n’t see the full picture, how Syrians were
of who ended up being a good doc- field hospital, spending two months treat- Hazem and Ammar came with a ship- really living, how Assad was eating their
tor. Economics in Child Nutrition
Program, who worked on the ing wounded who sometimes traveled ment of first aid kits. food and drinking their water,” Ammar
There was no link between appli- two days for help, a small group of physi- After barely a week attached to the said.
cants’ scores on medical licensing study.
Noting that cartoon charac- cians said Tuesday upon their return. Free Syrian Army units fighting Assad “I have seen how big the atrocity real-
exams or their medical school rec- It took the doctors a week to transform loyalist forces in the northern city of
ters and flashy advertising ly is... We will need at least 15 years to
ommendation letters and the post- often don cookie and candy the home in northern Syria into a field Aleppo’s Saif al-Dawla area, the pair
residency assessments, the recover from this and for children the
packaging, he added, “The hospital, according to Medecins Sans have performed life-saving procedures trauma will last longer,” he said.
researchers reported. message should be: fight fire Frontieres, the aid group that sent the and experienced life-changing moments.
Interview scores from the applica- “But most of all, it’s the young men
with fire.” international team. “Sometimes it’s just a diagnosis or and women I’ve met here, they are fan-
tion process were “weakly correlat- Just and his colleagues “We could see and hear the shelling organising the work that can make a dif-
ed” with residency performance, as offered cookies and apples to tastic and so generous. They feed you
almost on a daily basis,” said Brian ference,” said Hazem, a trained doctor before touching their own food,” the 41-
were the rankings of applicants’ 208 eight- to 11-year-olds at Moller, an Australian anesthetic nurse on who has emergency experience from
medical schools. suburban and rural schools the team of seven foreigners and about 50 Manchester, after helping treat a young year-old father of two said, his voiced
Only students’ past “established every day at lunch for a Syrians. Moller said they made sure the fighter with a bullet wound to the leg. choked with emotion.
excellence in a team sport” — as week. Children were allowed Syrian government knew about them Freedom
opposed to mere proficiency in an to choose an apple, a cookie Intensified
or both, along with their nor- Consolata Melis, who will turn 105 without letting authorities know where “They have tasted freedom and they
athletic skill, or no sports experience the field hospital would operate. He is working from a mosque base-
— was clearly linked to faculty mal meal. tomorrow, poses with a World ment in Saif al-Dawla that has been are so determined now. Nothing will stop
Some days, the snacks Guinness certificate in her house in “They did not appreciate or like our them. It has made me so proud to be
members’ assessments. Perdasdefogu village on the island of presence,” Moller said. turned into a makeshift clinic since clash-
“Team sports are actually a very were offered without cartoon es intensified there earlier this month. Syrian. It has changed me so much.”
stickers or other branding. On Sardinia on Aug 21. The Melis family Katherine Holte, a Danish surgeon Asma, a 25-year-old Kuwaiti-born
telling thing. That’s what medicine is are officially the world’s oldest with nine who spent four weeks at the field hospi- When the fighting for control of
other days, either the cookie Syrian who has already served several
nowadays,” said Dr. Marvin Fried, or the apple was branded brothers and sisters clocking up a total tal, said conditions were growing Aleppo began last month, in what the
an otorhinolaryngologist from of 818 years between them. (AFP) increasingly dire in Syria, and nearly all regime itself vowed would be “the moth- months on the front line, sat on a plastic
with a familiar cartoon char-
Albert Einstein College of Medicine acter. her patients were victims of the fighting er of all battles”, much of the medical chair in the middle of the mosque-cum-
and Montefiore Medical Center in When the snacks weren’t — about 60 percent suffering from staff in Syria’s second city fled to safer clinic stroking the rim of her cup of tea.
the Bronx, New York. specially marked, 91 percent explosions and 40 percent from gunshot areas or left the country altogether. Wearing a bright white nurse’s blouse
“If they have achieved well as of children took a cookie and wounds. Hazem’s and Ammar’s project and white headscarf, she exuded a sense
team player, they tend to do the same just under one-quarter took “They live in fear every day,” she said. matured two months ago. of inner calm despite the din of a war-
as a professional physician,” Fried, an apple. “We knew medical practitioners had time clinic that echoed around her.
who wasn’t involved in the new But when an Elmo sticker Operations left and we could see on videos posted on “I came for the first time in 2011 and
study, told Reuters Health. was slapped on the apples, Holte said many patients used back YouTube that sometimes first aid was not came back in May. My honour was at
Chole said the results of the study 37 percent of children took roads to skirt checkpoints and other mili- given properly,” he explained. stake. I had to. Syria for me had become
have already changed the way he fruit, the researchers report- tary operations, taking as long as two “So we designed a very simple course like a mother who needed a daughter,”
and his colleagues evaluate appli- ed. days to travel 15 miles (24 kilometers). for people with no medical background
Stickers on cookies didn’t she said.
cants for their residency programs. Although small field hospitals are on how to deal with gunshot wounds, Already a keen cyber-activist before
Rather than focusing on test scores affect children’s choice of the sprouting up around Syria, she said few bleeding, fractures,” he said.
sweet snack. she came to Syria, she took part in sever-
and grades, he said they’re now Shanafelt Mjoernstedt have the resources of the one established They also prepared first aid kits for
“There are so many foods al demonstrations and then decided to
looking for evidence that a candidate that are of poor nutritional by the aid group, also known as Doctors members of the Free Syrian Army head- take first aid courses to make herself use-
has experience in something that quality and they are being without Borders. The hospital has about a ing to the front line. The bags include ful closer to the action.
requires teamwork, like a sport or a marketed to children,” said Health dozen beds, a sterilization room, an oper- essentials such as sterile dressing, trauma She spent days in the heart of the
musical group. Christina Roberto, who stud- ating room, an emergency resuscitation fix and splints.
“It’s disturbing really that the goal room and a recovery room. Holte said “We have already distributed 500 Salaheddin district with several other
ies food choices at the girls her age to volunteer in a similar
of most medical students is just to Harvard School of Public Docs struggle with burnout: Job other, cruder hospitals around the county bags,” first in rebel-controlled zones west
get great grades,” he said. Health in Boston and did not burnout strikes doctors more often than it learned about the villa and soon started of Aleppo and then inside the besieged clinic before the army muscled in and
The researchers are looking to take part in the study. does other employed people in the United sending their own patients. city itself, he said. forced everybody to relocate to neigh-
conduct a bigger study across more Kid-friendly characters States, according to a national survey that The French military sent its own team In a few days, Hazem and Ammar bouring Saif al-Dawla.
residency programs and possibly used for this marketing included more than 7,000 doctors. of doctors to the Syria-Jordan border ear- have already seen their share of violence “I always used to be scared of injec-
other disciplines, Chole added. The “aren’t popping up on the car- More than four in 10 US physicians said lier this month to set up a mobile hospi- and blood and developed strong friend- tions and couldn’t bear the sight of blood.
current research was “not a very rig- rots and apples as much as they were emotionally exhausted or felt a tal. ships. But there was nothing they could Now I can see everything,” she said.
orously done study; it was sort of ad they are on a wide range of high degree of cynicism, or “depersonaliza- Meanwhile, few days ago, Hazem left do for Abu Azzam, the young unit com- “Those nights under the shelling,
foods that aren’t good for tion,” toward their patients, said researchers his wife and 11-month-old son in mander who first welcomed them. sometimes in complete darkness... I felt a
hoc,” he said. whose findings appeared in the Archives of
What’s more, he said, his team’s kids,” she added. England and flew to Turkey with another When his body was brought to the deep connection with the people. I know
Internal Medicine. “The high rate of burnout
sample was skewed: all of the resi- has consequences not only for the individual Syrian-born doctor from Manchester to clinic, his face charred beyond recogni- what it is to be Syrian now,” Asma said.
dents were very good students to physicians, but also for the patients they are offer help on the front line in Aleppo. tion by a tank shell that struck him before “I will never go back to Kuwait. I have
begin with. It’s possible that if the disagree that plain packaging will caring for,” said Tait Shanafelt of the Mayo The struggle to topple President he could fire his RPG, the doctors could come home for the last time.”
study included medical students with work.” Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, who led the
much lower grades and test scores, BAT New Zealand general manag- research.
there would be a clearer difference er Steve Rush said plain packaging Previous studies have shown that burned- Other possible reasons include too much 20 think cancer is a contagious disease, cancer. It’s terrifying.”
in which ones went on to make good infringed on his company’s intellec- out doctors are more prone to thinking about paperwork, loss of professional autonomy according to a study by a Swedish charity Only a fraction of people (0.07 percent)
doctors based on those measures. tual property and set a dangerous suicide and to making medical errors than and a higher patient load to make up for supporting young patients published knew that drinking alochol is a risk factor in
Still, Chole said those limitations precedent that could eventually their peers, Shanafelt added. declining reimbursement rates. Wednesday. Ung Cancer found that 44 per- getting cancer, although 70 percent did
The survey included nearly 7,300 doctors “There is a sense that the volume of cent of young people thought that leukaemia know about the dangers of smoking.
don’t change the main message. spread to other products such as alco- patients that need to be seen is increasing could be transmitted via contact with some-
who filled in questionnaires about their The charity said it would “work to
“We really look at this as a combi- hol. and it’s taking away some of the time need- one’s blood. increase the level of knowledge.”
nation of being able to hold others “The branding on our packs has work-life balance in 2011.
Thirty-eight percent had high emotional ed to build a relationship and give the best “We didn’t think their knowledge would A total of 945 people across 13 high
accountable for what they do, hold- been created over many years and it care possible,” Shanafelt said. “That starts to be great but certain figures shocked us,” said schools were interviewed for the study.
ing yourself accountable and having belongs to us... the government exhaustion scores, which is akin to losing
enthusiasm for their job, according to build cynicism, I think.” (RTRS) Ung Cancer’s secretary general Julia (AFP)
others hold you accountable,” he shouldn’t be able to just take that Mjoernstedt.
Shanafelt. Thirty percent had high deperson- ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑
said. “Medicine is a team sport.” away,” he said, declining to reveal alization scores, which translates into view- “For example, only one percent knew that
❑ ❑ ❑ the budget for the campaign. ing patients more like objects than human 44 pct believe cancer contagious: a vaccine is available against the humnan UN warns over swine fever: The
Rush said there was no proof that beings, and 46 percent had at least one of the Nearly half of Swedes aged between 16 and papillomavirus which can cause cervical United Nations food agency on Tuesday
Tobacco: British American Toba- plain packaging reduced smoking two symptoms. warned that an outbreak of African swine
cco (BAT) launched an advertising and it could backfire by fuelling an Burnout was most common among doc- fever in Ukraine could pose a risk for ani-
campaign in New Zealand illegal market in tobacco products tors at the “frontline of care,” such as those mal health in the region as a whole despite
Wednesday opposing plans to intro- and forcing down prices. working in emergency rooms or in family swift moves to limit its spread.
duce plain packaging, in a move the “It’s unsound policy and potential- medicine. Dermatologists and preventive Kazakhstan, Latvia and Moldova “which
government immediately dismissed ly counterproductive,” he added. care specialists were less affected. have large pig populations raised on house-
as a waste of money. The researchers compared physicians hold or family farms and oftentimes weak
❑ ❑ ❑ biosecurity protocols are also now at high
New Zealand announced in-prin- with a random sample of 3,400 employed
ciple support for plain packaging in Reumofan: The US Food and Drug people who were not doctors. Based on a risk,” the Rome-based Food and Agriculture
April and has enthusiastically wel- Administration is warning consumers modified version of the original question- Organisation (FAO) said.
comed world-first legislation in not to use Reumofan dietary supple- naire, 38 percent of the doctors had burnout The FAO urged national and local author-
Australia forcing tobacco to be sold ments, after receiving reports of symptoms against 28 percent of the rest. ities to scale up their prevention measures
in drab, uniform packaging with bleeding, stroke and death among “The study advances our knowledge by, and be ready to respond in case of further
Americans taking the Mexico-manu- for the first time, comparing to the general outbreaks.
graphic health warnings. “This could be the first of more out-
However, the proposal will not be factured pills. population and showing that physicians are
at higher risk of burnout,” said James breaks to come according to our disease
formally adopted in New Zealand Reumofan Plus and Reumofan analyses,” Juan Lubroth, FAO’s chief veteri-
until the government finishes public Plus Premium are marketed as natu- Wright, chief surgeon at The Hospital for
Sick Children in Toronto. “It’s very clear nary officer, was quoted as saying.
consultations on the issue, prompt- ral remedies for arthritis and muscle African swine fever does not affect
pain, but the FDA says the products that when physicians are becoming burned-
ing BAT to launch an advertising out it begins to affect their relationships with humans but mortalities in domestic pigs can
blitz aimed at winning support for its actually contain several prescription other healthcare workers and with patient be extremely high and outbreaks are often
cause. drugs. families.” followed by mass culls.
The campaign — which includes A chemical analysis by the agency The new results come with some uncer- Some 300,000 pigs died or were culled
print, radio and television advertise- found that Reumofan Plus contains tainty, because only about a quarter of the due to outbreaks in Russia in 2011.
ments, along with a website agreed- three drugs, including the muscle doctors who received an invitation to partici- A man walks by a Boston Market restaurant on Aug 21, in Oakland, California. The disease, which was confined to
isagree.co.nz — has the slogan: “We relaxant methocarbomal and the anti- pate completed the survey. Restaurant chain Boston Market announced Tuesday that it plans to remove Africa and the Italian island of Sardinia
agree that tobacco is harmful. We inflammatory drug dexamethasone. It’s not clear why burnout strikes so many salt shakers from tables at all of its locations and will launch plans to reduce until a few years ago, is now endemic in
doctors, Shanafelt said, noting that excessive sodium levels by 20 percent in three popular foods - rotisserie chicken, maca- parts of Armenia, Georgia and Russia.
workloads are only part of the equation. roni and cheese and mashed potatoes. (AFP) (AFP)