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Residency IM, Pathophysiology, Indian


As I write this, I think back on how thousands of miles from everything I ever knew in India, the little boy I once was, growing up on a farm in rural India and the events that placed my feet irrevocably onto the path of Medicine.  When I was just 13 years old, I remember my mother suffering a bad fever.  I watched on as my father attended to her as best he could, but it was clear we needed to go to the hospital, where she was admitted, diagnosed with malaria.  I quizzed my mother’s doctor mercilessly, what is malaria?  How can a mosquito cause a fever?  In the end, he simply said, in order to understand the fever, you must become a doctor.  With that, I determined my future must be in Medicine.  I had to know, unravel the mysteries, and find the answers to my endless questions.

And, indeed in medical school, my questions were answered, only to be replaced with countless more.  How do our organs work?  Yes, blood circulates, but how does urine form?  Biochemistry answered my questions of how energy is made in our body, but how do our organs and cells interact and function in what we call “normal life”?  Anatomy opened my eyes to the wonders of our structure, while para-clinical and clinical subjects, while I did not know the term then, brought me ever closer to the specialty of Internal Medicine.

When at last I gained direct-patient exposure, I felt a fire within me kindle, a passion for helping others, treating patients, and learning about the seemingly endless number of diseases and conditions.  Studying diseases was an outlet for my innate curiosity, pursuing knowledge of how diseases occur, why they occur, how they unfold and most importantly, how we treat for them.  My desire for patient contact only increased with each day.

I was first introduced to Internal Medicine during my internship rotations.  I was fascinated by the sheer diversity of cases and the amount of direct patient contact.  The approach of dealing with the patient as a totality struck me as being sensible, logical, and, as a result, Internal Medicine became the field in which I wanted to explore in greater depth.  Throughout my education, I steadfastly believed that a good physician must be committed to excellence in all aspects of healthcare, be it medical education, patient care or research.  And what greater satisfaction in my career could I have than to be the primary medical caregiver to a patient, as an Internist?

My desire to enter into a quality and challenging Internal Medicine residency stems from my intense interest in pathophysiology, clinical medicine and my understanding of the need to educate patients about their issues.  Coming to America was a decision based on wanting the finest advanced medical training in advanced patient care possible.  The US is known for its numerous superior modalities used to facilitate the diagnosis and management of disease.  Furthermore, only a US medical residency could offer me the level of exposure to a broad spectrum of patients, and medical knowledge that I will need to bring my goals, ambitions, and dreams to reality.  I once left my village to pursue education beyond seventh grade.  With every step beyond my village, I have grown ten-fold, maturing and growing all the more determined to succeed at all costs.

A medical residency in Internal Medicine will also expose me to opportunities to conduct research into specific areas, particularly the chance to continue research work I started in India.  Specifically, I am particularly interested in doing research in the areas of multiple indicator cluster surveys, gathering and analyzing data such as how many children <1 year old, 1-5 year old, what their immunization status is, any pregnant women, and  determining if iodized salt was being used or not. 

I require a challenging residency program, giving me ample exposure to a greater diversity of cases than in lighter programs, not just in terms of pathology, but also ethnicity and socio-economically, in an atmosphere of learning that emphasizes teaching and clinical research.  It is understood that what one takes away from a residency assignment is key to the type of practice you are aiming for.  I will need an excellent grounding and this being said, I am looking to pursue exposure to as many advanced cases as possible.  Therefore, I want to expand my realm of understanding and exposure to opportunities to learn about community medicine, family counseling, healthcare policy and community education. And yet, all of this sounds so clinical compared to what I am truly seeking, which is a learning environment in which people enjoy their everyday work, are supportive of each other, dedicated to making a difference in their community, and camaraderie is emphasized and practiced as a matter of course.

 

Anyone conducting a medical residency aspires to be a better medical professional, and to help people.  Internal Medicine though is a branch of Medicine that requires an excellent base of knowledge coupled with excellent analytical skills.  Solidifying these skills as well as conducting research, increasing my existing grasp of preventative medicine and disease control are all goals of mine.  Contributing to the community as well as the extended medical and research community are all necessary if our collective goals are to be achieved.  In terms of my future in medicine, I anticipate serving as a specialist in a community hospital, but wherever I go, it must be where I can do the greatest amount of good works, increasing the amelioration of lives.  I think of my many colleagues, who speak of their long-term goals.  For me, I see within my own future the lifetime pursuit of intellectual challenges, the intrinsic interpersonal rewards that accompany work in the medical field, all within the framework of public service.

I bring with me to my Internal Medicine residency assignment a solid academic foundation in Medicine coupled with my desire, strong work ethic, and as a mature healthcare professional, the ability to handle just about any situation, emotionally, psychologically and physically.  What is more, I bring my humility, earned through active volunteerism with India’s national Pulse Polio Program.  The work involved going house to house, giving polio vaccines to children under five, as well as conducting physical examinations, referring people to the hospital for a number of ailments.  I was left truly moved by the suffering I saw in my community, but all the more resolved to not wonder who would bring about positive, sustainable change.  I was that someone and I knew how to go about helping others.  I am no stranger to research work, either, and have conducted research through our community medical department, specifically, multiple indicator cluster surveys as explained above.

The US healthcare is only increasing its representation of diverse patients.  The need for multilingual healthcare professionals has never been greater and will only increase.  To meet this need, I speak three languages fluently, and will be able to reach out to my patients in their arterial language, increasing the accuracy of treatment as well as my patients’ involvement in the healing process.  As a Gujarati, I am a minority, and this combined with my immigrant experience makes me more sensitive to the unique needs of our culturally diverse patients.  This is of special importance in our field, and makes our patients more comfortable and secure with their treatment, increasing the all important level of trust in the doctor-patient relationship.

Finally, I would like to say that all experiences in my life have imbibed determination, truthfulness, positive attitude and a caring nature as a part of my character. As I look towards Internal Medicine, I believe these characteristics will help me in achieve my successes. I am extremely passionate about my profession and I assure you that I will bring forth the motivation, dedication, and will utilize all the skills I have acquired in the past to earn respect and confidence in your program as well as the patients whom I will care for.

Thank you for your time and kind consideration.

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