Associate Dean

Are physicians “leaders”? Put another way, is “leadership” a necessary or even desirable attribute of the aspiring or practicing medical doctor? The recent revision of the competency framework of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, and specifically the proposal to change the “Manager” competency to “Leader” has sparked some interesting conversation on this issue. The root of this controversy … Continue reading

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For medical students in Canada, there are three days in the course of their career that stand out above all others: the day they receive their letter of acceptance to medical school; convocation (when they officially become graduate physicians); and Match Day. The most emotionally charged by far, is Match Day. For those of you not familiar, Match Day is … Continue reading

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Medical Grand Rounds are a longstanding (dare I say, traditional) feature of the academic medical centre.  In fact, their durability and continuing appeal might be considered somewhat perplexing in an age of increasing, almost frantic, busy-ness, and easy access to medical information and prepared presentations ready for review at our convenience.  Here at Queen’s, they have become rejuvenated and are … Continue reading

We all need role models. These are people who guide us through our lives by helping us understand the type of people we aspire to become. They may do so by providing wisdom or advice, but mostly they guide by the example of the lives they live. They are precious to us, and particularly so for those aspiring to a … Continue reading

A patient reports to a hospital outpatient procedure unit early one morning for an electively planned, medically necessary surgical procedure. They divulge personal and sensitive information to a clerk. They disrobe at the request of a registered nurse. They allow a phlebotomist to start an intravenous line in their arm. They allow a resident physician to carry out a physical … Continue reading

I find myself writing these words on the day of the winter solstice. The days that have been getting progressively shorter and darker stop doing so, and now begin to slowly lengthen and become brighter. The derivation of the word “solstice” is itself interesting, stemming from the latin sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still). It’s therefore a time when … Continue reading

For a teenage boy growing up in a small town, the local auto mechanic can become a best friend and key to social success. I had great admiration for one in particular who would let me watch and explain what he was doing as he went about trying to resuscitate whatever antiquated pile of spare parts I was currently passing … Continue reading

Is it a problem, or just a shrewd investment? By the end of his or her medical education, the average Canadian graduate will owe $71,721. That amount, which has increased by about 7.3% over the past 5 years, may seem either huge or trivial depending on your perspective and stage of life. Interpretation might be enhanced with a few more … Continue reading

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Beyond competencies – What should every Canadian medical graduate be able to do? Consider this: When you find yourself a passenger on an aircraft coming in for a tricky landing on a stormy night, would you be more comforted by the knowledge that your pilot is an expert in aeronautics and aircraft design, or that he/she has demonstrated the ability … Continue reading

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There is, perhaps, no more common or expected site on a warm, late summer afternoon than that of a man mowing his lawn. When I came upon just such a scene during a solitary walk not too long ago, I nonetheless found it distinctive for two reasons. Firstly, the gentleman mowing the lawn was elderly. In fact, very elderly. A … Continue reading

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Is Leadership a Physician Competency?
Published Mon, March 2, 2015

Are physicians “leaders”? Put another way, is “leadership” a necessary or even desirable attribute of the aspiring or practicing medical doctor? The recent revision of the competency framework of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, and specifically the proposal to change the “Manager” competency to “Leader” has sparked some interesting conversation on this issue. The root of this controversy … Continue reading

CARMS Match Day 2015: What our students are experiencing and how to help them get through it.
Published Mon, February 23, 2015

For medical students in Canada, there are three days in the course of their career that stand out above all others: the day they receive their letter of acceptance to medical school; convocation (when they officially become graduate physicians); and Match Day. The most emotionally charged by far, is Match Day. For those of you not familiar, Match Day is … Continue reading

Put your own oxygen mask on first: Helping medical students develop good self-care habits
Published Mon, February 23, 2015

By Janet Roloson, M.Ed., Chartered Psychologist When you are on an airplane, you may have noticed how the flight attendant instructs you to put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting others. This is important because if you run out of oxygen, you cannot help others with their oxygen masks – or with anything else. The same general principle … Continue reading

In Defense of the Lecture
Published Tue, February 17, 2015

Medical Grand Rounds are a longstanding (dare I say, traditional) feature of the academic medical centre.  In fact, their durability and continuing appeal might be considered somewhat perplexing in an age of increasing, almost frantic, busy-ness, and easy access to medical information and prepared presentations ready for review at our convenience.  Here at Queen’s, they have become rejuvenated and are … Continue reading

Happiness, Wonderment, and Career Choice
Published Mon, February 9, 2015

By J. Peter O’Neill, M.D., M.Div. During the first week of medical school, I introduce myself to the first year class, and proudly say that I am happy in my career and then I give my entire careers curriculum in one breath. I say: “You were selected to medical school because of outstanding individual academic performance and excelling in the … Continue reading