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Residency Program Insider, October 25, 2013

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Geriatrics is a tough sell, Benjamin A. Bensadon, EdM, PhD, writes in a recent AM Rounds post.

Bensadon, a medical educator in the Department of Geriatric Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, writes about his program’s efforts to interest students in the unpopular specialty by introducing them to “cool elders,” including a 90-year-old husband-and-wife team and an elderly emphysema patient who taught himself to play the harmonica to improve his lung capacity.

To dispel negative, stereotypical views of aging, medical educators need to take a novel approach, Bensadon writes.

 “In the U.S., geriatrics consistently ranks low in reimbursement but high in physician satisfaction, underscoring that geriatricians find their work gratifying and meaningful for different, often personal reasons,” he write. “To be effective, then, our educational efforts must take a similarly personal approach to reaching our increasingly diverse students.”



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