As a new fourth year medical student, the reality of impending graduation and licensure is becoming quite real. The last 3 years have been spent diligently studying for pre-clinical exams, shelves, and boards, vying for opportunities of hands-on practice, and slowly building a foundation of medical knowledge. This has allowed for little time to reflect on how far one has come and to look ahead at what the future holds – I suppose that is in part what 4th year is for. With 312 days until graduation, it has become clear that there is still MUCH learning to be had and much learning that will continue throughout my medical career.
I believe that my medical institution values patient safety. We have extensive training in a variety of modalities in communication, team work, advocacy, and interprofessionalism, and are held to very high professional, ethical and academic standards. However, after reading Wall of Silence Why Hospitals Should Fly I realize that my training in patient safety is still in its infantile stage. Because of this I think that the name of Emerging Leaders in Patient Safety is apt. Emerging embodies a very core foundational value of the culture of patient safety – development, progression, learning.
Attending the Academy for Emerging Leaders in Patient Safety (AELPS) Esra Bennathan Session is an important step in my development as a future physician. By attending AELPS I am taking responsibility for my training and I’m making a commitment to my future patients and profession (backed by action) to be the best healer possible. I want to be a physician who not only supports patient safety but is a champion for it. This requires the work, training and commitment now, still relatively early in my training, in order to build a strong foundation. I hope that with the education and experience AELPS will provide, that I will be able to cultivate a strong environment of patient safety as a brand new doctor. I want to start my career armed with the confidence that I know how to create a culture of honest, efficient and top-tier teamwork and communication, and instilled with the strength to advocate for changes and action – and be able to speak up for this even as a young doctor.
I anticipate that AELPS will also offer a unique insight to patient safety that is less well known to the medical student – perspective from outside of the traditional standardized academic medical institution. I think that historically, the “patient experience” and patient outlook was something that was assumed to just organically be achieved over time throughout medical training. This is something that will indeed happen over time. But gaining additional perspectives and outside training on patient safety will drastically augment my understanding of patient safety as a whole – this perspective is something that is absolutely crucial during training if I am to become an emerging leader. For this reason I am so honored and energized to be a part of the 2022 AELPS session this week!

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