Junior Fellow news
Stacy Tsai, MD, District VIII Junior Fellow chair
As I reflect on this past year, some of my most memorable experiences were spent with District VIII Junior Fellows. We had an amazing exchange with ob-gyn residents in Costa Rica during the 2012 Interim District Meeting in March. I was surprised to learn that contraception is part of universal health coverage in Costa Rica and that all women have equal access to it. The country’s health policies are in many ways more advanced than those of the US.
District VIII Junior Fellows recognize the importance of advocacy in improving women’s health care in the US. We started a new task force on leadership and advocacy. Part of its task is to communicate with young people via email to get them more involved in national elections. This idea evolved into an ACOG national campaign, “Every Vote Counts,” with the help of Stacie Monroe, ACOG associate director of political advocacy, and Luke A. Newton, MD, Junior Fellow Congress Advisory Council chair.
In addition to reproductive health services, the 2012 ACOG election guide focused on two Junior Fellow-specific issues: medical student loan repayment and graduate medical education funding. With the increasing cost of medical education (the average debt of a medical student entering residency is $150,000), the issue of loan repayment is at the heart of every young physician. The Affordable Care Act addresses an array of workforce issues, including loan repayment. I encourage Junior Fellows to become engaged in conversations on these issues, which will affect their future.
At the 2012 Annual District Meeting, Junior Fellows from Districts VI, VIII, and IX organized a bowling event to encourage interaction between medical students, Junior Fellows, young physicians, and Fellows. The event was a huge success, with more than 80 people in attendance.
District VIII Junior Fellows also entered as contestants in “Dancing with the Docs,” a fundraising event for ACOG’s federal political action committee, Ob-GynPAC. After hours of practice, we performed a dance choreographed to the song “I Gotta Feeling” by The Black Eyed Peas. We were thrilled to win and bring home the mirror ball trophy! View photos from this event and more at the ADM on Facebook.
District VIII Junior Fellows continue to fundraise for our Central American Education Project. We are in the process of selecting our first scholarship recipient.
I want to thank the Fellows of District VIII for being so supportive of Junior Fellow activities. I am excited for another memorable and productive year in ACOG.