Key take-aways from Dr. Ilan Shapiro's Instagram Live!

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Lesly Banuelos - Pharmacy Student at Western University of Health Sciences

on an international level. He's actively involved in creating binational public health programs to reach Hispanic communities on both sides of the U.S-Mexico border. Yesterday, Dr. Shapiro shared his experience and offered amazing advice on an hour-long Instagram Live.

  1. Just knock - Don't be afraid to apply to a certain school or job because you're worried the answer will be no. Dr. Shapiro mentioned that he was not a top student, but he had important qualities the positions he applied for were looking for. If you don't apply, the answer can't be yes. If you don't take risks, amazing things can't happen. If you don't knock, the door will never open!
  2. Clinical Experience and Your Career - Dr. Shapiro stressed the importance of not basing your career choice off of a single experience during rotations or residency. You may have a negative experience on one rotation, but ultimately like that medical speciality. You may not hit it off with your attending during residency, but be called to that field. Don't let a negative experience turn you away.
  3. Ask yourself, "What is my mission in life?" - When thinking about how you want to spend your time as a doctor, think about how you want to be remembered professionally. Do you want to be known for your extraordinary surgery skills? Do you want to leave a positive legacy on your community through public policy? Do you want undocumented patients to know they can trust you? Ask yourself and find your mission.
  4. Secret Agenda - All patients have a secret agenda when they go to the doctor. Sometimes patients aren't up front about their health problems, and it's difficult to always identify the social and political determinants affecting their day-to-day life and ultimately, their health. It's your responsibility as a physician to read between the lines and help your patients in all the ways you can.
  5. Run Away! - Medical school is tough. Residency is draining. Physician burn out is high. You don't need to suffer in the medical profession. Do what makes sense and stick with it. If medicine or a certain specialty isn't your calling, run away! Run to what makes you happy.
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