Currently a Fellow in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine in Jacksonville, I appreciate very much the opportunities that I have been enjoying in the advancement of my career so far, mainly because I am from a Third World country and fully understand the great value of medicine in light of the misery that surrounded me growing up, among those without adequate health education or medical attention. Even as a young person myself, the pain I saw around me growing up in Iran impacted me most in the case of young people, children, and adolescents. I look back on the children I played with within Iran, our neighbors, and children of marginalized social classes, in a developing country like Iran, and I grieve. This has inspired me to take a particular interest as an Emergency Medicine doctor in your people. I have been learning as much as possible, particularly these last few years, about the challenges faced by adolescents, as much as psychological and physical challenges, and how they are so often intertwined. I hope to make my mark in detecting and treating victims of bullying and abuse.
My great passion for children's health led me to focus on Pediatric Medicine early on. Before my current Fellowship position in Florida, I completed a Pediatric Residency at the Medical Center of Central Georgia at XXXX University. There, I had an opportunity to fully master the fundamentals of Pediatrics, primarily by long hours spent joyfully on the front lines of patient care. Thus, during this experience, I realized that I wanted to complement this intensive clinical experience with research in Pediatrics, so I applied to and was accepted to my current position fellowship position at the University of Florida in Jacksonville. I have learned much about medical research and statistics over the past three years. When I read a journal article, I grasped it much faster than before and understood its relevance for improving medical practice.
As I learned from exemplary physicians in medical school, I became increasingly fond of the expression best translated from Farsi as “see one, do one, and teach one.” I observed everything intensively with focus. I excelled during residency; comfortable and confident, I was selected to teach and practice. My highlight was receiving the Pediatric Clerkship Resident Teaching Award at XXXX University School of Medicine 2012-2013. Teaching and supervising not only residents but also medical students and Physician Assistants for an extensive ER with pediatric and emergency residents. I have also had the privilege of teaching at the fire rescue station in a prehospital setting. The more autonomy I have, the more creative and productive I become, and I look forward to a long professional lifetime of engagement with my field on an academic level.
My first primary research as a fellow dealt with a cluster of four pediatric asthma patient deaths in the Emergency Department in 5 months. I was horrified, and this project occupied my soul as no question had ever before; and I put together a lengthy, detailed, documented report of poor compliance with medication and lack of primary physician follow-up. My second scholarly project is an IRB-approved bullying screening for the pediatric emergency department. I became familiar with and most interested in this topic through my mentor, Dr. XXXX, the president of the Florida chapter of the AAP.
Currently, there is no routine screening for bullying in the pediatric emergency department; however, Dr. XXXX has published a paper with some suggestions for screening tools and the role of pediatric emergency physicians in identifying victims of bullying. I have spent a great deal of time requesting providers, in person and electronically, to participate in the study and screen eligible patients during the study period. Throughout my work on behalf of the bullying project, I have found myself increasingly focusing on adolescent medicine – especially concerning the psychosocial aspects of their lives and the significant emotional needs that arise during this sensitive age. Recognizing red flags for bullying can help prevent it, as can educating patients and families about bullying and its consequences.
My work to address the problem of bullying and how to detect it has helped me develop my leadership skills, be more responsible, prioritize, and organize myself to complete my study on time. After the fellowship, I am more interested in working in an academic setting. Helping patients regain their health is joyful. This process is even more rewarding if I have a chance to tutor students, residents, and fellows. Another wonderful experience during my fellowship was participating in quality improvement projects. I also participated in educating pediatric residents in the simulation lab during their Pediatric Emergency rotations.
My grandmother dedicated her life to serving others. She built hospitals, a school, and a library. Therefore, proving compassionate care for my patients is my second nature which was acknowledged by my receipt of the Strawberry Award for Excellence in Patient Care in 2012. I have always wanted to contribute to the betterment of children’s lives, and I chose Pediatric Emergency because I see it as, at the same time, the most challenging and the most rewarding.
Thank you for considering my application to the XXXX Fellowship Program in Pediatric Emergency.