Cornell Undergraduate Health Cooperative is hosting the ninth annual “Sick in America" conference in collaboration with the Sloan Program in Health Administration.

April 24, 2018

Doctors and Policy Makers to Speak about the American Health Care System in Conference This Week

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Cornell Undergraduate Health Cooperative is bringing healthcare professionals and medical school faculty members to Cornell this week to dissect topics involving the U.S. healthcare system.

“We want to discuss … various perspectives, with doctors, patients, economists and city-planners,” said Conrad Bhamani ’19, president of CUHC.

The ninth annual “Sick in America” conference started on Tuesday and will end on Friday. It is held in collaboration with the Sloan Program in Health Administration, according to Bhamani.

CUHC was founded in 2009 to “address the confusion and frustration surrounding the U.S. healthcare system,” according to Bhamani.

“Millions of people suffer due to problems with the healthcare system … and this club seeks to foster collaboration among professionals, professors, and students from all Cornell colleges so that we can gain a more holistic view of the current healthcare system,” Bhamani told The Sun.

The conference kicked off with a workshop about surgery hosted by the Cornell Surgical Society in Malott Hall on Tuesday evening, according to the event’s Facebook page.

Prof. Claudia Kirsch, neuroradiology and otolaryngology, Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, will speak on Wednesday on the medical school admissions process.

“Professor Kirsch will be talking about her experiences as a neuroradiologist … she is on the admissions board of Hofstra medical school, so she will talk about the admissions process for pre-medical students, the changes in trends she is seeing, and what would make an ideal candidate in today’s atmosphere,” Bhamani told The Sun.

Prof. Nicolas Ziebarth, policy analysis and management, is scheduled to speak on Thursday on “How the Affordable Care Act Changed the U.S Landscape.”

On Friday, the conference will conclude with a talk by Prof. Henry Fessler, medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, on “Why Medicine is Making Doctors Sick.”

“[Prof. Fessler] will be speaking about … burnout among physicians, often leading to early retirement,” Bhamani said. “It is well known that the path to being a practicing physician is long and arduous and does not get much easier once one is a licensed doctor.”

Sick in America primarily attracts students interested in pursuing a professional degree in medical school or health care policy, according to Bhamani.

Aside from the conference, Bhamani said CUHC also hosts a gala to raise proceeds for pediatric cancer.