Article: Prepare ME!

Discussion in 'Interviews' started by Season, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. chinaski

    chinaski Regular Member

    Messages:
    4,115
    Likes Received:
    306
    Trophy Points:
    83
    To play Devil's Advocate (as well an interviewer might on the day), do you believe that alcoholism is a lifestyle choice? How can someone personally regret a disease process?

    Basically your reasoning is sound; that's the sort of response they'd be wanting. The next step would be for them to push you to decide on one recipient or the other, and substantiate your decision. And so...?
     
  2. blueocean

    blueocean New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I feel that he would not necessarily regret a disease process, but regret his actions which led to that disease process in the first place. I believe that while alcoholism isn't necessarily a lifestyle choice and that there probably are reasons behind his actions, he could have taken a different approach to his problems, instead of resorting to alcohol, ie. talking to his doctor, seeing a counsellor, talking to someone...that sort of approach.

    In terms of choosing one over the other, my decision would be based on who is more likely to benefit from the organ transplant and also who has been on the organ transplant waiting list for the longest time. It is that person that I would elect to get the transplant.

    Based on the following assumptions:
    - the mother is more likely to get more years from the transplant and more benefit to her because her children will have their mother around for a longer time and this will be of benefit to them also
    - the mother's illness has a low chance of returning and damaging the new liver
    - both 'applicants' have been waiting for approximatley the same time

    I would choose the mother for the organ transplant based on the assumptions because I feel that she will get the most benefit out of the transplant and that her children will also benefit.

    Thanks again :)
     
  3. chinaski

    chinaski Regular Member

    Messages:
    4,115
    Likes Received:
    306
    Trophy Points:
    83
    There are a lot of assumptions there, and a lot of them are based on value judgements that you've made about the two people. Value judgements are dangerous, because they potentially expose your personal bias.

    It's important that you don't fall into the trap of vilifying people. It's a layperson assumption that addiction is not a disease process - that it can be simply avoided by easy means - so we'll put that aside for a moment (as you are a layperson - and a young one at that - so can be forgiven). Nonetheless, be aware that addiction isn't that simple, and that you can come across as being judgemental and damning of someone based on stereotypes, without seeing them as an individual person.

    As such, consider the alcoholic: if you were told that he has lived a difficult life, fallen on hard times, and lost his wife of 20 years who he loved very much, would it make him more human to you? That he has two children of his own, who are desperate to see him live and see his first grandchild, who is going to be born next month? That he regularly donates to charity, and before his alcoholism took over his life, that he was a volunteer in his local community, who lived a quiet, unassuming life.

    And the single mother: would you think the same of her if the interviewers revealed to you that she belongs to a local political party which advocates for a White Australia policy, and that she was recently investigated by the RSPCA for allegedly drowning puppies in her bathtub?

    What factors do you employ most critically to allocate the liver now?
     
  4. blueocean

    blueocean New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks so much for the feedback, really got me thinking. I feel that this is what I was trying to ask about in the first place because I'm not sure whether in reality doctors consider the personal lives of the patients on the liver transplant list, just the medical stuff, like who has been waiting the longest and who has the best chance of benefiting from the transplant.

    So, based on the information that you provided:
    I want to base my opinion on the medical facts in the sense of who is going to benefit from this liver transplant, ie. whoever gains the most life years from the transplant, balanced against who has been on the waiting list the longest. I have a problem, personally, with basing my decision on their personal lives because I believe that it is judgmental to make such a huge decision on their personality and actions which I personally disapprove of- for example the single mother allegedly drowning puppies in her bathtub.

    THe only involvement that I would have in terms fo their personal lives, is how committed they are to making the correct lifestyle choices and taking care of their new liver, for example the alcoholic deciding to talk about his alcoholism and other problems with a counsellor, so that I can make sure that he is at least committed to taking care of his new liver and that the transplant would have been a success.

    In conclusion, these are the steps that I would take:
    - Talk to each 'applicant' and gather any informaiton I can in regards to the transplant in determining how each applicant is committed to taking care of their new liver
    - Consider how long each applicant has been on the transplant waiting list
    - Chances of success: who will gain the most life years and whose body has a higher chance of accepting the new liver and not rejecting it

    Therefore, I would balance the above pieces of informaiton to make my decision and not make the decision based on the applicants' personal lives.
     
  5. finallyready

    finallyready New Member

    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Great post Chinaski...
     
  6. frootloop

    frootloop D-D-D-Doctor Moderator

    Messages:
    3,250
    Likes Received:
    1,795
    Trophy Points:
    143
    Not overly relevant (and I'm quite possibly wrong), but I'd have to disagree to some extent in this case. As has been pointed out, addiction is a disease process (and my understanding is that it's particularly difficult to treat), so you can't really just go 'Oh, the person with alcohol dependence *said* they're going to change, so there's certainly no problems with giving them a new liver'. What they consciously want to do and what actually ends up happening might be two different stories. In my opinion (which, in fairness, carries next to zero weight) that's not really a case of judging someone, it's a case of looking at the statistical likelihood of a relapse, and weighing it up.
    That said, obviously there's not enough information here to make a call on how likely this individual is to be able to overcome their addiction, so I'm just talking in sweeping generalisations (which is always the best way to look at things, right? :p ), and I realistically have zero clue whatsoever as to how things like alcohol dependence are actually weighed-up when it comes to deciding whether or not to give someone a new liver, these are just my rambling musings.
    Edit: Hadn't actually noticed this was on an interview preparation thread lol, so this post is probably hugely irrelevant anyway *Scurries away*
     
  7. chinaski

    chinaski Regular Member

    Messages:
    4,115
    Likes Received:
    306
    Trophy Points:
    83
    The fact of the matter is that patients are assessed prior to being placed on the transplant list with regards to their ability to be a suitable custodian to a new organ. For people with addiction, this includes a mandatory and documented period of sobriety. If circumstances change, eligibility to remain on the list can be rescinded. Addiction is but one potential stumbling block; poor social support is another (to name but two).

    I don't think that point is particularly pertinent in this setting, as the candidate is not expected to know that. These sorts of ethical scenarios present the potential for a candidate to jump to conclusions about people based on social stereotypes, or, conversely, to show a more balanced approach. By adopting the latter, blueocean has actually managed to touch on a lot of transplant allocation criteria without being aware of it.
     
  8. blueocean

    blueocean New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    [MENTION=10716]frootloop[/MENTION], yeah that's what I'm a little confused about and maybe I didn't make it clear, but that is what I was worried about with the alcoholic because I wasn't sure what the chances of relapsing were for him and so that's why I concluded that with the information I had available, I can't make a decision, but I sort of just talked about what pieces of information I need to make a fair, non-judgemental decision.

    Thanks for your feeback :)
     
  9. Synchronised

    Synchronised New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    How to prepare for medical school interview?

    I watched some videos on YouTube about this topic and the questions can be quite tricky. They require that you actually know what you are talking about, for example you have to know about doctor-patient confidentiality and that if a 3rd person is at risk it is the doctors responsibility to protect the 3rd person, patient's right to commit suicide, etc... so how can I familiarize myself with things like these so I can answer questions logically in the interview? A med professor at USYD said the best way is to read about medicine and discuss what you read with friends and family, he said this could help with the interview but other than that he said you are not meant to prepare for the interview/umat but I think preparation is very important so any tips are appreciated! *section removed*


    I've already sent you a PM: We don't allow discussion of paid tutors or prep courses on our site.

    ~Hav.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 9, 2012
  10. Havox

    Havox Sword and Martini Guy! Emeritus

    Messages:
    4,687
    Likes Received:
    29
    Trophy Points:
    48
    [MENTION=17527]Synchronised[/MENTION] Read your personal messages please. If you need to reply, post on my wall on my profile page.
     
  11. heatherkbell

    heatherkbell New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Looked for the right thread and this is possibly the closest I could find so here goes..

    My mother, father and stepmother are all doctors. I want to bring this up in the interview (obviously only if it's relevant) not because I want to be a doctor because it's in the family or I've been influenced by them - but to illustrate the exact opposite. That I grew up within medicine and practically within hospitals going on rounds with my parents etc and I always shied away from medicine purely because I felt that I would be doing it out of having it ingrained in me and being familiar with it. So I went to law school instead and after a year of that and for other reasons it came to light when comparing it to a life as a lawyer that medicine is truly where my passion lies (babble babble cliche and so forth) but the point is that I feel that the fact that I turned explicitly away from medicine and it never even occurred to me to want it in the beginning compared to now where it's what I want most in the world shows that I want this for the right reasons and am committed.

    POINT IS...finally...my Dad thinks it's a supremely bad idea to mention that I have such a medical background as he feels it may prejudice the interviewers against me 'doctor's daughter wants to follow daddy' and so on...anyone encountered a similar situation/have a perspective? Thanks!
     
  12. miss_universe

    miss_universe muse. Emeritus

    Messages:
    6,495
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Tricky question really. It could go either way, depending on the interviewer. You could use your background to show experience, but as your said, they could view it as the 'medicine family syndrome'. In honestly, I dont think it will come. Even if you have a mountain of experience by going o w ard round with your parents etc, that shouldnt be your 'experience' that you should rely on. It is experience sure, but its not necessarily one that you have create for yourself. I would view someone who has taken initiative and gone to a clinic and done work experience over someone who was fortunately enough to have a medical-based family and had experience growing up.

    Given that, you are in a unique position to have contacts to get some good experience from outside you family. Ask your father's colleagues if you can do experience with them. In that case, its not your family and you have talked about what you gained from it :)
     
  13. Season

    Season Emeritus MSO Staff Emeritus

    Messages:
    1,765
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I wouldn't lie, lying is bad, but I wouldn't make a big deal of it either. Definitely do not say "I want to be a doctor because my dad is a doctor", that's a really bad answer. You need to have a better answer then that.
     
  14. oska

    oska New Member

    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    My thoughts, be honest and if it does come up explain it to them as you have here. That is a good answer and shows your passion and that you are doing it for the right reasons.
     
  15. lumos

    lumos Regular Member

    Messages:
    303
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    This is a toughie. I was in a very similar situation, with the majority of my family being doctors. Some people discouraged me from mentioning it, others said it would be best to be honest about it. My advice is to go with absolute honesty. If you feel that it's YOUR passion, not just a familial connection then you could mention it, emphasising that having doctors in the family only increased your curiosity and excitement surrounding med. When I sat Monash interviews (the MMI), there was actually a stem about a kid whose family were doctors and who started med based on this and had a really tough time. I decided to not mention my family tradition at all and instead focus on the question objectively. There were, however, lots of kids (who were successful in the interview) who did mention their own experiences having doctor parents. It really depends.

    Thinking strategically, I think your experiences of starting another course and realising upon going a different path that med was your true passion is a really fantastic point to use. It's pretty unique, quite passionate, and brutally honest. If it were me, I would talk about that and perhaps not mention having medical parents. It is a bit of a risk, after all.

    If you do choose to mention it, then broach the topic like you have done above - you can really tell that med is what YOU want to do, and that's the main thing. Your own passion has to come through, whatever you say. Good luck :)
     
  16. Kyle

    Kyle Old Man MSO Emeritus

    Messages:
    2,193
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    I agree with your Dad, avoid mentioning it at all costs, it can only hurt you.
     
  17. lumos

    lumos Regular Member

    Messages:
    303
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The thing is that there are all kinds of things to do to avoid running into subjectivity. Interviewers will do their best to be objective but sometimes they can subconsciously feel a certain way; it's unavoidable. Like if a student mentions that they went to an elite and expensive private school, the interviewer will unconsciously have a different thought about this than they would, say, a student from a tiny school in a rural area. Like I said above, if you're looking for things to say for the 'why medicine' question, I think you have more than enough material from what you've said. If you feel the need to talk about your family in an honest and positive light then do so, but I wouldn't, just in case.
     
  18. thedon5

    thedon5 Regular Member

    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Anyone got a link to these articles?
     
  19. Benjamin

    Benjamin Admin (JCU MBBS) Administrar

    Messages:
    1,666
    Likes Received:
    483
    Trophy Points:
    83
    I'm afraid they have ceased to exist as far as I am aware.

    Similarly, my interview prep and JCU information articles have vanished into the ether than was MSO before the server change.
     
  20. Dr's ABC's

    Dr's ABC's New Member

    Messages:
    83
    Likes Received:
    35
    Trophy Points:
    18
    ...
     

Share This Page