Friday, November 22, 2013

Effective Interviews - Part 2: What's Hot?

In part 1 of "Effective Interviews" we covered the basics of how to get the most out of your interview days.  In part 2 we are going to raise your interview game with a discussion of what topics are "hot" in Emergency Medicine in the fall of 2013.

While on the interview trail you are discovering the "hot topics" to talk about from your fellow applicants.  This is the default topic.  The one you go to when you are out of other questions or because everyone says you should ask about it.  For a long time this was Trauma, as in: "What is your Trauma experience like?"  For a few years now Ultrasound has usurped this spot.  This year, another shift is likely upon us: "What role does Social Media have in your education program?".  The most mainstream of EM publications, the Annals of Emergency Medicine, just published an article about Twitter.

Twitter is a great window into what is being discussed and debated in EM.  All you have to do is follow a few of the disseminators of #FOAMed (@emlitofnote, @njoshi8, @emcrit, @CriticalCareNow, @srrezaie, @precordialthump, @LWestafer, just to name a few) and you will quickly be caught up on the discussion.

But if none of the preceding paragraph made any sense to you, here are some of the big topics under discussion in 2013:

  • Social Media in Education - you should probably have an opinion or stance on this.  Many of your interviewers will.   Though you shoudl be ready for otherwise wonderful and enthusiastic educators to be very skeptical of the whole concept.  They may also be more interested in your understanding of professionalism as it relates to Facebook/Twitter/Snapchat/etc.
  • Thrombolysis for Acute Ischemic Stroke - this is being debated vigorously in EM with ACEP releasing a policy statement that has led to much consternation from many practicing Emergency Physicians.  This has recently been discussed really well on the ERCast podcast.  The LITFL blog also did a good discussion to review as well.
  • Video vs. Direct Laryngoscopy - This is being hotly debated in EM right now with very knowledgable people on both sides of the "Is direct laryngoscopy dead?" debate.  As someone about to begin your training, knowing the programs philosophy on airway management is going to be really important to your education.  What do they do?  What do they teach?  This is way more important to your eventual career than how they get Trauma experience (A comes before T, after all).

Other topics of recent discussion also include:

Transexamic Acid (TXA) in Bleeding Trauma Patients - Review by Napolitano et al.

Novel anti-coagulants and newly approved treatments - Dabigatran, Rivaroxaban, Prothrombin Complex Concentrates

And just this past week, the value of Therapeutic Hypothermia (aka Targeted Temperature Management [TTM]) in Cardiac Arrest came under renewed scrutiny.

So much to know.  Maybe you should get that Twitter handle after all...

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