No one ever said the life of a medical student was easy, but you don’t have to do it alone. Aside from the support of family, friends, and your medical school community, the internet is a wonderful resource and repository of helpful information. Wondering where to start? Check out these six must-read blogs for medical students.
Founded in 2004 by internal medicine physician Kevin Pho, this blog -- “social media’s leading physician voice” -- has become a cult favorite not only among medical school students, but within the medical community at large.
Home to thousands of contributions by front-line doctors, nurses, medical students and policy experts on topics ranging from practice and policy to finance and tech, KevinMD has earned fave reviews from its readers as well as the media, with The Wall Street Journal declaring it “a punchy, prolific blog that chronicles America’s often dysfunctional health care system through the prism of a primary care provider.”
CNN, meanwhile, awarded KevinMD.com a spot on its list of five recommended health care Twitter feeds.
This University of Michigan Medical School blog gives a platform to people with valuable voices: medical students themselves.
“Under those short white coats and shiny stethoscopes are real people making their way through the University of Michigan Medical School. From the moment they step onto campus, our students’ paths are uniquely defined by the passions that drive them, boundless opportunities that open up to them and their dreams for the future. Here are their stories in their own words,” announces declares the website.
Founded by allergist/immunologist and assistant professor of medicine and pediatrics Ves Dimov, this daily news blog and more is widely regarded as one of the best blogs in medicine.
Enthuses the British Medical Journal of CasesBlog’s offerings and value, “It contains a rich collection of ‘presurfed’ material for busy clinicians and features interactivity and timely discussion. Dimov is also a supporter of medical librarian bloggers. Why waste time fumbling with search engines when you can consult this blog for timely updates? As well as case discussions, Ves provides links to today's medical headlines from Reuters and clinical images via a dynamic, free photo sharing tool called Flickr….Clinical Cases and Images is a virtual laboratory for doctors and medical librarians interested in Web 2.0."
Named for Dr. Robert M. Centor, AKA “Dr. Bob” and “da boss,” Medrants provides information and insights from an experienced physician on the field of internal medicine, American healthcare, and medical education.
In addition to essays and articles, the blog also has a handy Medscapes Cases section, during which a clinical case is presented for medical student discussion, followed by a solution several days later.
5. Street Watch
Medical school students stand to learn many things from many people -- and not just physicians either. Enter Street Watch: Notes of a Paramedic. (Sounds like a great name for a tv show, no?)
In including Street Watch in its list of the 50 Best Medical Blogs of 2018, Cables and Sensors says, “Street Watch is home to interesting stories of a paramedic’s daily life. Readers of the blog will experience being out there where the action is during scene calls through the writer’s posts. In Street Watch, readers will both be educated and engaged at the same time with the relevant posts that are based on experience and clear facts, making it an enjoyable read for individuals both in the medical and non-medical field.”
The medical field can be a stressful one, and research increasingly points to the value of laughter for stress relief. With its satirical content “created by a bunch of wannabe stand up comedians who ended up in healthcare,” GomerBlog -- self-declared as “earth’s finest medical news site” -- offers an antidote to mental health issues and burnout. (Emotional support lice, anyone?)
In addition to becoming a better future doctor by reading blogs, you can also learn -- and share! -- a lot by doing some blogging yourself. If you’re not up for starting your own blog, many of these sites welcome content from contributors. So whether you’ve got a hard-hitting piece on the opioid epidemic in mind, or have a great idea for a humorous quiz on which Grey’s Anatomy doctor a reader is, why not put pen to paper -- or fingertips to keyboard -- and get writing?