*opens email inbox* *screams* *faints* *wake up with an evil smug*This was followed by application for a US visa, a plane ticket, and a letter.
— Jun Yi Sim (@jysim) March 3, 2012
Many of my virtual friends took a guess in the first tweet, but as more teasers were revealed some eventually guessed it.
This year happens to be the 200th anniversary of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), the oldest and most prestigious journal in medicine. As part of their celebrations, they organized an essay competition for medical students entitled:
In the last twenty years, the internet and social networking have brought profound changes in how information is communicated. How can we harness this technology to improve health?I wrote a 500-word essay one weekend and made my submission without thinking twice. 4 months later I received an email and we're back to the tweet above.
What I won is an invitation to a full-day conference, Dialogues in Medicine, in Harvard Medical School on June 22. Virtually everyone in the NEJM community - physicians, patients, and members of the community were invited to discuss the progress, obstacles, experiences, and future of medicine in 4 topics - HIV/AIDS, maternal and fetal health, breast cancer, and cardiology.
I had a hard time deciding whether to attend the conference. I will start my intern year in June with call nights every 3 days in addition to daily clinical work. My partners will have a hard time covering my week off, and my patient list will suffer considerable discrepancies at the end of my rotation.
After talking to numerous people and playing the "go, not go" game for a week, I decided I will take the leap. The reasoning goes as follows: I will regret it for the rest of my life if I don't go. No more arguments.
I will spend 3 days in Boston, which I had visited last summer. One day for the conference, two days to recuperate from jet lag and sightseeings. I am sure it will be another eye-opening experience for me, and as a return to my loyal readers I will try to write an account about it, as well as every tiny details during the process. So stay tuned!