In this Issue
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|Dr. Grace Jones and Student Doctor Isaac Smith at the Spring Touro COOKS (Clinically-Oriented Osteopathic Kitchen Studies) event hosted by the TUC Nutrition Club.|
New Year, New Diets
Low carb, Paleolithic, ketogenic, gluten free, juice cleanses—the world of dieting is a constant swirl of information that sends many revelers reeling after the New Year. By February, reaching those goals can already feel lost. But according to nutritionists at TUC, the path to lasting change begins with a few fundamentals, such as establishing a healthier relationship with whole and unprocessed foods.
“There is no one size fits all diet. People live to 100 eating all kinds of diets, but the key is to remove processed foods from our pantries and refrigerators,” said Dr. Grace Jones, Assistant Professor of Basic Sciences in the College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) and advisor for TUC’s Nutrition Club.
Rather than seeking out a magic diet, she recommends to commit to small changes. The most common reason that people fail to keep with their diets is because they strive for a huge, overarching diet that they are unable to sustain over time.
For example, instead of cutting sugar entirely, commit to not drinking soda or visiting drive throughs for the month of January. With that achievement, the change will have already taken place that leads to new and helpful behaviors, like drinking fizzy water or preparing healthy snacks ahead of time that meet the need for food
Also emphasizing adherence to a diet that works for you is Isaac Smith, COM Class of 2022, who has been applying his graduate education in nutrition to what he and his peers can use with their future patients.
“A paper published last year in the The Journal of the American Medical Association showed close to a 1-to-1 correlation between weight loss and a person’s ability to stick with that diet,” stressed Mr. Smith. “It wasn’t about the specific macro and micronutrients in your diet. The thing that predicted your outcome the most was adherence to diet.”
For busy people like students who are looking for a simpler path to a healthy lifestyle, food preparation on Sundays for the rest of the week is another tool for success. Setting a tray of vegetables and meat for the week can be a useful start, while one-pot cooking allows for meal-sized portions to be easily stored in the freezer.
“The key is to start making your own food,” said Yasmin Bains, COM Class of 2020.
“I think that’s a lifestyle that a lot of us have forgotten how to maintain. It’s not about dieting. You just need to prepare and cook whole unprocessed foods.”
As people set their New Year resolutions with a hard look in the mirror, one distinction that Director of Counseling Services Ryan Guetersloh, MA, LMFT, hopes they keep in mind for themselves is to set goals, not expectations.
“It is understandable to have very high expectations,” explained Mr. Guetersloh. “But unreachable expectations can be really tough and lead to a tremendous amount of self-criticism, which is really damaging.”
As someone who helps students look at their own internal dialogue about themselves and their place in the world, Mr. Guetersloh stressed how many don’t actually show the same basic kindness to themselves that they give so readily to others.
“Students will tell me that their self-criticism is what motivates them, but motivation through fear is not (healthy) motivation,” he said. “Instead, building resiliency by being kind to ourselves and having goals that we can meet is something that I find many people sorely need."
To help introduce such resiliency into a person’s daily life, having an open conversation to identify the unduly harsh and critical thoughts is what Mr. Guetersloh finds makes the habits actionable. Once seen, the question then becomes whether that internal dialogue is something that a person really wants to continue.
From that point, validation can be built on tangible, individual qualities such as “I treat people with respect” and “I’m on a good path”, stories that stay at hand when self-criticism begins to take over.
“The self-criticism doesn’t seem warranted the more I get to know them,” Mr. Guetersloh
said. “Okay, so you stumbled and a situation didn’t work out. But here you are working
on it. I think that makes you infinitely more likable and respectable.”
By Provost & CAO Sarah Sweitzer, PhD
A Bay Area native and proud mother of four and grandmother to three, Malynda McGregor, Administrative Coordinator of Student Services in the College of Pharmacy, knows the importance of providing and advocating for care to those who need it most, in part because of the challenges that she has faced and overcome herself.
“I am so much about support,” she said. “I’ve been so many things in my life, and the one thing that I’ve found is if you have support, you can make it through anything.”
In 2017, Ms. McGregor underwent homelessness with her adult daughter, young son, and grandson. They spent three months in motels and their car in Solano County until entering a shelter for families in San Francisco.
|Malynda McGregor, Administrative Coordinator of Student Services in the College of Pharmacy|
“Having children with special needs often puts you outside the box,” she reflected. “Services aren’t there to support you, and many times when services are offered, they tend to not be suitable because of the disabilities.”
After eight weeks, they were able to return to their own apartment in Solano County.
“Because I experienced this, I want other people to know that it does happen,” Ms. McGregor said sincerely. “You could be at your best and end up outside. But you can make it through and be successful in the process. You’d be starting over, but it’s starting over at the beginning of your new life.”
Having a 12-year-old son with emotional instability and a 9-year-old grandson diagnosed with downs syndrome, Ms. McGregor strives with her daughter to see that they both receive the best education possible.
“There’s so much they can teach us,” she says, glowing. “My grandson is absolutely amazing and doesn’t let his disability stop him from doing what he has to do. (He has such) gumption putting on his backpack and getting ready to go.”
A medical assistant for about 20 years, Ms. McGregor was an educator until she realized the right role for her.
“I think I had a hard time separating love of the students from the educational piece,” she said. “I found that I would be better in a more supportive position instead of being the teacher and making sure that these things get done.”
Ms. McGregor provided care to seniors and the disabled in Solano when she discovered a temporary position at TUC working with Assistant Dean of Students in the College of Pharmacy, Dr.
Rolly Kali-Rai. She eventually became Administrative Coordinator. “Working at TUC is amazing. The culture is inviting and filled with love – like being part of one big family,” she smiles. “From IT to Facilities, I have been received with open arms. I look forward to coming to work every day.”
Ms. McGregor plans large events for students throughout the school year, such as orientation or white coat, and she coordinates with leaving and returning students. She says that one of her greatest joys has been the reestablishment of the Pharmily Café.
“I found that these people care,” she continued. “This place is different, and I appreciate that greatly.”
The New Year brings a new scope of practice for physician assistants (PA) in California thanks to the repeal of professional restrictions in Senate Bill (SB) 697.
The bill, submitted by State Senator Anna Caballero, is part of the movement across the country to reach the final goal of Optimal Team Practice (OTP) for PA practice nationally, supported by the American Academy of PAs (AAPA).
Ousting what have been considered strict or obsolete limitations to PA practice, the change was made possible by legislation drafted by the California Academy of Physician Assistants (CAPA) in conjunction with the California Medical Association and Senator Anna Caballero’s staff. TUC’s Ana Maldonado, PA-C, Director of Clinical Education of the Joint MSPAS/MPH program, who and has been president of CAPA and served on the board for seven years, played a direct consulting role in the writing of the bill
“At the core of practicing medicine as a PA is the concept of team practice and working in teams. That’s one of our base tenants,” explained Ms. Maldonado. “What we’re advocating for is not independence but autonomy in practice.”
The Pharmily Café!
Run mostly on donations and kosher treats, the Pharmily Café is open to all during
the week of blocks in Lander Hall 170 for an early fuel up before the big exam. All are welcome.
Six repeals will go into effect on January 1, 2020. The previous requirement of direct, one-on-one physician supervision of PAs has instead grown to include a team of providers who govern the medical practice. Until now, 10-100% of every PA’s chart required a physician’s signature, as would any prescriptions of controlled substances written by a PA. According to Ms. Maldonado, these old regulations put undue strain on physicians supervising PAs, leading to the preferential hiring of Nurse Practitioners (NP) who do not have this requirement.
“When different community health centers look at hiring providers, they have to look at their efficiency models,” explained Ms.Maldonado. “If a physician has to supervise another member of their team and cosign their charts, that adds to their workload, and many providers resent having to do that...The bill now brings us to parity with NPs because the barrier is no longer there.”
Another repeal includes the Delegation of Services Agreement, which limited a PA’s scope of practice to that of their supervising physician.
“If I went into a family practice under a physician who didn’t have the areas of expertise that I have in providing HIV care then I wouldn’t be able to practice in that medical specialty until now,” said Ms. Maldonado.
Likewise, when a PA writes a prescription, it will no longer be required to include the contact information of a supervising physician, a regulation that has been outmoded by electronic writing of prescriptions, said Ms. Maldonado.
At TUC, students in the Joint MSPAS/MPH program are required to join both CAPA and AAPA to gain a deeper awareness and involvement with their professional organizations that monitor and craft legislation that affects their profession and the efforts toprovide optimal team practice.
“We are completely aligned with this legislation in terms of getting our providers out to areas that need care,” said Ms. Maldonado. “The program is cutting edge in this regard and very focused on preparing primary care providers to provide care to medically underserved communities.”
What Would Make 2020 Your Year?
“Extreme Clutter Reduction.”
-- Cee Harrelson, Clinical Skills Lab Director
“Learning how to dedicate more time for loved ones when it’s all school school school.”
-- Nayle Ibragimova, COP 2022
“I’m trying to stay sane because my baby is going to leave me and go to college. I’m going to need everybody to keep me in their prayers.”
-- Lavinia Wallace, CMA, Student Health Center
“A chance to visit my kids and grandkids in Europe.”
-- Joe Vallor, Advancement Services Coordinator
“I’d like to finish my sailing certification.”
-- Emma Schatz, OMS II
“I want to learn how to cook and like tofu.”
-- Casey O’Neil, OMS II
|Join the BISO Coat Drive
From January 6 to February 6, bring in your winter coats to help families stay warm for the Black Interprofessional Student Organization (BISO) Coat Drive. Boxes will be available across campus to gather coats for Faith Food Fridays (FFF), helping those in need throughout the Vallejo area.
College of Osteopathic Medicine, Class of 2021
I Am Touro:
COM 2021, Student Doctor of the Year
A Bay Area native whose work has already had an impact on the entire state, Hannah Dragomanovich is the 2019-2020 College of Osteopathic Medicine Student Doctor of the Year. The selection committee said that Ms. Dragomanovich stood out for co-sponsoring the now implemented Senate Bill 1143 which puts a limit on solitary confinement time for juveniles. As Advocacy Chair for California Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP), she also co-authored the resolution “Improve Access to Healthcare for Formerly Incarcerated Persons”, which was adopted by CAFP and by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).
What made SB1143 so important to you?
Prior to this bill passing, there was no limit in the amount of solitary confinement used in juvenile prisons and no regulations other than one hour per day having to be outside. This bill limits the use of solitary confinement in juvenile prisons to four hours, and if correctional officers want to keep an inmate in solitary confinement for longer than they have to get approval. This is so important especially for juvenile prisons as kids are still developing at this age and being in solitary confinement has long-lasting effects on their mental, emotional and physical health.
How did you come to advocate for the formerly incarcerated?
I first learned about how many obstacles formerly incarcerated people face when being released from prison after attending a Touro public health lecture on criminal justice my first year in medical school led by Dr. Ann Finkelstein, a family medicine physician who works at La Clinica in Vallejo. It inspired me to co-author a resolution with another Touro student, Alia McKean helping to increase access to healthcare for formerly incarcerated persons. Now, CAFP and AAFP will be encouraging prisons to create medical discharge plans for incarcerated persons, ensuring that people will be enrolled in healthcare and established with a primary care provider prior to their release.
What was it like to be named SDOY?
It is a huge honor being named SDOY—I feel incredibly humbled to have been chosen, especially because the other people who were nominated are all so amazing and inspiring!
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