For National Doctors’ Day, the ‘doctor was in’ at 5 local high schools

In Community Health, Feature by admin

MSSC President Dr. Jed Delmore told Northeast Magnet students about his path to medicine and about robotic surgery.

MSSC President Dr. Jed Delmore told Northeast Magnet students about his path to medicine and about robotic surgery.

Sending MSSC members into local schools to mark National Doctors’ Day gives physicians a chance to share their passion for practicing medicine while providing students a better idea of what it takes to become – and then be – a doctor.

Students asked about and heard of the years and hard work that go into joining the profession; that dance, theater and English majors get into medical school; that you don’t need to be a math whiz; and that you can have a life and be a doctor, too.

They also heard doctors share how practicing medicine was a calling, with family physician Dr. Steere’s “I get invited into people’s lives, and that’s why I became a doctor” reflecting a recurring theme.

Dr. Diane Steere shared her love of family medicine with students at Independent School.

Dr. Diane Steere shared her love of family medicine with students at Independent School.

This year Dr. Steere and 13 other physicians – Kent Bradley, Paul Callaway, Anita Campbell, Jed Delmore, Braden Foster, Dee Lochmann, Matthew Macaluso, David Miller, Justin Moore, Randall Morgan, Barry Murphy, Ragnar Peterson and Timothy Shaver – participated in visits from March 28 through March 30, the official Doctors’ Day.

All together, they spoke to about 225 students across eight classes at Independent School, West High, Trinity Academy, Wichita Collegiate and Northeast Magnet High School. Some came with prepared remarks or presentations but left plenty of time for students to fire away with questions.

As scrubs-clad general surgeon Dr. Peterson said to teacher Julia Fulbright’s Human Body Systems class at Northeast Magnet High School, “The doctor is in. How can I help you?”

Dr. Peterson shared that he wasn’t a great student in high school but knew he “wanted my life to mean something.” To succeed in medicine requires learning to contend with failure – and learn from it. “I’ve yet to do a perfect operation, and I’ve done over 6,000,” he said.

Students often inquired about the length of medical school. MSSC President Delmore gave the rundown – four years undergrad, four of med school, three or more of residency, possibly two or three of fellowship. “It seems like it’s forever but you do get paid,” he said, adding that’s why “you want to pick something you want to do every day.”

Dr. Delmore addressed a range of questions, from robotic surgery to health disparities to nursing to going to Texas A&M (his alma mater). And, in a common question, was asked about the portrayal of doctors on television. “It’s not like on TV. There’s not as much sex,” he said, adding that close – platonic – friendships develop among residents.

At Collegiate, one of Brent Gehrer’s freshman biology classes heard from Dr. Shaver, a rheumatologist. He told how he grew up as a science-loving people person, and “medicine brought those things together.” He explained how different interests and personality types were drawn to different specialties. Some doctors want to take care of everything, so family medicine is for them, while others like fixing things, so surgery is a good option. Dr. Shaver liked mysteries, so rheumatology was his choice.

Drs. Dee Lochmann and Matthew Macaluso take questions at Wichita Collegiate.

Drs. Dee Lochmann and Matthew Macaluso take questions at Wichita Collegiate.

Drs. Lochmann and Macaluso, psychiatrists on the KUSM-Wichita faculty, spoke to another group of Collegiate students of how they are both physicians and mental health professionals. Dr. Macaluso told how he enjoyed research and performing clinical trials, sharing an experience where a new, injectable anti-depressant drug “completely changed the lives of these people.”

Dr. Lochmann shared that, “I love in-patient care. The brain is fascinating to me, as is seeing where the brain can take you.”

“You save lives in psychiatry, and that’s something people don’t realize,” she said.

In her session at the Independent School, Dr. Steere, a “science nerd” who went to medical school after working as a research chemist, noted you don’t have to be a biology or chemistry major to enter medicine. It’s more important to be a good writer and a good thinker willing to work hard.

Although it’s not easy, particularly for women still, to balance work and family, it can be done, said Dr. Steere, a mother to three.

“You make it yours,” she said, adding that you shouldn’t avoid going into medicine “because you don’t think you can have a normal life. You can.”


“Dr. Moore was a wonderful guest speaker,” said Melody Robinson of West High, noting he stayed after the scheduled time and took additional questions. One of Robinson’s students later told her that Dr. Moore “helped her so much with info and gave her the motivation needed to know she could become a doctor – she wants to be a pediatric oncologist.”

“My students were inspired and were so appreciative to get a ‘real-world’ view of what they can expect on the path to a medical career, as well as what they can expect out of that career,” said Julia Fulbright, a Northeast Magnet High School science teacher. “It put a lot of students in a very motivated spirit, and they were mostly surprised with how relatable the presenters were.”

April President’s Message: “He is only MOSTLY dead. Not ALL dead.”

In President's Message by admin

delmore-mug-bigby Jed Delmore, MD —

I apologize if you are unfamiliar with “The Princess Bride,” in my opinion one of the most quotable movies in the memorable past.

In one scene, the Dread Pirate Roberts, aka Westley, has been tortured and is presumed dead by his companions. They take him to Miracle Max (Billy Crystal) in hopes of a miracle to bring him back to life. Max goes on to explain the difference between mostly dead and all dead.

You should make the decisions, not someone like Miracle Max.

You should make the decisions, not someone like Miracle Max.

Westley has no say in the matter. Everything that transpires is decided by his friends and Miracle Max. As it turns out, that was in his best interests.

I mention this scene as it pertains to the ideal that all of us should have the opportunity/obligation to express our wishes related to the extent of care we desire, life-prolonging measures and, ultimately, resuscitation.

Recently, Phillip Brownlee, executive director of the Medical Society of Sedgwick County, and I met with members of the steering committee of the TPOPP (Transportable Physician Orders for Patient Preference) initiative – Carolyn Harrison, Drs. Barbara Coats, Kimberly Hartwell and Terry Merrifield. The MSSC, along with Wesley Medical Center and Via Christi Health, were members of the initial steering committee.

The TPOPP principle is based on the belief that individuals have the right to make their own health care decisions as their lives near an end. The process starts with a conversation between patients or legal designee and their health care provider. The process culminates in a physician-signed bright-pink TPOPP form with the detailed wishes of the patient clearly outlined.

Anyone in an advanced stage of chronic, progressive illness or terminal illness should be offered the option of this signed form, outlining the individual’s wishes and signed by his or her physician. Often, this would involve primary care specialists and their patients, but it can involve other specialists as well.

Any time the patient presents to a hospital or its emergency department, or is transferred from one health care facility to another, the signed form should be presented to assure patient wishes are followed.

In years past when most physicians admitted and rounded on their own patients, the knowledge of the existence of such a form would be easier. Increasingly, the patient is assessed and admitted by a hospitalist or is cared for by the medical director of a nursing facility who frequently will not have a long-term relationship with the patient.

To provide the best care for our patients, we should all be comfortable having the end-of-life discussion and documenting their requests. The MSSC has offered to work with the TPOPP committee and local hospitals to facilitate immediate recognition of the patient’s wishes, presence of the TPOPP form and where to look for it once the patient is admitted. The form describes the patient’s wishes regarding extent of care and resuscitative measures, and with the required physician’s signature is designed to serve as a medical order.

All the local hospitals document advanced directive wishes of the patient, though in various locations in the EMR. Additionally, in many cases, the paper documents are scanned into the electronic record after dismissal.

As members of the MSSC, we should be supportive of the TPOPP initiative, and help our patients make and document their wishes.

Absent that effort, they may run the risk of meeting Miracle Max.

Technology is one barrier to TPOPP use; awareness, habits, hesitancy are others

In Community Health by admin

A recent New York Times article highlighted how even if a patient puts their wishes about end-of-life care into writing, their best intents can just as easily get buried in an electronic medical record as the paper copy left behind at home when most needed.

In the article, “You’ve Detailed Your Last Wishes, but Doctors May Not See Them” by physician Daniela Lamas, the dying patient’s wishes were honored – but just barely.

Transportable Physician Orders for Patient Preferences – the pink TPOPP form – is intended for patients in the last year of life with a terminal or chronic illness and sets out their wishes about the extent of care they desire. Since its launch as an MSSC-supported initiative in 2014 by TPOPP Wichita, awareness has grown, including through showings of Atul Gawande’s “Being Mortal” documentary. MSSC members Drs. Terry Merrifield, Barbara Coats and Kim Hartwell are active on TPOPP’s steering committee led by Carolyn Harrison.

“TPOPP is the second most important advance directive, after the durable power of attorney,” Dr. Coats said.

Overcoming interoperability issues with EMRs is important, as is standardizing how they flag advanced directives, Drs. Merrifield and Coats say. But improving EMRs is a technical problem, and no small one at that. The bigger, longer-term challenge is getting patients and physicians to have the care and end-of-life discussions in the first place. That will take building awareness and comfort with the discussions in the community, providing training and resources to doctors and others, and overcoming technical issues.

Dr. Merrifield encourages health care providers to consider the question: “What if there were a fairly simple way to greatly enhance the quality of care and life for your patients and the community? Would you be interested in that and be willing to talk with people about their values, goals, and preferences in their health care?”

Dr. Merrifield acknowledges the conversations can be difficult. Research shows that while three-quarters of physicians believe they should be the ones initiating end-of-life discussions, fewer than a third had any training to do so. She said discussions about health care durable power of attorney documents could serve as a gateway for doctors beginning uncomfortable talks with patients, as it involves a more straightforward legal discussion as opposed to the deeper values one of a TPOPP. In her practice, Dr. Merrifield made advance directive discussions a part of the annual physical.

Of course, filling out a TPOPP or any other directive is only helpful if the doctors or others treating a patient can see and know about it at crucial moments. For now, until EMRs and other modes of carrying that information improve, there’s no replacement for a patient or their representative carrying copies with them. And, Dr. Coats said, it wouldn’t hurt to take a picture of it with your phone so you – or your designee – have it right at hand.



Pate chosen for 2018 Leadership Kansas Class

In Feature by admin

Dr. Pate

Dr. Pate

Dr. Brian Pate, chairman of the KUSM-Wichita Department of Pediatrics, has been selected for the 2018 Leadership Kansas Class by the Kansas Chamber.

Dr. Pate is one of 40 Kansans chosen for the program. It is intended to develop leadership skills, provide information on key state issues, inspire graduates to stay involved in the social, business and political fabric of their communities, and connect them with members of its alumni network. Through October, participants will take part in three-day topical sessions in communities across the state. MSSC member Dr. Stephanie Kuhlmann went through the program last year.

Free skin cancer screenings May 5

In Community Health, Meetings/Events by admin

Local dermatologists will hold a free Wichita Area Skin Cancer Screening Clinic on Saturday, May 5, at KU School of Medicine-Wichita, 1010 N. Kansas.

The clinic is from 8 to noon at the east entrance. Dermatologists and staff will screen for signs of skin cancer. If a lesion is determined to be suspicious, the patients will be referred to their primary care doctor to get a referral for treatment.

The 30th annual clinic is sponsored by the American Academy of Dermatology, the MSSC and KUSM-Wichita. For info, call 316-777-6104.

Journal of Medicine in PubMed Central

In Community Health, KUSM-Wichita by admin

The Kansas Journal of Medicine, put out by the KUSM-Wichita Office of Research, recently became available through PubMed Central. PubMed Central, a free archive of biomedical and life sciences literature, is a searchable database of the United States National Library of Medicine’s extensive print journal collection.

The Kansas Journal of Medicine is the only statewide medical journal and publishes research, reviews, commentaries and cases studies, mostly from Kansas authors, including faculty residents and students. K. James Kallail, associate dean, said joining PubMed will make authors’ works more widely available.


In Membership by admin

Members of the Society who know a good and sufficient reason why any of the following applicants are not eligible for membership are requested to communicate with the Medical Society of Sedgwick County office.

[BC] Board Certified  [R] Residency  [F] Accredited Fellowship  [F*] Unaccredited Fellowship [AT] Additional Training
New Applicants

Charles W. Coffey, MD
[R] Internal Medicine
[R] Pediatrics
Freestate Connect
OFF: 500-7549 / FAX: 789-6210
4704 E Oakland St, 67218

Vu Thu Nguyen, DO
[BC] Family Medicine
Via Christi Clinic
OFF: 609-4501 / FAX: 636-4076
9211 E 21st St N 67206

Roster Updates

In Roster Updates by admin

Keep your 2018 Roster current by adding the information listed below and in the Membership section of this issue of the MSSC News:



New Mailing address
11310 E 21st St N #53
Wichita, 67206
Ellen Borst, DO
Richard Liepins, DO
J. Michael Patton, MD
John Womack, MD


Nataliya Biskup, MD
FAX: 688-7543

Rizwan Hassan, MD
NPI# 1174524003


James I. Fast, DO


John S. Thomas, MDmoving out of area
Nicholas Tomsen, MD