March 4, 2013
Funding for OSU Medical Center key topic at Osteopathic Medicine Day
OSU Medicine students and faculty join osteopathic physicians at the state Capitol
Medical students with the Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine will meet with state legislators and governmental leaders during Osteopathic Medicine Day on March 6 to discuss health care issues and advocate for the osteopathic profession.
Approximately 30 OSU medical students will participate in the 39th annual event hosted by the Oklahoma Osteopathic Association at the state Capitol in Oklahoma City.
"Osteopathic Medicine Day is an exciting day for OSU medical student because we have the opportunity to speak face-to-face with state leaders about our concerns that affect the future of osteopathic medicine, both in training and practicing," said Todd Thomas, a second-year medical student.
Thomas plans to speak to legislators about funding for the OSU Medical Center and its importance for the success of students at OSU-CHS.
"Like many of my peers, I plan to train and practice in Oklahoma but without the medical center receiving funds from the state, our opportunities to train in Oklahoma are uncertain," said Thomas. "I will be advocating for OSU Medical Center to receive annual funding from the state to ensure it remains a quality training facility for OSU medical students."
OSU Medical Center is one of the largest osteopathic training facilities in the country, training more than 160 residents on an annual basis.
"Oklahoma has a desperate need to increase the number of primary care physicians, especially in the rural communities," said Thomas. "Without the medical center, we won't have a place to train physicians and our state's dire situation could become much worse."
Kayse Shrum, D.O., OSU Center for Health Sciences provost and the dean of the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine, and William Pettit, D.O., associate dean of rural health, will join the students in their efforts.
"As future physicians and community leaders, our students understand they must advocate for their profession," said Shrum. "Osteopathic Medicine Day is a chance for them to meet with state policy makers and leaders from the Oklahoma Osteopathic Association, learn about important issues, use their personal experiences and voice concerns to state officials."
Before meeting with legislators, the medical students will meet with physician members of the OOA. LeRoy E. Young, D.O., OOA chair of Bureau on Legislation, will provide a briefing of current issues.
Osteopathic Medicine Day begins with an official ceremony at 1:15 p.m. on the second floor of the Rotunda.
Todd Thomas heads the OSU-COM Political Action Committee with Jennifer Thomas, OMS-II. The committee helped organize the Oklahoma City event with members of the OOA.