A Message from the Editor

I am pleased to fill some impressive shoes. Dr. Walter Wiggins had an amazing tenure as editor of the USMLE-Rx Web Team, and I encourage readers to check out some of his work (use the search box, and search by “Walter Wiggins”). His leadership as a student, author, and father has inspired everyone with the First Aid Team as well as readers from around the world. I also thank Dr. Tao Le for his mentorship and reminder that medicine is a profession encompassing all aspects of patient care, including equipping future generations to succeed.

The First Aid team has produced material on almost every subject ranging from the Basic Sciences to specialty boards like Orthopedics (a personal favorite). And of course, the ubiquitous and ever-evolving First Aid for the USMLE Step 1 (that’s the newest edition, keep an eye out for it!). This blog has enjoyed the opportunity of discussing equally broad subjects from app reviews to odes just begging for an acoustic overlay. We’ve discussed finances, depression and burnout, and the general work-life balance.

My goal for the coming year is to continue to provide interesting general posts on a variety of topics. This may be the only resource on the web providing guidance about everyday-life topics with specific emphasis on the unique struggles and challenges of being a medical student. This also includes discussions about the psychology of studying and different styles and approaches (plus the evolving app landscape to go with these techniques).

You’re also going to see a lot of content geared toward different groups of students. The future of providing enough care to our growing population is incorporating and collaborating with DOs and IMGs. Details about tests, accreditations, and new requirements are hard to come by and change frequently. Come back often and use our search function when you have specific questions (like what to do when the security camera at your Step 1 testing facility is out and you get sent home).

Finally, to compliment your handy-dandy review material, we offer mnemonics, diagrams, and practice test questions for your viewing pleasure. Take some time to refresh yourself on key topics, transfer them to your own sources, and join the discussion (see my favorite mnemonic in the comments). Qmax questions are provided for Step 1 and Step 2 every week. We are always refining the content.

I encourage you to join our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter where you can get more bite-sized pieces of material. Also, feel free to contact us with comments, suggestions, or feedback!


All the best,

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Mark Ard


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