Opinions

Brian Lefchak, MD, MPH Brian Lefchak, MD, MPH (1 Posts)

Contributing Writer

NewYork-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center


Brian Lefchak graduated summa cum laude in biology from Drexel University in Philadelphia and graduated from the MD/MPH program at Drexel University College of Medicine. He is currently a resident physician in pediatrics at NewYork-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center planning to pursue pediatric emergency medicine and informatics. In addition to being a lifelong musician and performer, his hobbies include photography, history, foreign travels and soccer.

The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the position of associated organizations.




In COVID We Mistrust

In the pandemic’s wake, we witnessed the explosion of viral social media content such as Plandemic, an alternate exaggerated narrative which sought to perpetuate the types of claims one would expect from the title. These kinds of conspiracy theories have always existed in many different shapes and forms; however, COVID-19 struck at a time when society was suffering from a pre-existing condition of deep mistrust.

Medicine-Pediatrics Residents Call for Anti-Racism in Health Care

Recent events have highlighted a systemic problem within our world, our country, our state, and our community. People of color fight an uphill battle in every facet of life, at every socioeconomic level. The COVID-19 pandemic is no exception — as we all know by now, patients from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are disproportionately afflicted. But the spotlight has refocused on a chronic pandemic: systemic racism.

Bosses of Us: Doctors, Administrators, and the Profit Motive

The pandemic points to an important lesson: a rejection of traditional leadership structures, at least those that feed into a profit-based medical system, may be necessary in order to create a different world. The union provides such a framework, vesting power in a collective of voices. But in order to succeed at the level of a union, physicians need to let their voices join that collective — they cannot expect a delegate or representative alone to do the entire job, just as we might expect a program director to guide us in the right direction.

Can Disease Be Tragically Beautiful? A Resident Physician Reflects on COVID-19

Has social distancing paradoxically made us closer? Can disease be tragically beautiful? I pondered these questions as I reminisced over the past few weeks working on one of the medicine floors in my hospital, grappling with these thoughts almost every moment as I have witnessed the world respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Can Empathy Be Taught, or Is It Innate?

In medical school, I was taught to sit at eye level when speaking to patients, ask how they would prefer to be addressed, and ask open-ended questions to allow them to express themselves. I learned to interject with “That must be really difficult for you,” or “I can only imagine how that makes you feel,” as a way to show empathy and foster better connection with patients.

Tears for the Warriors Without Armor in the Fight Against COVID-19

It is difficult to put into words the level of frustration and despair that I have felt over the last few days watching the schizophrenic national response to this COVID-19 crisis and its detrimental effects on the work conditions of my colleagues. As an internal medicine physician working in Utah, it feels like it is the calm before the storm as emergency room and urgent care volumes are down as people try to socially distance to correct the spread of this virus. Other areas of the country are not so lucky.

Justin Jones, MD Justin Jones, MD (5 Posts)

Attending Physician Guest Author and Contributing Writer Emeritus

Intermountain Healthcare


Justin Jones is an outpatient primary care physician in Utah. He completed his residency in 2018 in Colorado and wrote for in-House during residency. He blogs at Residency Hacker.