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Ohsu Mph

Discussion in 'Public Health Degrees (Masters and Doctoral)' started by LA:), 03.30.04.

  1. LA:)

    LA:) Member

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    i'm currently applying for the MD/MPH at OHSU. clearly, it's primary care focus has helped to set up the preventative medicine program as one of the best. however, there is no school of public health--just a department, annexed to the med school. it's actually on a single floor of the campus services building. the MD/MPH only allows a concentration in epi/biostats, which is fine, i think. my only concern is that it may not be worth the extra year for an MPH at OHSU.

    would appreciate comments on OHSU public health
  2. exmike

    exmike NOR * CAL

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    I think that you are interested in public health then go ahead. If you feel the MPH will give you the skills to acheive your professional goals, then by all means. It seems that you're not sure.
  3. LA:)

    LA:) Member

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    thanks for your reply.
    my questions is really more about the value of an MPH from OHSU. whether or not i choose to do it is also a factor, but i just wanted to get a sense of how strong the program is.
  4. exmike

    exmike NOR * CAL

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    OHSU isnt an "Accredited" public health school, if that matters to you. You may or may not find that to be a problem in the future. Is the program integrated with your medical school studies?

    One possible option for you is to do a one year MPH between your 2nd and 3rd years at a different public health school. Then you can get the best of both worlds.
  5. traumamonkey

    traumamonkey mid-level resident

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    hi LA
    just one comment that i have taken to heart from my ohsu interview. the person i interviewed with is a prof at ohsu with a dual md/mph degree. he suggested that if i got in to ohsu and decided to go there that i should really consider getting the mph elsewhere. he said, "an mph is not an mph is not an mph" and that i should really find a good program and do it separately if ohsu is where i end up for med school.

    certainly that is only one opinion, but coming from someone who is there (and didn't get either of his degrees at ohsu) it is interesting.

    good luck
  6. LA:)

    LA:) Member

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    that's the same sense i got from my interviewers--not as explicitly as yours, but similar in that they did recognize that it is not the strongest program. thanks for your thoughts noami. thanks to you too, exmike.

    peace out
  7. LA:)

    LA:) Member

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    i should have written this earlier...

    the suggested program actually intersperses the mph classes throughout the regular med classes, with increasing frequency until your 4th year which you are expected to use solely for your mph classes & thesis. then you go back to rotations your 5th year. and the summer between 1st & 2nd years is supposed to be used for some kind of public health project (ie not lab) like a retrospective study of some sort.

    btw, exmike, how did you like the cal program?
  8. exmike

    exmike NOR * CAL

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    Ok that sounds pretty integrated. You're probably better off doing some research or away rotations during the time you would have to take those classes anyway.

    I loved going to Cal. The faculty is amazingly supportive and the students are even more amazing in their passion and dedication to public health. I couldnt imagine going into medicine without knowing what I now know from studying public health. I would certainly apply!

    As an aside, the "liberal" atmophere in the Bay Area of california seems to be conducive to public health since public health is an inherently political field of study.
  9. LA:)

    LA:) Member

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    yeah, i'm thinking this is true

    nice. will definitely consider.
  10. jds52

    jds52 New Member

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    :) Fascinating set of postings that I am finding quite helpful!! Just a couple of points to add for clarification if I may.

    First, the OHSU Program IS integrated although there is plenty of flexibility for students to do this in a way that works for them. The purpose of this integrated approach is to have students engaging in some study of public health at the same time they are studying medicine - with the idea that both will be learned differently (maybe more holistically?) than if studied alone.

    Second, the MPH program IS accredited - although not as a School of Public Health since it is not a School of Public Health. I'm not convinced that this adversely affects how an MPH degree is viewed - and I am certain it does not affect the quality of the education given in the OHSU Program.

    Finally, the program at OHSU focuses on Epidemiology and Biostatistics and requires a thesis. We do this NOT because we want to make everyone an epidemiologists or a biostatistician or even a researcher - but we want to graduate physicians who are well grounded - through both classroom study and applied experience - in the basic sciences of public health...who can take those skills into the clinical or health systems or program or policy arenas with whatever specialty interest and use them well.

    You may have noted the not so subtle change in pronoun :)...I am the person who does the MD/MPH interviews at OHSU and runs the Program. It is probably the very best job anyone could have - and one of my favorite parts is interviewing prospective students...and I am forever fascinated by how hat I say reaches folks :). The program at OHSU is NOT for everyone and it does not do everything...but what is DOES do it does quite well. So "an MPH is not an MPH is not an MPH" means not that our program is second rate - to the contrary we do a FIRST rate job of providing our graduates with good training in the fundamentals of the public health sciences. It means that we don't do ir have available everything students want - so if a student wants a heavy dose of International Health or Maternal and Child Health this is not the place to come. We do prepare folks quite well to go into those (and other) areas with a pretty rich tool box and we do have available experiences within various areas of public health - but we can't give extensive experiences in those fields simply because that isn't what we do.

    Sorry for going on and on...I hope folks find this helpful...and I'll look forward to any replies and welcome any questions about what we do - and about what we don't do.

    Thanks
  11. traumamonkey

    traumamonkey mid-level resident

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    thanks for the insight. i definitely think you've got a point on the quote i used (oops). i am very interested in international health and public policy, not biostats or epi--and i certainly didn't leave with the impression that ohsu was substandard on any level, but i agree that no school can meet everyone's needs...even if it is my beloved ohsu!

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