Seth LandefeldDr. Seth Landefeld, MD, Professor and Chair, UAB Department of Medicine

I write with a heavy heart, and with hope that each of you is faring as well as possible in these challenging times. Nothing about COVID-19 has been easy, but our residency program is a bright light in the midst of this national pandemic. I am unspeakably proud of how resilient and caring this community of physicians has proved to be, as you will see in this issue of Letters to Tinsley.

UAB CMR webLTTPictured L to R: Jonathan Kalehoff, Ali Johns, Jordan Crocker, and Stephen Stuart“No greater opportunity, responsibility, or obligation can fall to the lot of a human being than to become a physician.” This quote from Dr. Tinsley Harrison rings true to us now more than ever.  Writing our farewell this year is different. We are saying goodbye from afar, via Zoom, and at a distance at least six feet apart.  

by Ryan Goetz, MD (PGY-1)

UAB CMR webLTTDuring the COVID19 pandemic, I had the opportunity to care for patients in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU). The MICU has long been one of my favorite areas of the hospital. The level of medical complexity challenges us to learn and grow, and the patient-family interactions give us a look into what it really means to be human. It causes us to face difficult questions about life and death. The COVID19 pandemic caused me to reflect on the important things life. Watching young, previously healthy patients go from living their normal everyday life, to being intubated, sedated, and proned in the blink of an eye. It begs the question, am I next?

by Alex Martirossian, MD (PGY-3)

UAB CMR webLTTThe UAB Department of Medicine is fortunate to have such incredible and accomplished faculty, and one of the legends within the Division of General Internal Medicine (GIM) is Dr. Gustavo Heudebert. Ever since joining the UAB faculty in 1995, he has touched the lives of countless medical students, residents, and faculty through his extraordinary gift as a clinician educator. 

by Sal Kamal, MD (PGY-3)

UAB CMR webLTT“Please, can I see her? I just want to hold her hand.”

“I’m so sorry.”

It was my last shift working the COVID ICU, and I was caring for Ms. Robins, a middle-aged woman who was critically ill from an unidentifiable respiratory infection. These days, that meant she was classified as a PUI, or a “person under investigation” for coronavirus.

by Dan Scullin, MD (PGY-3)

UAB CMR webLTTPoint of Care Ultrasound (POCUS) has been increasingly used by internists for diagnostic purposes as well as to assist with invasive procedures. If you haven't heard, UAB has added a new interest group that focuses on ultrasound and its application. The interest group is headed by Dr. Rob Smola, an Assistant Professor of General Internal Medicine at UAB and an Academic Hospitalist at the Birmingham, VA. He was gracious enough to sit down and give some insight into the new POCUS Interest Group as well as his views on how POCUS has informed his practice.  

by Scott Griffin, MD (PGY-2)

UAB CMR webLTTI originally wrote this as a reflection during the COVID-19 crisis that has defined the second half of my PGY-2 year. I think to understand this reflection, it’s important to recognize the context. I still remember that day in 6th grade. Walking from my science class across the hall to my social studies class. My teacher had the TV on, which felt like contraband at the time, but I didn’t realize at first why.