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The Impact of Prescription Opioids in America

Elizabeth Kistler, M.D.  

UR SMD Class of 2016

The Impact of Prescription Opioids in America is a project I completed as a student in the Bioethics Pathway. I have created interactive, online learning modules for medical students. These modules explore the recent history of opioid prescribing in America and the considerable public health crisis that has emerged in the form of opioid misuse, abuse and overdose deaths over the past 30 years. The principles of bioethics are used as a framework to discuss questions around opioid prescribing for chronic non-cancer pain, specifically.

Participating in the Bioethics Pathway has undoubtedly added a richness to my medical education. Exploring topics in medicine through the humanities and bioethics provides a depth of understanding that I would not have gained from a clinical curriculum alone. The pathway provides an opportunity to work independently, think flexibly and create something unique – all skills that will be valuable when navigating the complexity and nuance of medical practice.

After graduation from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, I will begin a residency in psychiatry at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic/University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. I hope to work with adults recovering with serious mental illness in the outpatient setting.