The AMA “Members Move Medicine” series profiles a wide variety of doctors, offering a glimpse into the passions of women and men navigating new courses in American medicine.
On the move with: Ankush K. Bansal, MD, who is an internist in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
AMA member since: 2000.
What inspired me to pursue a career in medicine: My first inspiration in pursuing medicine was my mother’s battle with leukemia when I was just five years old and then again unsuccessfully when I was 12. My hope was to save people from having to witness someone go through that. My second inspiration was studying the sciences in high school, particularly anatomy, where I was fascinated by how life worked and what causes pathology.
How I move medicine: I move medicine in three ways:
- By educating patients and their families about the power of the human body to take care of itself through prevention and lifestyle modification, particularly nutrition. This has led me to study far more than I learned in medical school.
- By advocating at the state and national level for true health care (and not sick care) at the benefit first for patients and second for physicians to be able to practice.
- By being involved in organized medicine from the local to international levels with policy making, position statement generation, organizational advocacy and leadership.
- Representative of the Associate Member Section to the General Assembly of the World Medical Association.
- Treasurer of the Florida Chapter, American College of Physicians.
- Primary Care Representative and Board of Governors Member, Florida Medical Association.
- Only physician that is a Certified Forensic Litigation Consultant by the Forensic Expert Witness Association.
Advice I’d give to those interested in pursuing a career in medicine: Find a passion in the large expanse of medicine and use that to drive you along the journey from training and through practice. It makes this path in life more enjoyable, purposeful, and—frankly—tolerable, through the long arduous process of becoming and staying a physician.
How I give back to the community: I advocate for more medical research funding, access to care, and high-quality care for patients without unnecessary, unproven burdens on physicians. I also advocate for scientifically-based education and government policy regarding health and health care for patients. Being aware or raising your voice is not enough. You must fight for change and see it through.
Aspect of my work that means the most: The most enjoyable part of my work is having patients and families tell me that they finally understand their diseases in terms of cause, progression, and treatment. The interesting part is that most diseases I treat in the hospital are non-communicable, preventable, chronic diseases that are largely based on lifestyle choices due to misinformation from the media and government as well as inconsistent, but sensationalized research findings. Medicine is one of the very few professions where you can truly help, educate and change people’s lives.
My hope for the future of medicine: That one day, non-communicable chronic diseases can largely be prevented and/or cured through fact-based education, corporate responsibility, and government policy.
Visit MembershipMovesMedicine.com to learn more about other AMA members who are relentlessly moving medicine through advocacy, education, patient care and practice innovation, and join or renew today.