Leadership

Members Move Medicine: Helping patients understand the diagnosis

Thumbnail

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: Amar H. Kelkar, MD, hematology-oncology resident, University of Florida Health Shands Hospital.

AMA member since: 2016.

What inspired me to pursue a career in medicine: I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t want to become a doctor. While none of my immediate family were physicians, I was most heavily influenced by my mother. She’s an occupational therapist by training. She had aspired to go to medical school, but was unable to because of cost and gender barriers.

How I move medicine: Every day, I strive to provide the most positive and empathetic medical care possible for my patients. My goal is to provide both physical relief and a sense of reassurance that helps assuage the worries they inevitably have. I also aspire to be the most reliable colleague and a leader on our health care team. On a global scale, I try to emphasize patient-centered medicine in daily practice and as an advocate.

Career highlights: Selection to the Gold Humanism Honor Society from my medical school, publishing an article in The New England Journal of Medicine, acceptance to a fellowship program in hematology and oncology at the University of Florida, selection to the American Society of Hematology Advocacy Leadership Institute, and election to the AMA Resident and Fellow Section governing council.

Advice I’d give to those interested in pursuing a career in medicine: Spend some time observing a passionate team of health care workers. Entering the field is a calling and a lifestyle choice. It requires many sacrifices on a personal level, but if you go into the field with recognizing both the realities and the possibilities, you’ll never look back.

Aspect of my work that means the most: My daily work is as an educator, both in the classroom and at the bedside. I feel most comfortable breaking down the complexities of medicine and the underlying biochemistry to help patients and their families understand how they can get to a better place from a health standpoint and comprehend the diagnoses we have provided them.

My hope for the future of medicine: A diverse medical community that is able to provide outstanding medical care to every person who needs it.

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.