Steven Mandel, MD
- Clinical professor of neurology at Hofstra-Northwell, and adjunct clinical professor of medicine at the NY Medical College
- Past president, New York Occupational and Environmental Medical Association
- Alumni board, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York City
- AMA-SPS liaison, State of New York
- AMA Ambassador
Specialty: Neurology and neurophysiology
Q: You have developed programming based on your interests that intersect with medicine. How do these skills and knowledge help senior physicians?
A: Since retirement, I have developed programs to include mental and physical health and well-being. These programs are titled "Imagine Life," and are presented under the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs. There are modules for families to meet together in a group setting to discuss issues such as healthy aging, response to trauma, mental and physical illness along with suicide and behavioral and substance use addiction. I have facilitated webinars on imposter syndrome and burnout with colleagues, medical societies and residents and students. I prepared a proclamation with colleagues on spirituality that was presented at the AMA meeting in June.
Over the last 40 years of practice, I have learned the value of the doctor patient relationship. In neurology, at the time of the patient’s initial visit, the diagnosis may be allusive. It has been my responsibility and commitment to acknowledge the patient’s concerns and offer support and compassion.
Q: How did you get started serving as an AMA Ambassador to the AMA?
A: I became an Ambassador of the AMA because I appreciated the message of organized medicine being a unified voice of physicians for the health and welfare of physicians. Every voice counts and together we are the representatives of the best quality of health care that our nation can provide. We bring together our own wellness and challenges in life and we take care of ourselves and help others. We speak as a unified group of physicians who can relate to the public and to elected officials. We educate those outside of the medical field.
Q: What have you enjoyed most about serving as a liaison from New York State to the Senior Physicians Section at the AMA?
A: As a liaison from the SPS to New York State, I have been in touch with hundreds of physicians explaining the value of the AMA. As physicians age, they will need to make decisions, and stop, slow down and develop new interests that include community service and health and family issues. Physicians feel very isolated and are afraid to make decisions because of loss of identity. By being a member of the AMA when they retire at a very low cost, they are contributing in ways that are meaningful. They also have colleagues to give them support.
We are always called doctor but being a member of the AMA gives them a feeling of being part of a group as an equal partner. I have also learned that despite generational differences we can learn from the younger group of doctors.
Q: Along with your wife, you formed a foundation for research in neuroscience for medical students at Einstein. Can you tell us how you developed your ideas on family and community service for these programs?
A: My wife and I established the Drs. Steven and Heidi Mandel Foundation at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (AECOM) in Neuroscience. Medical students for the last 5+ years have developed projects of science, social justice, DEI, clinical practice and education are awarded scholarship money. In addition, we fund a student for their gap year. Last year a student pursued a neurology residency and another a neurosurgery residency.
Although the program is based on merit, we look at the diversity of the population of students, along with those from undeserved communities. We meet with the students and acknowledge their leadership and initiative, not only in science but in the area of social justice.
Have information about SPS members doing great work? Email us at [email protected].