Students from the Midwestern University's Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine (CCOM) hosted the second annual "Student Interventions in Health Inequities" conference on the Downers Grove Campus. The conference was developed by the Midwestern University Student Osteopathic Medical Association (SOMA) chapter to increase medical students' knowledge about health disparities with a focus on how they can advocate for change. At the full-day conference, speakers with vast experience dealing with health inequalities addressed issues such as correctional medicine, LGBTQ health, poverty, mental health, and domestic violence. More than 60 medical students attended from CCOM, Rush University, Roosevelt University, and the University of Illinois at Chicago.
"I think it's important that medical students get some sort of health disparities training before they graduate, especially because factors like poverty, education, socioeconomic status, and a person's zip code have been shown to have a bigger impact on health than a person's genetic code," said Prarthana Pradeep, a second-year osteopathic medical student at Midwestern University and one of the organizers of the event. "I think it not only gives us a different perspective through which to look at our patients but also learn how to be an advocate in trying to address some of these factors," she added.