Dr. Qasim Butt discusses nephrology, finances for medical students, & advice for physicians who are taking on nephrology students. Dr. Butt is a certified interventional nephrologist.
- [01:19] Dr. Butt’s Approach to Creating YouTube Videos
- [03:51] Why Interventional Nephrology
- [08:28] From Specialists, to Hospitalists, to Direct Primary Care
- [11:47] Cultivating Medical Side-Gigs
- [17:40] Advice for Physicians Who Are Taking on Nephrology Students
- [20:17] The Importance of Personal Branding
Chase DiMarco talks to Dr. Qasim Butt. Dr. Butt is a certified interventional nephrologist. He also has the popular YouTube channel, Your Kidney, Your Health and is on the board of the Texas Kidney Foundation. They discuss nephrology, physician finances for medical students, and advice for physicians who are taking on nephrology students.
Why Interventional Nephrology
As a medical student at St. Georgia’s in the Caribbean, Dr. Butt was unsure of his future specialty. Interventional nephrology was something that he picked up along the way, by making smart decisions at each step of his journey. After graduating, he did his internal medicine rotation from 2005 to 2008 at Louisiana State University Health Shreveport / School of Medicine (LSU). He liked nephrology, despite not loving it. LSU had openings for nephrology residents. So, he applied and got in.
Dr. Butt reminds students that it can be easier to get into a program at a hospital where you already have some experience. This is also where he obtained training for interventional nephrology, which involves putting in catheters, stents, etc. Currently, he alternates between clinical and interventional nephrology on a weekly basis.
Cultivating Medical Side-Gigs
Although money is not the most important thing, it does influence our lives. Dr. Butt reminds physicians that their revenue does not necessarily come from one stream i.e. their full-time job salary. For example, nephrologists can participate in dialysis units, and most physicians can obtain medical directorships, which require attending meetings a few times a year.
However, as physicians begin to diversify within their capacity as a physician, they need to acknowledge that they are donning “golden handcuffs.” Golden handcuffs refer to the phenomena of being tied up by a narrow type of revenue. For example, if a physician wants to either leave medicine, or they need to shift addresses, all their streams of revenue could disappear at once. This setup is not necessarily bad, but physicians must be aware of the situation in which they place themselves.
How to Choose a Practice to Join
Dr. Butt emphasizes the importance of observing the culture of a practice before joining it. If you are a younger physician looking to join a practice, you do not want to join a practice composed of physicians who are fifty to seventy years old. These older physicians likely have their kids already in college, and are not pursuing a growth model. They are preparing to retire. But you are just starting out, and you want to grow.
Advice for Physicians Who Are Taking on Nephrology Students
Nephrologists tend to be highly analytical people. This means that they often struggle to convey complex information in simple language. In order to cultivate the next generation of nephrologists to be passionate about nephrology, preceptors must learn to communicate better to the medical students on nephrology rotations. Dr. Butt tries to make his YouTube videos only three to five minutes long, with fun and simple language, to capture the attention of listeners. Preceptors must take a similar approach, and improve their communication skills.
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