Oregon Medical Student Defense Advisor

Oregon is known for its beautiful national parks, its wild west past, and its unique food scene. It also happens to be home to Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine (OHSU) and Western University's College of Osteopathic Medicine (WUCOM), who both focus on training physicians who will fuel the clinical enterprise, conduct research, and provide patient-centered care to their community. Their expectations are as high as the mountain ranges in Oregon, and with such high expectations, some students might find it difficult to meet them. To pass, some students may even resort to means they wouldn't necessarily have in undergraduate classes. But your medical school is supposed to provide you with opportunities to redeem yourself. If you feel like your school is not providing those opportunities or you are being adjudicated for inappropriate behavior, an attorney advisor will be able to help.

Academic and Professionalism Policies for Oregon Medical Students

When a new school year starts, medical schools provide their students with new expectations and guidelines, which are usually laid out in their student handbooks. These rules will usually specify how the students are supposed to act while on campus and in their clinical clerkships, though the details will vary.

At OHSU School of Medicine, they expect their students to:

  • Act responsibly when acquiring and communicating scientific findings
  • Maintain a professional, mature, and sensitive relationship in all situations but especially with patients
  • Respond appropriately to emergencies
  • Refrain from cheating, copying work from another student, or plagiarizing
  • Prevent discriminating or disrespectful behavior when you witness it

If a student disobeys these rules, the medical school will refer them to a hearing committee to determine if they should be dismissed from the program, allowed to remediation a class, exam, or clinical clerkship, or if they should be punished in some other way. Alternative punishments may include anything from a warning letter and probation to suspension. It is essential you have a strategic defense or argument when entering into these proceedings. Working with an attorney advisor from the moment you learn of the recommendations will guarantee you the best possible outcome for your case.

Remediation at Oregon Medical Schools

At Oregon Medical Schools, their highest priority is to train physicians with a myriad of abilities and the hopes that they will work within the Oregon community. Because of this, they test their students consistently on both their professional capabilities and their medical and anatomical knowledge. No one wants to be known as the medical school that produces an unprofessional physician with no bedside manners who can't stitch properly.

To deliver such knowledgeable physicians to the community, WUCOM will allow its students to remediate a course, exam, or clinical clerkship. They also allow students to retake any subject on the COMAT exam, but students are responsible for the fees associated with it. In some cases, joining a remediation program may push back your graduation date. If a student is unable to complete the remediation program with a passing grade, they will be referred to the dismissal committee.

Unfortunately, while most medical schools offer remediation as an option, they don't express it to their students outright. This is why it's so important to become familiar with your particular student handbook. Knowing what rights you have and what rights the university is not providing to you are great first steps in determining whether you should pursue the program. If you know your medical school has a remediation program, and it hasn't been offered in its entirety to you, an attorney-advisor can help you request it.

Dismissal From an Oregon Medical Program

When the school year ends, an advancement committee will sit down and review every medical student's file to determine if they should move on to the next year, be required to remediation a course, exam, or clinical during the break, or be referred to the dismissal committee for further proceedings.

If you have been brought before the dismissal committee, it is really important to have a strategic defense in place to best advocate for yourself. Sadly, some students take these proceedings too lightly and are not prepared. An insufficient defense could result in several long-term consequences, including:

  • Finding a new medical school to admit you so you can continue your education
  • Not being admitted to reputable medical schools because of your track record at OHSU
  • Having to pay back large student loans without a physician's salary
  • Forced to start from zero credits if you do get into a new medical school because your credits are non-transferable
  • Mental health crises, including anxiety, depression, and panic attacks

It can be overwhelming to think about leaving medical school without your degree, but remember, attorney advisors will be able to build a strong defense and advocate on your behalf. You won't have to navigate these complex issues alone.

Appeals

Appeals are part of certain due process rights your medical school is supposed to provide you. These rights also include being placed on a remediation plan if needed and defending yourself during a dismissal proceeding. If, after your dismissal hearing, the committee determines that you should, in fact, be dismissed, you will be notified in writing, usually by mail. This letter will also spell out the appeals process to you – where to submit the appeal, what should be included, and the date the appeal is due.

Remember, an appeal is your last chance to preserve your dream of becoming a doctor at OHSU. If you submit it after the deadline and don't base it on a specific ground, you run the risk of losing it.

Due process rights are supposed to be non-negotiable; you just get them. But there are some instances where universities do not provide these rights to their students, allowing them to fall through the judiciary cracks. If you find that your university did not inform you of an appeals process or are overwhelmed by the idea of submitting an appeal on your own, an attorney-advisor can help. They will draft the appeal with you, alleviating that stress and anxiety.

Additionally, if your appeal is denied, an attorney advisor will be able to help you navigate a different approach with your medical school. For instance, they may contact the Office of General Counsel on campus and negotiate on your behalf. Most of the time, these negotiations have a better result than if you were to file suit against the school.

Oregon Medical Student Defense Advisor

Undergoing any type of hearing in medical school is a foreign experience, one you never thought you'd have to endure. He and the team at Lento Law Firm know that the best defense is a quick defense. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 to discuss your case or schedule a time online.

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If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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