What’s ahead for young urologists

Education and training may prepare future urologists for practice, but are they prepared for the workplace and what’s to come?


Sammy Elsamra, MD
Sammy Elsamra, MD

It’s what early career urologists and trainees don’t learn in school that can impact their work/life balance and career goals. Saturday’s Young Urologists Forum, “Top 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Practicing: Finding Purpose, Combating Burnout, Leading Boldly,” addresses just that. The forum features an expert panel comprised of national leaders in various stages of their careers who will address topics related to successfully transitioning from residency to early practice and from early practice to mid-career practice. Sammy Elsamra, MD, is an associate professor at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson medical school and the chair of the AUA’s Young Urologists Committee.

“We’ve all experienced a challenging year-and-a-half, and a lot of folks have been impacted by COVID-19. They need to discuss wellness, their purpose, career goals, cases, family balance and how to make the most of our lives,” Dr. Elsamra said.

Featured panelists include Kyle A. Richards, MD, FACS, who will discuss “Finding Purpose and Balance,” Sarah E. McAchran, MD, FACS, who will present “How to Combat Burnout & Be Resilient” and Stephen Y. Nakada, MD, FACS, who will present “Leading Boldly.” Dr. Richards is associate professor of urology, Dr. McAchran is associate professor of urology,  and Dr. Nakada is professor and chair of urology, all at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in Madison.

According to Dr. Elsamra, it is important to remember that many early career challenges are different than those challenges for more established urologists. Early career urologists are commonly focused on building a practice and growing it. Mid-career urologists are often plagued by burnout, he said.

“Sure, it’s nice to grow and be busy, but sometimes it gets out of control,” Dr. Elsamra said. “They say when you look at your career goals, you should start by keeping the end in mind.”

According to Dr. Richards, the Young Urologists Forum promises to inspire and motivate early career professionals and help them in their common struggles as young urologists. Additionally, the forum will present the Young Urologists of the Year Award and close with the sponsor symposium, “Death of the Nuclear Renal Scan: Parenchymal Volume Measurements via Software Analysis and Predicting Renal Function after Kidney Cancer Surgery.” The symposium, sponsored by FujiFilm will be presented by Steven Campbell, MD, PhD, professor of surgery, residency program director and vice chair of urology at Cleveland Clinic.

“The take-away from the forum is that there is hope,” Dr. Richards said. “Physicians are leaders by definition and can work to improve their situations through thoughtful leadership strategy.”

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