Here’s yet another example of the law of unintended consequences — one that could have a harmful impact on the already-struggling U.S. health care system.
About 260 foreign medical students could lose their medical residency assignments as a result of the Trump Administration’s order banning travel to the U.S. from seven countries.
The Association of American Medical Colleges says the order could have a far-reaching effect on medical research and may also ultimately cause problems for patients in the U.S.
The organization released a statement saying that it’s “deeply concerned” about the order, which has been challenged in the U.S. courts and has been suspended — for now.
“International graduates play an important role in U.S. health care, representing roughly 25 percent of the workforce,” the statement said. “Current immigration pathways —including student, exchange-visitor, and employment visas — provide a balanced solution that improves health care access across the country ….”
Atul Grover, executive vice president at the AAMC, told Kaiser Health News: “These are doctors. They could be exceptional practitioners and I don’t know if you want to stop them from coming here and serving their patients.”
The countries are Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
One medical student from Sudan described the turn of events as “very devastating. Because you are born in an unfortunate situation, you have to pay the price for that.”
In addition to the 260 applicants for a residency slot — the positions were set to be announced March 17 — others who are already involved in a residency program fear that they won’t be able to complete it.
About a quarter of doctors in the U.S. are foreign-born, according to KHN. AAMC projects that there will be a shortage of 94,700 physicians in the U.S. by 2025.
CRACKING THE CANCER CODE: Certain kinds of hard-shelled nuts can help fight cancer, new research shows.
Macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds and pistachios help initiate “programmed cell death” in cancer cells, researchers found, although it’s unclear whether their anti-cancer power is reduced by roasting.
That will require further study, they said.
The studies were conducted by Friedrich Schiller University Jena in Germany.
Image: pistachios could help in the fight against colon cancer and other types of the disease. (Credit: Wikimedia commons)