Community Health in the Rural Setting

Community Health in the Rural Setting: An interview with Dr. Stephen Martin

The Community Outreach Team of the Student Leadership Committee is proud to present the third blog in our series called “Faces of Community Health.” In this series, we interview healthcare professionals working in our communities to better understand how quality care is delivered in different settings.

This interview highlights the work of Dr. Stephen Martin, a rural family physician at Barre Family Health Center in Central Massachusetts where he has worked for eight years. Prior to starting at Barre, he served as a National Health Service Scholar at a rural community health center and a federal prison medical center. Dr. Martin describes his approach to delivering quality healthcare in the setting of rural Massachusetts, the challenges facing his local community, and his motivations for serving this patient population. (more…)

The Student Leadership Committee

View the 2016-2017 SLC Annual Report

The Student Leadership Committee (SLC) grew out of the student group that was instrumental in advocating for the creation of the Center for Primary Care. The SLC’s purpose is to empower and train HMS students to become leaders in primary care practice, education, research, advocacy, and community engagement. It pursues these goals through monthly leadership trainings and focused projects related to primary care advocacy, education, innovation, and culture at Harvard Medical School and beyond. (more…)

Faces of Community Health

An Interview with Community Health Worker Francisca Guevara

The Community Outreach Team of the Student Leadership Committee is proud to present the second post in our ongoing series entitled “Faces of Community Health.” In this series, we interview healthcare workers  in the community to better understand how quality care is delivered within this setting.

Our second interview in the series is with Francisca Guevara, the Associate Director for Community Health and Outreach at Charles River Community Health Center. She was very excited to speak to us about what community health work means for her and our abbreviated interview [edited for clarity] is below: (more…)

Innovation & Entrepreneurship Pop-Up Mentor Hours

Looking to speak with professionals in entrepreneurship?  You’re in luck!  During the month of October, we have four mentors coming to the Harvard Medical School campus.  This is a great opportunity to meet with alumni, investors and entrepreneurs and ask career questions or even pitch an idea.

Time slots fill up quickly and are first-come first-serve so sign up today!

Location: Harvard Medical School Campus (Longwood)

Sign-up here

Asad Butt: Friday, October 20th 1:30 – 3:30pm

Asad Butt Is a Partner with LearnLaunch Accelerator, an education technology focused startup program. At LearnLaunch Accelerator, he oversees day-to-day activities, program creation and implementation, and sourcing of the edtech startups. Asad works with investors, mentors, strategic educational partners, and educators to help edtech startups in LearnLaunch Accelerator get the resources they need to grow their companies. Asad is a media and tech professional with 15 years of experience working in both the creative and business sides of startups, media production companies, non-profit organizations, and broadcast news outlets. Asad earned an M.B.A., an M.S. in Media Ventures, and an M.S. in Broadcast Journalism from Boston University and holds a B.S. in Mathematics from Bates College.

Christina Purpura: Friday, October 27th 1:30 – 3:30pm

Christina Purpura is a Senior Manager within Managed Markets at Sunovion Pharmaceuticals – a subsidiary of DSP. She develops and executes pricing, contracting and managed markets commercialization and launch strategies for Sunovion’s inline and pipeline portfolio. Prior to Sunovion, she worked as a strategy consultant to patient advocacy organizations, professional societies, and the biopharma and medtech industries. Christina holds her MPH from Brown University School of Public Health and a BA in Psychology from the University of Rochester.

Eric Wisch: Wednesday, October 25th 1:30 – 3:30pm

Eric Wisch is the COO of Cram Fighter, an education technology venture that helps students become the best versions of themselves by enabling them to be more efficient and better manage their time. Prior to his position at Cram Fighter, Eric served as a Director of Venture Development at Redstar Ventures, where he led various investment research and venture development initiatives. Through an organization called Development Innoventures Salon, Eric advised emerging impact entrepreneurs attempting novel market or technology-based solutions to intractable problems in the developing world. Eric received his undergraduate degree from the University of Rochester. Following his undergraduate studies, Eric was awarded a Kauffman Entrepreneurial Year Scholarship to study the commercial feasibility of emerging diagnostic genetic technologies.


Krishna Yeshwant: January 17th, February 5th, March 9th, May 4th

Dr. Krishna Yeshwant is a physician, programmer, and entrepreneur who has been working with GV since its inception. He first joined Google as part of the New Business Development team. Prior to Google he helped start an electronic data interchange company that was acquired by Hewlett-Packard and a network security company that was acquired by Symantec. He also co-authored the business plan for Diagnostics For All, which won both the Harvard Business School and MIT $100k business plan competitions. Previously, Krishna published several book chapters and journal articles in the field of computer-guided surgery, completed research in tissue engineering, and developed and licensed multiple surgical devices. He has worked with the technology transfer offices of MIT, Harvard, and Massachusetts General Hospital. Krishna has a B.S. in computer science from Stanford University. He also earned an M.D. from Harvard Medical School, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and completed his residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA where he continues to practice.

Please reach out to if you have any questions or suggestions for future guests.


Perspectives in Entrepreneurship: It’s All in How You Iterate

Session Three: Featuring Tom X. Lee MD, MBA

Tuesday, June 20th 2017
5:00 – 6:00pm
Networking and Refreshments 6:00-6:30pm

240 Longwood Avenue: Building C
Cannon Room 114

Mark your calendars! Come join us for an interactive session with Tom X. Lee, MD, who will guide us through the journey of identifying a need, all the way to designing a product optimized for the intended customer and market. This talk, followed by Q&A and networking, will explore the rigorous processes demanded of any entrepreneur, focused either on translating an idea from the lab or a clinic, into a successful venture.



Agents of Change

The Abundance Agents of Change Challenge Grants charge Harvard students, in partnership with local community health centers, to create and pursue innovations in primary health care delivery. The innovations must be designed for populations served by community health centers. The program connects HMS students, community health clinics, physicians-in-training from Harvard-affiliated hospitals, and members of the Harvard University graduate schools to work toward a shared mission of improving primary care for the underserved.


Uniting Story with Strategy: Relational Leadership Development at the Primary Care Progress Leadership Summit

I arrived a few minutes late to the 5th annual Gregg Stracks Primary Care Progress Leadership Summit in Cambridge, MA on a humid Saturday morning this past August expecting to sneak into the back and slide into a seat.

I stepped through the glass door to the general meeting area and was immediately taken aback by the sound of blaring trombones and the sight of energized dance moves from the Primary Care Progress staff. The conference participants were standing, clapping, and laughing; some were even dancing. It was clear that the Primary Care Progress Leadership Summit wasn’t a typical conference. (more…)

Reflections on 5 Years of Transforming Primary Care

On October 20, 2016, the Center for Primary Care celebrated five years of excellence in primary care. Held at the Harvard Club of Boston, the 5th Year Anniversary Gala was a moment for the Harvard primary care community to commemorate the Center’s work across HMS and the greater Boston community. Though the Center’s achievements are well known to many, it is impossible to understand its significance and the magnitude of its journey without first understanding its origin. (more…)

Equal Treatment: Restoring and Expanding Medical and Social Care for Substance Use Disorders


Welcome to Primary Care Considered, the blog of the Student Leadership Committee at the Center for Primary Care. Featured monthly in the Center’s newsletter, this section will highlight the projects, activities, and past successes of the SLC. Please join us at our events and share your thoughts!

In this post, former SLC member Helen Jack shares her experiences as an advocate for the restoration and expansion of substance use disorder treatment facilities in Massachusetts. Following the closure of the Long Island Bridge, students from Massachusetts medical schools came together to found the organization Medical Students for Long Island, which has worked to expand access to substance use treatment and to improve medical student education around substance use disorders.  

A long-standing interest in substance use and mental health drove me to attend medical school. Here I have found a community of like-minded peers who are eager to stand together to improve substance use disorder education and care.

Twenty-three million Americans suffer from a substance use disorder (SUD). To put that into perspective, 29 million Americans suffer from diabetes. Both are chronic, potentially fatal diseases that need regular medical monitoring and management, and both can often be prevented through appropriate interventions. (more…)

Agents of Change – Final Showcase Presentation

On Monday, April 25 the third cohort of the annual Agents of Change Challenge Grant presented their work and achievements of the past 15 months. After kicking off in February 2015 at a snowy retreat in Andover, Massachusetts, the MOMS (Medical Students Offering Maternal Support) and Reach teams had built strong partnerships with their respective community health centers, Dimock and MGH Revere, and made tangible impact in the communities they serve. (more…)




Students aim to boost health and decrease hospitalization among homeless

“Sullivan is part of a student team trying to develop strategies to improve health outcomes for homeless individuals while decreasing their reliance on emergency department visits and hospital stays. It’s an 18-month project being conducted in partnership with the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP). The Harvard students are being funded through an Agents of Change grant from Harvard’s Center for Primary Care. Agents of Change grants charge Harvard students to develop innovations in primary health care delivery, in partnership with community health centers.”

Read the full storywhich originally appeared in Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health News.

Faces of Community Health

The Community Outreach team of the Student Leadership Committee is proud to present the inaugural blog post in our series called “Faces of Community Health.” In this series, we will interview healthcare workers that work in the community to better understand how quality care is delivered within this setting.

Our first interview in the series is with Beatriz Lopes, a community healthcare worker (CHW) at Charles River Community Health Center in Brighton, Massachusetts. Prior to becoming a CHW, Ms. Lopes worked as an outreach worker for the Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers (MAPS), focusing on promoting tobacco cessation in the Portuguese speaking population. Here, Ms. Lopes describes her responsibilities as a community health worker and motivations for doing this work.

From Head to Toe: Integrating Oral and Primary Health Care in the Dental Clinic

Welcome to Primary Care Considered, the blog of the Student Leadership Committee at the Center for Primary Care. Featured monthly in the Center’s newsletter, this section will highlight the projects, activities, and past successes of the SLC. Please join us at our events and share your thoughts!

In this post, SLC member and Harvard School of Dental Medicine (HSDM) student Lily Liu shares her experience as a fourth year student mentor to first year dental students participating in the new Foundational Continuity Clinic (FCC) at HSDM. In this clinic, first year and fourth years students work together to integrate the oral and primary health care of patients, with supervision by both Dental and Primary Care Medicine preceptors. The goal is to provide total, person-centered care for HSDM patients, and an innovative integrated learning opportunity for students at all stages of their training.


The Family Medicine Congressional Conference

On April 11-12, faculty member Dr. Kathe Miller and students Andrew Foley and Mark Herzog traveled to Capitol Hill to represent Harvard Medical School at the annual Family Medicine Congressional Conference. During the first day, they met with family physicians from across the country to discuss the American Academy of Family Physician’s (AAFP) legislative priorities for the upcoming year and share how these priorities resonated with their clinical practice and education. On day two, they traveled to the Hill as part of the Massachusetts delegation to discuss these priorities with their Representatives and Senators. (more…)

Going Places: Students Gather to Celebrate an Education in Primary Care

Spring signals new beginnings, making it the perfect time to honor Harvard Medical School’s graduating students who will be pursuing careers in primary care and family medicine. On April 22, 2016, graduating students, staff, and others affiliated with the Center for Primary Care gathered in Gordon Hall to celebrate their successes and toast the future. (more…)

Doing Our Part: The Crucial Role of Students in Addressing the Massachusetts Opioid Crisis

In this post, SLC member Siva Sundaram, representing the Advocacy Subcommittee, shares what his team has been doing to address the opioid epidemic ravaging Massachusetts. Despite increasing attention to the crisis in the media and the Governor’s office, there are few instructors with the knowledge and experience available to provide skills-based training for health professions students. Despite these challenges, Siva lays out what each of us can do as students—today—to make a difference.  (more…)

Working Better, Together: Interprofessional Education, Training, and Practice

Welcome to Primary Care Considered, the blog of the Student Leadership Committee at the Center for Primary Care. Featured monthly in the Center’s newsletter, this section highlights the projects, activities, and past successes of the SLC. Please join us at our events and share your thoughts!

In this post, SLC member and BSN/MSN student of MGH Institute of Health Professions, Victoria Hill, shares her personal experience working as a community health worker on an interdisciplinary primary care team, and how this experience informed her pursuit of nursing and her interest in the Interprofessional (IP) Subcommittee on the SLC. Victoria shares successes from the IP subcommittee’s first year on the SLC and her hopes for integrating multidisciplinary collaboration into all of the SLC’s work in the coming years.


Faces of Family Medicine

Last Tuesday night, May 17, the HMS Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG) and Center for Primary Care took another step toward building a home for family medicine at Harvard. Over forty students and family physicians gathered for the inaugural Faces of Family Medicine Mentoring Dinner held in the Joseph B. Martin Lounge. The dinner connected students with family medicine mentors who represented a wide array of career paths within this unique field of primary care. (more…)

Teaching Medical Students to Teach: Primary Care Considered


Welcome to Primary Care Considered, the blog of the Student Leadership Committee (SLC) at the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care. Featured monthly in the Center’s newsletter, this section will highlight the projects, activities, and past successes of the SLC. Please join us at our events and share your thoughts!

Teaching Medical Students to Teach

In this post, SLC member Lydia Flier shares her experiences with the current state of near-peer teaching on the wards, and what can be done to improve it. Working with faculty from the Center for Primary Care, Lydia’s Scholars in Medicine project involved the development and implementation of a pilot fourth year elective that saw senior students teaching first-year medical students in a primary care setting. She shares the impetus for this program, and preliminary results from the pilot program evaluation.  (more…)

The Student Leadership Committee 2015 Annual Report

The SLC Annual Report includes the committee’s contributions to Harvard Medical School and to the field of Primary Care. The SLC believes in the power of students as leaders, and their ability to make positive changes within the community.

View SLC Annual Report

A Letter To Premedical Students: Stay The Course

This article originally appeared in Forbes.

The holidays are now long over and college students everywhere are beginning to return to campus after spending several weeks away at home.

Many of you were subjected to an earful of career advice—both solicited and unsolicited.

If you are an aspiring physician, there is a strong likelihood that you heard an increasingly familiar call from well-meaning relatives and friends: Don’t do it.

They tell you some version of the following:

Medicine isn’t what it’s used to be. The training is too long and intense. The work is no longer satisfying. The pay isn’t good for the amount of work and the debt you must incur. There is too much regulation, too much paperwork, and too much frustration. If I had to do it all over again…I wouldn’t…and neither should you. (more…)

A Chronic Disease Management Student-Faculty Collaborative Practice: Educating Students

This article originally appeared in Academic Medicine.

Clinician educators must inspire future clinicians to practice primary care in a dynamic environment. This need is fueled by burden of chronic disease, an aging population, and an increase of new patients in the wake of health care reform.

The Crimson Care Collaborative, a student-faculty collaborative network at Harvard, aims to expand such educational opportunities and improve patient control of chronic disease.

Read More

A New Era for Residency Training in Internal Medicine

This article originally appeared in JAMA Internal Medicine and is co-authored by Center faculty member Sara Fazio.

Health care system reform and practice transformation focuses on care delivered outside the hospital and places greater emphasis on primary care. As a result of this change, resident practices are being redesigned to produce doctors who can be successful in today’s health care environment. (more…)

Student Opportunities

Learn about the exciting student opportunities available through the Center for Primary Care!

Why I’m Becoming a Primary Care Doctor

This article was originally featured in The Atlantic

“The U.S. has a shortage of family physicians, but many med students avoid the specialty, stigmatizing it as uninteresting.”

Center faculty and Primary Care Progress president Andrew Morris-Singer is featured in the article.

My Internship at the Center

While working as an intern at the Center for Primary Care I had the opportunity to see the primary care field from a new, more well informed, and more evaluation- and innovation-based point of view. As a rising junior at Smith College in Northampton, MA, majoring in dance, minoring in chemistry, the Center was particularly interesting to me because I am considering a career as a primary care physician or a midwife. The Center’s mission is to improve the health of our communities through transformation in primary care practice and education and I was given many opportunities (including the aforementioned meetings) to participate and work with team members from every area of the organization. After ten weeks at the Center, the top five things I have learned are:


Students Seeking a Mentor

Students, are you seeking a mentor in family medicine, internal medicine, or primary care? If so, check out the Center’s mentors in family medicine, med peds, geriatrics, pediatrics, and internal medicine!