Dr. Breasts

September 28, 2007


Medical school is hard.  Medical practitioner exams are hard.  Thats the point.  Would you want a doctor who couldn’t complete one of those things.  A woman at Harvard who has completed med school is facing controversy as she approaches her practitioner exam.

The student, Sophie C. Currier, 33, of Brookline, Mass., had sued the National Board of Medical Examiners after it denied her request for more than the standard 45 minutes of allotted breaks during the nine-hour exam, which she will take over two days.

She said she risked medical complications if she did not nurse her 4-month-old daughter, Lea, or pump breast milk every two or three hours.

In overturning a ruling that denied Ms. Currier the additional 60 minutes of break time she requested, Judge Gary Katzmann said yesterday that she needed the extra time so she could be on “equal footing” with men and nonlactating women taking the test.

Initially it seems understandable that she needs extra time, because it would be potentially painfully distract to not properly lactate.  Additionally you cannot go back on the test, so she would not be able to change answers as a result of the additional time.  It must have been hard enough to finish school and prepare for this test while pregnant.  But then something struck me in the article.

Ms. Currier has already received some accommodation from the board for dyslexia and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. She can take the test over two days instead of one, for example.

This is so typical of our “entitlement generation”.  She is already receiving a lot of help/compensation for her problems.  But she is dissatisfied and wants more.  I am not sure I want a doctor, even one that went to Harvard, that constantly needs exceptions and special treatment.

NY Times Article