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Internal Medicine Interest Group of the Month: University of South Dakota

University of South Dakota

SD ACP Student Interest Group - Sioux Falls, 2009

The South Dakota ACP Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG) has had a huge resurgence in activity over the last two years. Our organizationís membership went from just a few student members in 2008 to 90 members this year, 45% of the medical students at Sanford School of Medicine (SSOM) at the University of South Dakota.

In 2008 we sent one of the largest delegations of students and physicians to ACP Leadership Day in Washington, DC. Building on that momentum, we have been a fiery bunch lately trying to develop our organization beyond our regular offerings of one-hour weekday lunch meetings and a few 2-3 hour weekend luncheons.

The IMIG is now actively involved in several community service projects in the state. In 2009 we started the 2M Project, which stands for Muscles for Movement. The goal of this program is to improve the amount of exercise that patients participate in during their daily lives. Our hope is that this project will decrease the number of patients suffering from diabetes and aid in the treatment of those already diagnosed with diabetes. Some research has shown that exercise alone can aid in prevention and treatment of obesity-related diseases. We will be implementing several arms of this project as we increase our funding and membership over the next several years. We have several target populations in mind:

1) Grade-school and middle-school aged children who are still malleable and willing to learn and are not as set in their ways. We are in the process of setting up in-school talks and programs with the local Boys and Girls Clubs in two communities.

2) American Indians on South Dakota reservations. This population is at a greater risk of many diseases in our state. We will work with the tribal leaders to provide education to their members on the benefits of exercise and nutrition.

3) The adult clinic patient population. We will be asking ACP physicians across the state to talk with their adult patients about the benefits of exercise and ask them to sign a contract whereby they agree to exercise for their health.

We have devised a presentation aimed at the younger populations and are also developing an exercise journal that program participants can use to detail pertinent educational facts on nutrition and exercise. We plan to monitor the success of our program via BMI measurements taken before the program and regularly afterwards. Results at the end of three years will be published.

The 2M Project is currently our largest project and we hope to be able to expand it to other states in the future. We are happy to see the rekindling of ACP spirit at SSOM and will continue to grow with increased membership and projects. We would like to thank the leadership of the South Dakota ACP Chapter for making the IMIG an integral part of the Chapter.

Joshua Hughes
President, South Dakota ACP Internal Medicine Interest Group
Sanford School of Medicine (SSOM) at the University of South Dakota, 2013
Email: jehughes@usd.edu

Back to July 2009 Issue of IMpact

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