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Program aims to ease Borderland's doctor shortage

By: Stephanie Guadian
EL PASO, Texas - The violence in Juarez is keeping doctors away from El Paso. Dr. Rabab Mohsin understands why some might be hesitant to move to the Borderland. Her first impression of the area came from the television news stories.

The violence that was going on in Juarez, the problems they were having with the border and the drugs, said Dr. Mohsin.

Still, that didnt stop Mohsin and Dr. Karla Quevedo from moving to El Paso. They were drawn to the area by a new fellowship at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at El Pasos division of cardiology in the internal medicine department. The program is attracting talented doctors looking to specialize in the field.

Cardiology fellowship is an incredibly competitive program. We are not hurting for candidates. We had over 470 candidates for two positions, said Dr. Debabrata Mukherjee.

By the end of summer, there will be six doctors in the fellowship program. Mohsin and Quevedo will both be in the group.

We have multiple cardiovascular risk factors, especially in our Hispanic population. That means diabetes and hypertension. Those are all related to cardiovascular disease. And our incidences are very high, said Dr. Quevedo.

It's a good place for doctors to learn. But it's the patients who may benefit the most.

The fellowship is an intermediary level so they are always present in the critical care units, the catheter labs and clinical areas. So, there are more eyes taking care of the patients and better care, said Dr. Mukherjee.

It's hoped once the physicians get a chance to live in El Paso, their perceptions will change and maybe they'll stay.

So, it's very different of course. I'm sure TV makes everything a little more dangerous than it might be. Here I see more of the people. I see the public, I see my patients and their families. That's what Im more involved in, and nd not really what's going on politically, said Mohsin.



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