The Zach Highley Show podcast

#30 Hematologist/Oncologist Interview - End of Life, Breaking Bad News, and Lifestyle

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Amy Mackenzie, MD, grew up in Los Angeles but fled the scene in 1994 after college in rural New York to live and work in Japan for 3 years. She decided to pursue medicine at that time and headed back to the states to finish up pre-med work while working for the Japanese Consulate in Los Angeles. She then moved to Philadelphia in 2000 to work and apply to med school, ultimately enrolling at MCP-Hahnemann (now Drexel). After a year as part-time faculty at the med school, she went on to 3 years of IM residency at Temple and subsequently worked as a hospitalist at Fox Chase for a year between residency and fellowship. She completed heme/onc fellowship at Jefferson in 2013 and then became the first oncologist to do a geriatrics fellowship at Jefferson. She has 4 board certifications: internal medicine, hematology, oncology and geriatrics. She is an associate professor and a fellow of the American College of Physicians, actively participates in an older adults task force with ASCO (Amercian Society of Clinical Oncology) and sits on the board of the newly formed American Academy of Geriatric Oncology. Welcome to the show!


0:00 - Intro

1:17 - Statistics About Oncology

2:24 - What Is Hematology Oncology?

7:06 - Journey Into Heme-Oncol.

12:39 - Entering Med School Older Than Most People

19:16 - What Was Heme-Oncol. Fellowship Like?

26:29 - Getting Into Geriatrics

30:07 - What Is It Like Being an Attending?

37:33 - Dealing With Very Sick People

41:23 - Delivering Bad and Good News

50:24 - Lessons Learned From Treating Very Ill Patients

55:32 - An Average Day/Week of a Hematologist Oncologist

1:06:20 - If I Give You $100 Million, What Would You Do?

1:09:09 - Worst Thing About Being a Hematologist Oncologist

1:11:50 - Best Thing About Being a Hematologist Oncologist

1:13:27 - Advice to People Looking Into Hematology Oncology

1:16:36 - Maximizing Competitiveness Going Into Fellowship

1:19:09 - Advice to People Entering a Career in Medicine

1:25:22 - Super Important Question!!!

1:27:24 - Closing Message

1:30:22 - Outro




View the Show Notes Page for This Episode for transcript and more information:


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Welcome to the Zach Highley Show, where we discuss personal growth and medicine to figure out how to improve our lives. My name is Zach a Resident Physician in Boston. Throughout these episodes I’ll interview top performers from around the world in business, life, and medicine in hopes of extracting the resources and techniques they use to get to the top.

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