Inaugural Albany Med Health Corp Team Prepares to Enter Medical School

Five members of the incoming medical student Class of 2027 have spent the past year working at Albany Medical Center as part of the Albany Med Health Corps.

The Health Corp was formed in 2022 to develop a sustainable workforce with the promise of acceptance into the Class of 2027. The five members of the inaugural AMHC team were waitlisted medical school applicants who spent the past year working full time as patient care associates and mobility assistants on the inpatient floors, in the intensive care units, and the emergency department.

In addition to shadowing opportunities, the team had access to patient care associate (PCA) training, grand rounds, research collaboration, and Albany Medical Center’s conference series, but it was their direct interactions with patients and members of the medical care team that left the greatest impact.

“The Albany Med Health Corp has changed my perception of medicine and how I imagine my future career as a physician,” said Skyler Teague, of Colorado. “In the hospital, there are many people, across multiple departments, working together, coordinating patient care, and every day I am reminded of the expression, ‘it takes a village.’ My goal is to remember that when I am a physician and in charge of patients’ care.”

Maryland native Megalan Tso reflected on how the simplest gestures, such as ensuring a patient’s call bell is within arm’s reach, or adjusting a toilet seat height to prevent falls, go a long way with patients. “Patient care is a very dynamic and intimate form of customer service in which customers are rarely having ‘just another day’ and rarely have the same needs as the next customer…Being in the Health Corps has taught me to be sensitive and to tend to a wide spectrum of customer and colleague needs, wider than any other customer service job I have worked.”

The cohort will successfully complete their year of work mid-June and take a short break before entering the Class of 2027 in August.

Arup De, MD, vice president of Practice Business Operations and director of the AMHC, says he’s proud of the students’ accomplishments, and plans to continue the program based on its success. Invitations to the next round of cohorts will go out in July.

“Their experiences this past year cannot be found in any medical school curriculum. To know how to interact with a frightened family, or simply how to put a patient at ease, are critical skills that will help this AMHC cohort excel as medical students,” said Dr. De. “The hope is that they will always be true colleagues to the nurses, techs, and all care team members they encounter through their training, and ultimately become the humanistic, caring and well-rounded physicians that we hope to see in future generations.”