Erik Johnson, MD, donates his time to medical students

Monday, May 13, 2013

By: Betsy Hansen

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Many BayCare Clinic physicians and employees play an integral part of the Wisconsin Academy of Rural Medicine (WARM) program in Northeastern Wisconsin. The WARM program is comprised of third and fourth year medical students who wish to spend their clinical years at Aurora BayCare Medical Center. The third year medical students are able to do rotations through surgery, pediatrics, and internal medicine; the fourth year students are able to choose more electives based on their personal career interests.


BayCare Clinic general and vascular surgeon Erik Johnson, MD, has been involved in the WARM program in a few different ways. Dr. Johnson was first involved as a preceptor, or a mentor of a fourth year general surgery elective. He works with and teaches these students in the operating room as well as daily rounds throughout the hospital.


Dr. Johnson is also involved in one of the new features added to the program in response to student requests. "The student case-based discussion group was a new offering that was initiated by the students," Dr. Johnson said, "Each week they assign one of the students to put together a discussion based on a patient encounter for the benefits of the other students." It usually has at least one physician present to guide the discussion.



While teaching, Dr. Johnson incorporates principles that his students will be able to use, no matter what field they go into. "As general surgeons, we need to understand all the chronic medical conditions that affect a patient, because their other medical issues will certainly affect our surgical plan. I want them to learn how to be good physicians on this rotation, not just how to be a good general surgeon," Dr. Johnson said.



Dr. Johnson was inspired to contribute his time to the WARM program after he was involved in medical student education as a general surgery resident at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. He enjoys being able to connect with his students. "There is a certain feeling that I get when I see the student's eyes light up when they finally understand a difficult concept that had previously confused them," Dr. Johnson said.


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BayCare Clinic,, is the largest physician-owned specialty-care clinic in northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. BayCare Clinic offers expertise in more than 20 specialties, with more than 100 physicians serving in 16 area communities. BayCare Clinic is a joint partner in Aurora BayCare Medical Center, a 167-bed, full-service hospital. Follow BayCare Clinic on Facebook and Twitter.