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1.  Predicting Minority Student Performance in the First Medical School Year 
Impressions and anecdotal evidence have raised concerns that traditional cognitive measures of past performance may not be predictive of the performance among minority students in medical school. This study assessed the relationship between nine objective measures and actual first year academic performance for cohorts of minority students enrolled in a single medical school between 1973 and 1976.
The findings support previous impressions that objective measures together explain less than half of the variance in academic performance. Furthermore, the cumulative undergraduate college average and the competitiveness of the undergraduate college are consistently the strongest predictors of academic performance among this group.
PMCID: PMC2537291  PMID: 529325
2.  Health Policy and the Underserved 
Historically, the provision of health benefits and health services has been wedded to the needs of an industrial society to maintain a productive labor force. The casual observer will note that since the late 19th century the role of government as a participant either in the provision for health services or the delivery of health services has been strongly tied to the labor movement in Western Europe. Overtime benefits, initially procured for the worker, were expanded to include the dependents of the worker and, finally, to include the former worker who was no longer able to work due to age or infirmity. The provision of health care to the poor was considered an act of charity and was never liberal enough to reward poverty nor was it essentially humane, for poverty was a condition to be punished. The rise of “alms houses” and public hospitals for the poor provided constant physical reassurance to the worker that he was, indeed, successful. Such institutions were also warnings to the worker lest he slip into the numbers of the poor.
PMCID: PMC2537036  PMID: 702542
3.  Health Manpower-Planning Without Objectives 
Health manpower developments of the past decade have resulted in an absolute increase in the number of health personnel, the expansion of the roles of some traditional categories of personnel, and the introduction of new professional categories. Inherent in these developments has been the acceptance of the principal that the relative and absolute increase in manpower would result in an increased availability of health services. Unfortunately, in the last decade, the correlation between increased numbers and increased services is not a strong one. The failure to link manpower needs to specific service objectives and to identify appropriate rates of substitution among professional types has resulted in a wastage of funds and energies.
A framework for future planning must now be developed which (1) defines service priorities, (2) delineates the functions required to deliver those services, and (3) defines appropriate manpower categories with their rates of substitution to perform those functions. Training programs must be coordinated to allow appropriate linkages among categorical types of personnel. The maldistribution of health care service must be viewed as a result of the demographic maldistribution among the health professions as well as the maldistribution of organizational and financial incentives for provision of priority services as well as utilization of priority services.
PMCID: PMC2536966  PMID: 864776

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