R.I.P Ewa Kiljańska-Buch, MD

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It is with immense sadness and love that everyone in the Polish-American Medical Society in Chicago is saying good-bye to a special person – a great friend, colleague and Member of the Board of the Polish-American Medical Society, Dr. Ewa Kiljańska-Buch.

Dr. Buch was a graduate of Warsaw Medical Academy and of the Anesthesiology Residency at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. Specializing in pediatric anesthesiology, she was a greatly respected Attending Physician at the Condell Hospital in Libertyville, Illinois, for over forty years until her recent retirement. She was known in the Polish émigré community in the Chicago area as a generous, fun-loving friend, excellent physician and avid traveler. She and her husband Roman Buch were wonderful hosts to many picnics and gatherings at their Libertyville estate, as well as favorite guests as participants of other events – warm-hearted and full of joie de vivre. At the Polish-American Medical Society, for over thirty years, Ewa’s enthusiasm and involvement with organizing numerous events were a shining example of dedication to our common goal.

Ewa’s passing creates an enormous void in the work of the Polish-American Medical Society and leaves all her friends with a heavy sense of grief. We extend our deepest sympathy to her family in this time of mourning. The memory of Ewa Buch will always live in our hearts.

Summary of 6/28 PAMS scholarship Quarterly Meeting

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The time has come to give with PRIDE and JOY!

Each year, during the month of June, PAMS distributes scholarships to young and promising future physicians of Polish decent from the Chicago area. Thanks to the immense success of our charity Physician’s Ball, which took place this past February, PAMS was able to increase the number of recipients from 11 to 15!

On June 28th, 2015 Dr. Radwanska (The Director of the PAMS Scholarship Committee) distributed 2015 scholarship diplomas and checks; a total of $15.000 in scholarships was awarded. Scholarships were also funded by the Dr. Rytel and Dr. Cebulski Funds, as well as by Alan Krashesky – the MC of this year’s Physician’s ball, who donated his honorarium to PAMS educational funds.

The Dr. Rytel scholarship went to Michael Grzeskowiak, a student at Loyola University. This was Michael’s second time receiving this award. The Dr. Cebulski scholarship went to another second-time recipient: Daniel Michalik.

The Krashesky awards were given to four pre-medical graduates for their outstanding achievements: Emil Klosowiak (for innovation), Aleksandra Rojek (research), Joanna Tomaszewska (leadership), and Iwona Zajkowski (community service).

The remaining PAMS scholarships were awarded to Kamil Cieply (Lublin), Zuzanna Cieszkowska (Wroclaw), Magdalena Harasimowicz (Loyola) , Adrianna Janowicz (Des Moins), Jan Morawski (Poznan), Patryk Osak (Indianapolis), Ewa Socik (Rush), and Lukasz Zborek (Krakow).

This year’s meeting was attended by over 100 PAMS members and their guests who came to congratulate our awardees and also to listen to Dr. Król’s report on the growth and achievements of PAMS. Over the past two years, Dr. Król has tirelessly been representing Chicago Polish physicians, in both Chicago and Poland.

The evening was concluded with a presentation on professional insurance by MedMal Direct, who also sponsered the refreshments.

Bravo Dr. Król for organizing and hosting another successful PAMS event that beautifully presented the Polish American Medical Society and its charitable endeavors. We hope that the younger generations of physicians and students will follow in our footsteps!

Written by:

Evelina Worwag, MD, Secretary

PAMS at Poznań Medical University 2015 Graduation Ceremony

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President Kornelia Król, MD was an honorary guest at Poznań University of Medical Sciences (PUMS) this May. During her stay, Dr. Król spoke to PUMS students on the residency application process in the United States, visited many of Pozań’s new academic structures, and was asked to be the official commencement speaker for the graduating class of 2015.

On May 30th, Dr. Król presented her speech titled “Considering your options before the MATCH” at an event organized by the North American Student Government (NASG). The event was held at the PUMS library and was attended by some of this year’s PAMS Scholarship recipients: Marc Dziuba from Glenview, IL and Jan Morawski from Milwaukee, WI.

Two days later, during the PUMS 2015 Graduation Ceremony, Dr. Król eloquently emphasized the immense responsibility associated with the title Medical Doctor and inspired the graduating class to be positive leaders amongst future colleagues. This year, 47 students graduated from the 4-year MD program, 59 students from the 6-year MD program, 36 students from the DDS program, 6 students from the Pharmacy program, and 10 students from the Physical Therapy program. The graduating class represented 17 different countries and spoke 16 different languages. Fourty-six were citizens of the United States, and 16 from Canada. The ceremony was also attended by Vice-President Prof. Grzegorz Oszkinis, M.D., Ph.D., Dean of Medical Faculty I Prof. Ryszard Marciniak, M.D., Ph.D., Dean of Faculty of Pharmacy Prof. Lucjusz Zaprutko, M.Sc., Ph.D., Dean of Faculty of Health Sciences Prof. Włodzimierz Samborski, M.D., Ph.D., as well as Vice-Deans of respective faculties and Associate Deans of the Center of Medical Education in English.

After the ceremony, Dr. Król met with the heads of the university to discuss the fate of PUMS graduates returning to the United States. Professor Oszkinis proudly shared PUMS’ new approach to helping students tackle the USMLE exams. Currently, PUMS provides a full Kaplan prep course as well as NBME exams (USMLE-like exams) for all of the core subjects. These additions to the standard curriculum have significantly improved pass rates.

Dr. Król concluded her stay by visiting some of PUMS’ main structures. She saw the Didactic Center, the ‘Karolek’ student dorms, The Medical Biology Center, and The Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic at the University Hospital of Medical Sciences. She also visited the new Alzheimer’s Rehabilitation Center founded by our very own, honorary PAMS member, Professor Jadwiga Roguska. This impressive project was funded entirely by the Roguska-Kyts Foundation.

Written by:

Marta Worwag, MD

Webmaster

Second Annual Guatemala City Fundraiser

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On June 6th, 2015, George and Slava Swiderski hosted the 2nd Annual Guatemala City Fundraiser at their residence in Palatine, IL. Dr. Marian Olpinski, a pediatrician and member of PAMS, and his wife, Barbara, organized this wonderful charity mission to build homes for impoverished families.

The event was attended by PUMS members: Dr. Ewa Radwanska, Dr,Maria Siemionow, Dr. Kornelia Krol, Dr Jagoda Samulak, Dr. Malgorzarta Paterek and Drs. Lastowiecki. Donations were made directly or by purchasing lottery tickets. PAMS strongly supports this cause and has been regularly donating to the Beyond the Walls Foundation for the past 3 years.

During the fundraiser, Dr. Olpinski shared photos from last year’s mission trip. Thanks to our contributions, a family of 8 now shares a safe home in Guatemala City.

PAMS would like to sincerely thank Dr. Olpinski and Barbara for organizing these trips and fighting for this beautiful cause.

International Medical Conference “History of Medicine in Vilnius” 

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25th Anniversary of Polish Medical Society in Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania, September 18-20, 2015

On the 11th of May of this year, the Polish Medical Association of Lithuania (PMSL) celebrated its 25th anniversary. In honor of this occasion, PMSL and the Federation of Polish Medical Organizations Abroad organized an International Medical Conference, “History of Medicine in Vilnius,” on the days of September 18-20th. The organizational committee was headed by PMSL President, Dr. Daniel Lipski, Vice-president, Dr. Barbara Komarovska, President of the Federation of Polish Medical Organizations Abroad, Dr. Marek Rudnicki, and Vice-president of the Federation, Dr.Bronisława Siwicka.

The conference was attended by academic faculty members from several Medical Universities in Poland and Lithuania, medical doctors, and dentists, members of the Federation of Polish Medical Organizations, as well as medical historians from numerous countries, amounting to a total of 140 participants. Of these participants, 80 were from Poland, 8 from Germany, 1 from England, 5 from Belarus, 2 from Sweden, 1 from Denmark, 5 from Moldova, and 8 from the USA. Our Polish American Medical Society in Chicago was represented by President Dr. Kornelia Krol, Dr. Joanna Rudnicka, Dr. Marek Rudnicki, Dr.Jozef Mazurek, Dr. Adam Cios, Dr Alicja Lisak and Dr. Grażyna Orawiec.

The inauguration ceremony was honored by a beautiful musical performance by Ewelina Saszenko and Zbigniew Lewicki.

The topics for the two days of lectures revolved around the history of medicine in Vilnius and the presentation of distinguished researchers from various time periods associated with the University of Stefan Batory in Vilnius. Of great interest, was the lecture presented by Dr. Dariusz Zybort, “Doctors at the Vilnius Rossa – in memoriam.” To this day, the gravesites of many accomplished professors and doctors from the University can still be found at the historic Rossa cemetery, founded in 1769 in Vilnius. The Polish Medical Association in Lithuania is undertaking the restoration and preservation of historically valuable gravestones of doctors at the Rossa cemetery in order to preserve their legacy, as well as to prevent the destruction of a landmark so important to Polish history.

The organizers of the event put forth great effort into guaranteeing the participants other attractions outside of the many interesting lectures. For example, many participants attended a wonderful banquet and, most importantly, a tour of the beautiful capitol of Lithuania. Numerous city tours with guides speaking both Polish and English enabled the participants to admire the city and see its historical treasures.

Vilnius has been a city on the crossroads of cultures. Over the years, it has been claimed by Lithuanians, Poles, Russians and Jews alike. In 1994, the Old Town of Vilnius-with its unique architectural mixture of Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Classicism- was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Three and a half square kilometers in size, it is the largest old town in all of Eastern Europe. The old town’s treasures include over 20 Eastern Baroque-style churches. The narrow, cobblestone streets may seem quiet at first, yet you only have to step inside any of the tiny cafes or shops of the old town to experience the unique spirit of the city. One of the defining characteristics of the city is Uzupis, a district often referred to as the Montmarte of Vilnius, where many artists, actors, intellectuals and students reside. On All Fools Day 1997, the independent Republic of Uzupis was declared, the republic even wrote a constitution, comprised of 41 articles pronouncing, among other things, a dog’s right to be a dog, and man’s right – but not obligation – to die.”

The conference “History of Medicine in Vilnius” provided its participants with an understanding of the foundation and operation of the Polish Medical Society in Lithuania. We learned that the organization was called into existence in response to a real need for bringing organized medical care to Polish inhabitants of Vilnius and the surrounding areas during that time. Today, the 115 members of the organization take part in charitable work aimed at increasing and maintaining the general health of the Polish population, including promoting health education through Polish language newspapers and radio shows. After regaining independence in 1991, and joining the European Union in 2004, as well as the opening of various forms of cooperation with Poland, the situation in Lithuania has allowed for a favorable environment for youth of Polish descent seeking medical education. The PMSL activities include the organizing of medical school preparatory courses. Of the 105 students who have taken the courses, thus far, over 90% have been admitted to universities. Thanks to friendly Polish-Lithuanian relations at the national level, Polish medical doctors in Lithuania have opportunities to raise their professional qualifications, as well as take part in work placements and conferences.

Friends from the PMSL, congratulations on 25 years of fine work and thank you for organizing such a wonderful conference!

Written by: Alicja Lisak, MD

Kornelia Krol, M.D

PAMS President