Michael Johnson, D.P.M.’15, believes the business component of medical practice should be part of the copious volumes that medical students need to learn. That’s why he sought – and won – election as the student liaison for the American Podiatric Medical Students’ Association (APMSA) to the American Academy of Podiatric Practice Management (AAPPM), an organization that strives to help podiatric physicians integrate improved patient care with practice management strategies.
One of DMU’s five student delegates to the APMSA, Johnson is the lone student liaison to the AAPPM and a voting member of its board.
“The AAPPM loves students, so I knew I would be representing an organization that would take me seriously at their meetings,” he says. “The AAPPM is a teaching organization, so they are obviously very student-friendly.”
In addition to maintaining two-way communications between the two organizations, Johnson sets up conference calls every six weeks with the AAPPM student chapter presidents at the nation’s nine podiatric medical schools. He’s in charge of the De-Feet Childhood Hunger campaign, an annual competition among the nine schools to collect canned goods for food-insecure American children. His biggest project is working on AAPPM’s first-ever seminar for third-year podiatric medical students, held in Pittsburgh July 26-28. The event will feature speakers – Johnson among them – on topics such as factors in choosing externships and internships, effective interviewing, time management and the basics of billing and coding.
Johnson says the time he devotes as liaison to AAPPM is worth it because it’s “a wonderful organization full of positive and hardworking people.” He adds, “Their membership ranges from first-year students to retired podiatrists, so they really have something to benefit everybody.”