Second-year WashU Nephrology fellows Maryam Saleem, MBBS, Bharat Neelam Raju, MD, Hassaan Iftikhar, MBBS, and Gaurav Rajashekar, MBBS, took part in the 2021 Nephrology Business Leadership University (NBLU) program, which wrapped up its week-long event on August 8, 2021.
The interactive event schools participants on the economics and business of nephrology to help senior fellows prepare for the next stage of their career. The program was launched in 2016 by a diverse group of practicing nephrologists, fellowship program directors, and dialysis industry executives associated with U.S. Renal Care, the UC San Diego School of Medicine, and the Dallas Renal Group.
This year, the hybrid event allowed fellows to attend virtually or in-person in Plano, Texas. Over 100 faculty members and panelists from across the United States helped make #NBLUniv a success.
Lectures included a range of topics such as Growth Strategies for a Practice, Marketing 101, and Financial Planning. The fellows also participated in a Shark Tank-like competition and were treated to keynote speaker @DGlaucomflecken, an Ophthalmologist/Comedian/Speaker, who is a popular personality on Tik Tok and Twitter.
Dr. Saleem, who attended the event virtually, says, “The event exceeded my expectations. I was surprised by the fact that it covered so many aspects of nephrology practice. Honestly, I love nephrology even more after discovering the practical side of it.” She claims the ability to learn leadership, economics, teamwork – and most importantly the connections and friendships that were made – was what made the experience truly exceptional.
As for how the experience will help her career going forward, Saleem says, “It helped me streamline my specific future plans, helped me identify what is the ideal job for me and envision myself as a dedicated nephrologist working in the environment that I like.” She wholeheartedly recommends NBLU to other fellows.
Dr. Rajashekar, who attended in person, says “NBLU is essential and should be mandatory for every second-year nephrology fellow across the country. From academic medicine to private practice, from VISA issues to job contract signing, from billing to medical directorship in dialysis units, each and every aspect of nephrology is covered. Besides providing quality lectures from esteemed guests from all fields of nephrology, the NBLU provides an excellent platform for networking.”
Dr. Bharat Neelam Raju, who also attended in person, says that the event totally lived up to his expectations. “It was an exceptional learning experience and a great insight on the private practice side of nephrology.”
The NBLU event provided invaluable insight concerning the private practice side of nephrology, as well as fostering networking with other fellows from different programs in the country.
“One big plus was that we could directly ask questions from past and present ASN presidents,” he says. “I would highly recommend this to all the fellows in training because this program will help personal and professional growth. I feel more confident on how to find the perfectly suited job and career for myself after attending NBLU.”
“It was an excellent event which lives up to its name,” says Dr. Hassaan Iftikhar. “It’s truly meant for the business aspect of Nephrology. The NBLU has different events by means of which you learn how to operate as an attending nephrologist, be it private practice or academics. It also helps you understand the financial aspect of nephrology practices and keeps you updated with upcoming changes and innovations being brought onto the field by the government and major dialysis organizations and how to tackle those challenges. I would recommend this to every fellow.”