Students live in poverty for a day

A.T. Still Universityâ??s KCOM Third Annual Poverty Simulation.

Do you think you would be a better employee and all around better citizen if you had the opportunity to walk in someone else's shoes? Professors and Administrators at A.T. Still Universityâ??s Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine believes that is the case.

Wednesday, first-year medical students participated in the Third Annual Poverty Simulation hosted by the "Complete Doctor Course" and the Northeast Missouri Community Action Agency. Jobs, ages, family structure and family income were all given to the students.

Some were single mothers or fathers who had to work two or three jobs to make ends meet. And some students were elderly people living on a fixed income. Dean of KCOM Margaret Wilson, D.O. said this will help the students become better doctors. â??I think the students have been really excited and kind of in wonderment about this is,â?? Wilson said. â??I hope at the end of the day we'll see that they will come away with just a greater appreciation of how some people struggle and how important it is for us and for them as they become physicians to be able to help their patients navigate the system and really understand some of the challenges that they face.â??

Wilson said the main message is to show students how obtaining health care and making healthy choices can be difficult for those who live in poverty.