Graduating Medical Student Turns Experience as Patient into Compassion as Physician

By April Wilkerson 
Writer, OU College of Medicine

Eudy Bosley’s journey to earning her medical degree has not been without its challenges, but instead of letting life’s difficulties pull her down, she has used each as a stepping stone toward becoming a compassionate and insightful physician.

Class of 2015 medical student Eudy Bosley received the 2015 Krishna Award during the annual Bridges to Access Conference, a student-organized event. Pictured with her are Murali Krishna, M.D., psychiatrist and founder of the Health Alliance for the Uninsured, and Pam Cross, executive director of the Health Alliance for the Uninsured. The HAU is a community organization that facilitates quality preventive and health care services to the medically underserved of central Oklahoma.

Bosley, a member of the OU College of Medicine Class of 2015, knows that patients can tell when health care providers genuinely care about their well-being. That’s because Bosley has been a patient herself. 

Bosley was born and raised in Costa Rica, and she was always interested in a career in the health professions. She began pharmacy school in Costa Rica and continued on that path for about a year. When her sister came to the United States because of work, she decided to follow her. It wasn’t long after her arrival that Bosley became sick. She was first diagnosed with lupus and, later, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, an autoimmune disease for which she was hospitalized more than eight months. She also was diagnosed with ITP, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, for which she has received infusions. Her time in the hospital, while difficult, spurred her to think about medical school. Her caregivers came to mean so much to her, both for their skill and their compassion. She was stirred to do the same.

“I always thought that I couldn’t handle patients being really sick and getting emotionally attached to them,” she said. “But being in the hospital made me feel like I could do it. It’s not as sad as you think, and you can make a difference in people’s lives. That’s what I like about medicine – it depends on your approach to it, but it can be very encouraging and uplifting, even in worst-case scenarios.”

After she was released from the hospital, Bosley was about to return to Costa Rica when fate intervened again. She met the man who would become her husband, and she began putting down roots in Oklahoma. She decided that she indeed wanted to give medical school a try, and she was accepted at OU. 

Bosley is now 33 years old, which made her older than most of her peers in medical school. She also juggled the demands of medical education as she and her husband began their own family. Bosley found a niche in medical school with the OU Community Health Alliance, which connects students with patients at Oklahoma City’s charitable clinics. She volunteered at Good Shepherd Clinic, King’s Klinic and other clinics and events, driven by a desire to help people who need it most.

“I enjoy it so much because the patients are grateful and relieved to have a place to go with people who care to take care of them,” she said. “I have also enjoyed working with the Hispanic community because they need to come to the doctor, but they need a translator to communicate.”

For her efforts, Bosley was awarded the R. Murali Krishna Community Service Award during this year’s Bridges to Access conference, a program of the OU Community Health Alliance. It is named for Murali Krishna, M.D., an Oklahoma City psychiatrist who helped to found the Health Alliance for the Uninsured, which facilitates health care services at the metro-area charitable clinics.

After graduating from the OU College of Medicine on May 30, Bosley will begin her residency in psychiatry at the Tulsa branch campus, the School of Community Medicine. She chose psychiatry because it is a discipline in which the physician gets to know her patients deeply. The field also requires its practitioners to understand themselves well before treating others. She envisions herself one day practicing in a smaller community, where physicians – especially psychiatrists – are not found in abundance. She is especially drawn to working with the Hispanic community and making psychiatric medicine accessible. Eventually, she would like to play a role in policymaking, especially around improving access to services.

“Mainly, I want people to feel like I care about them, and that I care about taking good care of them,” she said. “I want people to know that as a physician, I’m not magical. I don’t have magic powers, but if they’re willing to work with me, I’m willing to work with them and care about them.”