Sometimes when I talk to people who aren’t in medical school, or even those who just aren’t in 3rd year yet, I forget how little people know about how I fill my days. Right now I’m on inpatient pediatrics, so to give you a better idea:
6:45- report for duty! Come in and find out how the patients I’m helping take care of did over night. Now is when we find out things like if they were in pain, had trouble breathing, or slept peacefully through the night.
7-8: Prerounding! This is when I go around to see my individual patients and if they’re awake I poke my head in and see how they are feeling. At that point, sometimes parents will ask questions about the “game plan” of what we’ll be doing for their child. Truthfully, this may be my favorite part of the day.
8-9/9:30: Lecture! On pediatrics every day the residents either have a conference to teach us, or have a conference for themselves that we learn at too. It’s been great- especially now that I’m studying for my exam, these lectures have taught me some points about illnesses/problems that I may not see in patients because they aren’t that common.
9-12/1: Rounding. This is when the whole team (which entails an attending [the highest level of doctor in the group aka the boss], the resident [2nd highest in command, further along in their training], the intern [ a doctor in their first year of pediatric training], and the medical students) goes around to each of the patients. As a team we may be taking care of 10 patients, but each of the medical students has 2-3 that they’re the point people for. When we round, each of us takes our turn talking about how our patients are doing and what we think could be done for them in terms of medications, tests, social services, etc. After talking about it, we then go into the room and talk to the family to keep them informed and get their input. This is also an awesome part of the day because this is when the action happens- changes are made, learning happens, and kids get healthy.
1-2/3: Lecture! The peds department has special lectures just for the medical students to make sure we understand what we’re seeing on the floor.
2/3-5/6/7: All the details about planning that we worked out in rounds are put into action. This is when tests are ordered, medications are changed, calls are made to other doctors to get their input, and notes on how patients are doing are written. The afternoon FLIES by, especially if your patients need some serious work done for them!
And then, three nights out of our 2.5 week block we stay after hours to help the residents admit new patients. This is similarly a great learning experience- you see a patient who is brand new to the floor and get to help plan what treatment they’ll need during their stay. Granted as a medical student you don’t know all that much, but by being proactive I’ve definitely absorbed a lot of info!
Peds has been a great rotation- working with kids is so amazing and it’s the first time in a while I’ve seen my classmates! I’ve been alone at outpatient sites for so long and seeing them is so refreshing.
The rotation ends next week, which means it’s sadly almost exam time again 😦 Time to go study!
Happy almost Friday!