Going into this experience I was both nervous and excited. I’ve been trying to shadow for months and to have finally have gotten the opportunity made me feel so happy. I think I feared not liking what I saw and eventually questioning whether I chose to chase the right dream. While the whole point of shadowing is to make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before you actually get into it, I would have felt really discouraged to find that I didn’t like medicine. Gladly, I had a great time learning and envisioning myself in the doctors’ shoes. Today, I’m giving you a run down of my experience.
9:00-9:30 — Pre-Rounds: There were 2 medical students and a resident. The resident and the fourth year were going through patient files on the computer, catching up on what happened with their patients the night before. Since it was the third year medical students first day, she spent the day observing just like me.
9:30-11:00 — Rounds: The four of us, along with the attending, sat down with various patients to catch up on how they were doing. This is where most of my learning occured. I paid attention to the behavior of the patients and how the doctors/medical student responded to their behavior or responses to their questions. Listening to the patients’ stories made me realize how mental health stigmas are really rooted in mounds of BS.
11:00-11:45— Treatment plan meeting: Besides doctors and doctors to be, the medical team consisted of social workers, nurses, and pharmacists. Together, they all come up with a treatment plan that is in the best interest of the patient. The way they all interacted was indicative of the importance of teamwork. Not one person’s job on that team was more important than the other– they all needed each other.
12:00 — Lunch Time/Time for me to go
I plan to keep an open mind when it comes to determining my specialty, but I found that I truly liked Psychiatry. As a psychiatrist, you are helping people through some of their most vulnerable times– what’s more humbling than that? If anything, I felt more of an emergence to do better as an advocate for people with mental illnesses. They are people with feelings and emotions just like everyone else. They should not be marginilized in the way that they are. Period.
- For those of you who follow my IG stories, I did end up in the wrong building on my first day. Shoutout out to the sweet lady at the front desk who graciously helped me find my way!
- I might end up doing some posts on how to get shadowing experience and how to make the most of the shadowing experience.
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