SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads) Some people on hSDN had expressed an interest in finding out what a typical day in different specialties are. I'm a Family Med doctor, which is a field that most people have personal experience with, but gets a bad rap on SDN. So I figured I'd talk a little bit about what I do on a daily basis. As a family doctor, we're trained to see people of all ages, from pregnant women, to newborns, to adults, to the very elderly. We're also trained to work in either a hospital or in an outpatient office, although many (not all) will choose one or the other. Some will also work in urgent care centers or nursing homes. Family Medicine is one of the shorter paths in medicine - 4 years of undergraduate work, 4 years of medical school, and then 3 years of residency. Some people will do a 1 year fellowship in sports medicine, geriatrics, palliative care, or additional training in obstetrics. Personally, I see mostly adults, and only see patients in an office. My hours are, pretty consistently, from 8AM to 5PM, 5 days a week. I have my weekends off and do not have to see patients in the ER in the middle of the night. I work in a Federally Qualified Health Center in Florida. The patients we see are quite poor - most are on some kind of federal or state insurance (Medicaid, Medicare), while the rest have no insurance at all. 7 AM - I typically try to leave the house at 7AM, so I can get to the office at 7:30. I'm a morning person, and I like having that empty half hour to review lab results and go over phone messages. I'm the only person in the office who does this, though. 8 AM until 5 PM - I see patients, every 15 minutes, starting at 8. Some patients need more than 15 minutes, and some will need less, so it mostly balances out. I'm generally finished seeing patients by 11:15, so I have time to finish paperwork before lunch. The same goes for the afternoon - I generally finish patients at 4:30, so I can finish charts before 5. I see a wide variety of patients, and never know what is going to walk through the door. Some of it is routine (physicals, pap smears, blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis), and some of it is fairly exotic (MS, chronic pancreatitis, lupus, epilepsy). There is a lot of uncertainty, because patients come in with vague symptoms that could represent any number of things. Part of the challenge of medicine, particularly general medicine, is learning how to live with that uncertainty. Where I work, I get little help from specialists. Because most of our patients are uninsured or have terrible insurance, they cannot afford to see specialists for their care, and need to have their Family doctor manage it instead. And while that is intellectually rewarding, it is also somewhat stressful to be pulled out of your comfort zone constantly, numerous times over the course of a day. As you become more experienced, your comfort zone gets bigger, but it's a process. 5:30 PM - I'm almost always on my way home. I rarely need to be in the office later than this. When I get home, I try to read, go to the gym, cook dinner, etc. But work is done until the next morning. 10 PM - I go to bed early, because if I don't get a good 8 hours, I don't feel sharp seeing patients. And when you see 20 patients a day, being sleep deprived is a recipe for disaster. That's pretty much my day in a nutshell. If you have any questions, feel free to post them here!