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A Little Help with Shadowing and Clinical Experience

ttothemac

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    So, I am a sophomore in college right now and I want to apply to medical school in 1.5 years (that is the normal time right?).

    My GPA and major are fine, and I think I will be doing research next year. But I am really having trouble with the shadowing/ clinical experience. So far I have volunteered at one hospital for a semester, but that it is it.

    How can I go about getting shadowing/clinical experience while I am at school if I do not have a car? Are there any places where I can get some clinical experience other than hospitals? Also how would I proceed to ask doctors if I may shadow with them when I am at home because I recently moved and do not know any of them personally.

    Thanks for any help, I know that I just asked a lot of questions!
     

    Fiddlergirl

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      How can I go about getting shadowing/clinical experience while I am at school if I do not have a car? Are there any places where I can get some clinical experience other than hospitals?

      It depends on what's in your area. Hospitals are going to be the best place to get clinical experience, and at some point you're going to need significant clinical exposure either in a hospital or a private office. I would start by seeing if there are any hospitals on a local bus route, then widen your search. See if there's a free clinic or a private doctor's office in the area.

      Also how would I proceed to ask doctors if I may shadow with them when I am at home because I recently moved and do not know any of them personally.

      A good way to start is to ask your school if there are any alums living near your home. It's some sort of a connection. It's also acceptable to cold call offices and say you're a pre-med and would like to shadow. Be prepared to hear "no" quite a few times before you get a "yes."
       

      Doubtnichts

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      Feb 26, 2010
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        This was the hardest part for me too. I couldn't figure out how to ask the docs or how to approach them or what to say... I ended up just calling the doctor that my family saw. I was new to the area also and didn't know him. Honestly, I would say that calling is easier because it's not the face-face interaction. For me, calling reduced the stress. Really, the only advice I can give, is to just do it. The worse that can happen is that they say no.....
         
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        torshi

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          Basically all you would need is volunteer work in a hospital/clinic setting(patient contact) no more than 100 hrs, over is unnecessary.

          Shadow 2-3 docs (include primary care) Total= about 60-80 hrs
          You can just call up the doctors offices and ask, pretty simple, or start off with your family doc if you have one than he can recommend you to others after
           

          ttothemac

          Gunner... the soccer fan kind
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          Jan 5, 2011
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            Thank you for all of the advice guys, I definitely feel better about my situation. SDN seems like a nice place, I think I'll stick around...
             

            gettheleadout

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            Jun 23, 2010
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              Basically all you would need is volunteer work in a hospital/clinic setting(patient contact) no more than 100 hrs, over is unnecessary.

              Shadow 2-3 docs (include primary care) Total= about 60-80 hrs
              You can just call up the doctors offices and ask, pretty simple, or start off with your family doc if you have one than he can recommend you to others after
              Just remember that consistency over a long period of time is :thumbup:.
              Thank you for all of the advice guys, I definitely feel better about my situation. SDN seems like a nice place, I think I'll stick around...
              Glad to have you! Enjoy your stay, I think you'll find yourself thankful you found SDN early on.
               

              ucsfstudents

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                Consider getting clinical experience at a hospice or nursing home. You just need to be an environment where you see medicine being practice and that can highlight your capacity provide compassion care to those who are sick.
                 

                Catalystik

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                  For shadowing besides asking your own doc, ask your relatives to ask their docs, or ask a friend to ask their physician parent. Some premed advisors have a list of local docs willing to be shadowed. Some applicants call multiple doc's offices (cold calls)near where they'll be on break and ask if shadowing is allowed and if any physician there would be open to it.
                   
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