Any Pediatric Emergency Medicine Physician attendings, fellows, or residents out there?

Discussion in 'Pediatrics' started by curiousteacher18, Aug 11, 2015.

  1. curiousteacher18

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    Hi everyone,

    I am teacher and mentor. I know I have no business being here but some of the kids I'm working with have some questions. I have two kids that are thinking about becoming doctors specifically pediatric emergency medicine physicians. They asked me for some information on becoming doctors which I gave them. There other questions I could not answer so I was hoping someone can give me information so I can give to them.

    What is a typical schedule for PEM physician, fellow, or resident?


    Is it 8, 10, or 12 hour shifts or combination of the three?


    Who makes the schedule?


    What are some challenges you see in this field?

    Thanks everyone.
     
  2. Stitch

    Stitch Jedi Ninja Wizard
    Moderator Physician 15+ Year Member

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    These are very difficult questions to answer, as schedules, shifts and work are extremely variable from practice to practice. Residency and fellowship are very busy, often requiring 80 hours per week rotation through different services in and out of the emergency department. But even training schedules are quite different from program to program, so I can't make a broad generalization.

    As for challenges, what exactly do you mean? For the future of the field? In day to day life?

    Better questions to ask are what does someone in peds EM do every day? What sort of patients do they see? After medical school what training do these physicians receive (there are a couple of paths one can take).
     
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  3. curiousteacher18

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    You're right. I apologize. Let me clarify my questions.

    I know every hospital is different but can anyone share what their work schedule is like?
     
  4. mvenus929

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Pediatric Emergency Medicine is very specific to someone who presumably hasn't graduated high school yet (I assume based on the fact that you call them 'kids'). Not that someone can't be interested in something specific early on (though the ones I've seen that stick with it are people who had illnesses themselves as children that required they work a lot with the specific physician they want to be--a child with heart disease growing up to become a pediatric cardiology, or a child with cancer growing up to be a pediatric oncologist, or a former premature baby growing up to be a neonatologist), it's just rather specific. Personally, I feel that someone truly interested in medicine should keep an open mind during medical school, because things can change pretty dramatically interest wise as one explores the various specialties available. Wanting to know the lifestyle of the resident and fellow is also jumping the gun a bit, though I don't blame anyone wanting to know the lifestyle of an attending, because that's what you'll be doing for the bulk of your career.

    The two sets of Peds EM docs I've worked with have either worked as ED attendings in both adult and pediatrics, or do procedural sedation when not working in the ED. Thus, their schedules are widely variable. In general, EM docs work 8-12 hour shifts, and work approximately 36 hours per week, though this varies widely from location to location.

    Now, getting there is a different story. You have to go through college and get into medical school, then go through medical school. From there, you can choose Emergency Medicine residency, which varies from 3-4 years, and has a significant amount of time dedicated to ICU care when not in the ED; or a pediatrics residency, where you will spend the majority of your 3 years working with children in an inpatient setting, but will also have a general outpatient peds practice that you are involved in, and various subspecialties. If you go the EM route, you can do a Peds fellowship in 2 years, I believe, but most I think tend not to do that, because they feel that it's not worth the sacrifice and that they are trained well enough to care for children. If you go the Peds route, you'll have to go through a 3 year EM fellowship. At my institution, the PEM fellows staff the ED as the double coverage attending after their first year, which means that they can make a significant amount of money moonlighting if they so choose. They also work fellow shifts, where they act like residents and staff patients with the ED attending. I'm not sure the exact hours they work, but it's generally less than residency because they are doing more research time than patient care time.
     
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  5. curiousteacher18

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    Thank you for the information. They're both honor students at their school. Don't ask me where they got the idea. But I will share this with them. Thanks again.
     

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