Can someone enlighten me on the realities of clinical rotations for DO students?

Jul 27, 2015
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Hi all,

I'm just recently starting to receive DO school invites (sitting on 8 currently, hopefully won't have to attend all of them). I was discussing how excited I was at the prospect of potentially starting school next year with a DO that I work with / shadowed, and while she shared in my excitement, she did mention a few things that made me concerned.

She mentioned that when she went to school (admittedly ~15 years ago) that rotations were a nightmare for her. Specifically, her school only provided a small portion of her rotations/clinicals, and she had to schedule the rest with little to no help or guidance from her school. So, on top of med school, she was desperately reaching out to hospitals/clinics to set up rotations, trying to find places to live around the country for a month or two at a time, etc. She said it was literally the lowest point in her life while she was living out of her suitcase in total dumpster-dives of an area because she could afford very little that would be available to rent for a month or two at a time. Not only that, but she said often times when she would find a place that took students, they would reject her for not being a part of an LCME-accredited program.

I understand that there are some limitations of attending DO schools, but this sounds like some carribean med school crap. Is this the reality of DO schools as well? Just the thought of having to move around the country and find places to live for weeks at a time makes me anxious. My SO is in NP school right now and I already saw the hell she went through just trying to establish two rotations.
 

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Hi all,

I'm just recently starting to receive DO school invites (sitting on 8 currently, hopefully won't have to attend all of them). I was discussing how excited I was at the prospect of potentially starting school next year with a DO that I work with / shadowed, and while she shared in my excitement, she did mention a few things that made me concerned.

She mentioned that when she went to school (admittedly ~15 years ago) that rotations were a nightmare for her. Specifically, her school only provided a small portion of her rotations/clinicals, and she had to schedule the rest with little to no help or guidance from her school. So, on top of med school, she was desperately reaching out to hospitals/clinics to set up rotations, trying to find places to live around the country for a month or two at a time, etc. She said it was literally the lowest point in her life while she was living out of her suitcase in total dumpster-dives of an area because she could afford very little that would be available to rent for a month or two at a time. Not only that, but she said often times when she would find a place that took students, they would reject her for not being a part of an LCME-accredited program.

I understand that there are some limitations of attending DO schools, but this sounds like some carribean med school crap. Is this the reality of DO schools as well? Just the thought of having to move around the country and find places to live for weeks at a time makes me anxious. My SO is in NP school right now and I already saw the hell she went through just trying to establish two rotations.
Depends on the school. It's a valid concern to be sure.
 
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Depends on the school. It's a valid concern to be sure.
Are there any schools in particular you need to watch out for? I have interviews at:

RVU CO / UT
LECOM Eerie
NYIT - AR campus
KCU
DMU
WesternU NW
Marian U
 
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docbsb2015

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Are there any schools in particular you need to watch out for? I have interviews at:

RVU CO / UT
LECOM Eerie
NYIT - AR campus
KCU
DMU
WesternU NW
Marian U
I go to Marian. I didn't have to set up any rotations. The first 2 classes had to set some up but we have a few main clinical partners that take most of our students.

Not sure about the rest.
 
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Mad Jack

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Not an issue at UNECOM.

One thing that is difficult for most schools though is fourth year. Most DO schools do not have a dedicated teaching hospital, so fourth year is generally a majority of away rotations since fourth year spots are frequently limited at community sites. It's easy enough to do, but you have to start early to ensure you aren't scrambling around the country.
 
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ortnakas

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Rarely an issue at LECOM Erie/Seton Hill. I wish we had more flexibility in setting up our schedules, but we're not living out of boxes and we aren't scrambling at all for core rotations.

Setting up electives/away rotations can get tricky, but as Mad Jack said, this is more of a fourth year problem and is a common problem in many DO schools. I know people who have had trouble getting rotations in specialties, but not specifically for being at a DO program.
 
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Chibucks15

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From what they told us at DMU you have the option to set up some of your own but they have sites set up and are developing more and more. So overall not an issue

Source: First year here
 

AnatomyGrey12

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Are there any schools in particular you need to watch out for? I have interviews at:

RVU CO / UT
LECOM Eerie
NYIT - AR campus
KCU
DMU
WesternU NW
Marian U
NYIT-AR yes I would be exceptionally concerned. The others have fairly stable rotations, although yes you might (see: probably) need to move for years 3/4 from the location of the school. Once you do that move though a lot of those schools have a good amount of full year rotations in one area and a number of 4th year as well. This definitely a concern at a large number of DO schools, though fortunately not at mine.
 

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Are there any schools in particular you need to watch out for? I have interviews at:

RVU CO / UT
LECOM Eerie
NYIT - AR campus
KCU
DMU
WesternU NW
Marian U
DMU/KCU > RVU >> LECOM > the others >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> NYIT-AR

Like others have said, it will vary by school. Generally, the newer the school, the more difficulty they'll have with rotations. With that being said, unless you're being made to set up your own main rotations aka non-elective/selectives (IM, Ob/gyn, GS, FP, Peds), having to set up your other ones can be a blessing in my opinion depending on what you want to do. My school sets up all our main rotations then I can do a bunch of electives and selectives wherever I want or I can just do them wherever my main hospital is. It lets me get in an adequate amount of auditions and rotations at places that might offer a better experience.
 

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KCU and DMU have built in GME local with strong preference if you don't mind staying local. Erie does as well. I am not familiar with RVU, they pass their boards at higher rate tho, and place well. The others will probably have you moving around, but have been going long enough that you shouldn't have an issue. I wouldn't even interview at NYIT-AR (sorry, guys I know that's mean). REKT has good advice.
 

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KCU and DMU have built in GME local with strong preference if you don't mind staying local. Erie does as well. I am not familiar with RVU, they pass their boards at higher rate tho, and place well. The others will probably have you moving around, but have been going long enough that you shouldn't have an issue. I wouldn't even interview at NYIT-AR (sorry, guys I know that's mean). REKT has good advice.
Until you get one acceptance, don't ever turn down an interview invite even if its a new school like NYIT-AR
 

Leggomyeggo128

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Every DO student should be concerned with the state of clinical education. And it's not even unique to the newish schools. Even the "established" schools have tons of issues. It is an endemic problem, and is hurting DOs in the match. I've heard residency PDs site variability in DO clinical ed as reason to be skeptical of their ability to excel day one of residency - even DOs from the same school have major disparities in terms of there clinical training.

The state of clinical education at osteopathic schools is so bad, I can't recommend in good conscience you attend a DO school unless you absolutely have too. (And I am a 4th year DO student for what it's worth)
 
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Chibucks15

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Every DO student should be concerned with the state of clinical education. And it's not even unique to the newish schools. Even the "established" schools have tons of issues. It is an endemic problem, and is hurting DOs in the match. I've heard residency PDs site variability in DO clinical ed as reason to be skeptical of their ability to excel day one of residency - even DOs from the same school have major disparities in terms of there clinical training.

The state of clinical education at osteopathic schools is so bad, I can't recommend in good conscience you attend a DO school unless you absolutely have too. (And I am a 4th year DO student for what it's worth)
Then you might be in the wrong situation for your future goals. If you're trying to do neurosurgery at Harvard then yes it's an uphill battle. But the vast majority of what I've seen and heard talking to practicing physicians and doing research on certain programs there's DOs in more and more places. Nobody is a shoe in for the competitive specialties no matter where you go. An established DO school puts people in the big time spots as much as the lower tier MDs. More and more I've come to realize nobody really cares about your degree as long as you prove you can handle everything, unless you're gunning for crazy competitive stuff. Kill the USMLE and get good letters of rec like you would in any other school and you've got a shot that's all you can ask. Idk people **** on DOs much more than I believe is deserved. Is CCOM at the same level as UChicago? Not even close and most MD schools aren't. But all around residency slots in Chicago you see those grads. The bias is fading and past 2021 it'll be the same


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AnatomyGrey12

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More and more I've come to realize nobody really cares about your degree as long as you prove you can handle everything, unless you're gunning for crazy competitive stuff.
No.....

The bias is fading and past 2021 it'll be the same
no.....


Ah the wishful thinking of DO hopefuls. Once you are in the community your degree doesn't matter most of the time (but still can), but when it comes to residency yes your degree definitely matters. Even in extremely DO friendly fields the MD degree gets you farther with the exact same residency application.
 

IslandStyle808

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Then you might be in the wrong situation for your future goals. If you're trying to do neurosurgery at Harvard then yes it's an uphill battle. But the vast majority of what I've seen and heard talking to practicing physicians and doing research on certain programs there's DOs in more and more places. Nobody is a shoe in for the competitive specialties no matter where you go. An established DO school puts people in the big time spots as much as the lower tier MDs. More and more I've come to realize nobody really cares about your degree as long as you prove you can handle everything, unless you're gunning for crazy competitive stuff.
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Dead wrong. I've seen more people from a place like Drexel match into big name places than I ever did from DOs in any school. Matching into the vast majority of top tier Harvard residencies (ex. MGH & BWH, not northshore or BID) as a DO is not an uphill battle, its a battle lost before it even begun.
 

Chibucks15

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Welp good thing I have no intention of doing anything remotely like that. I'm just saying my n=1 about my experiences around the Chicago area researching and talking to people. Both MDs and DOs along with other healthcare roles. I know nothing about NYC or Cali cuz no matter who you are it's insanely competitive so I could care less. Also I'm already in medical school and feeling great going to a DO school cuz it's an established one. Definitely can be a different story for the new ones. We'll see what all goes down in 2021 I suppose. It ain't all about the big name for a lot of things contrary to SDN mindsets


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Chibucks15

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I forgot how delightful this site can be. OP and whoever take my words and everything you see on here with a grain of salt. Do research outside of SDN. Talk to DOs and MDs and then you can make a decision that's best for your goals. I always wished someone said that when I was applying. I took some of these posts far too literally at first. Good luck imma sign off this thread before I get bashed more


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Lexdiamondz

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Then you might be in the wrong situation for your future goals. If you're trying to do neurosurgery at Harvard then yes it's an uphill battle. But the vast majority of what I've seen and heard talking to practicing physicians and doing research on certain programs there's DOs in more and more places. Nobody is a shoe in for the competitive specialties no matter where you go. An established DO school puts people in the big time spots as much as the lower tier MDs. More and more I've come to realize nobody really cares about your degree as long as you prove you can handle everything, unless you're gunning for crazy competitive stuff. Kill the USMLE and get good letters of rec like you would in any other school and you've got a shot that's all you can ask. Idk people **** on DOs much more than I believe is deserved. Is CCOM at the same level as UChicago? Not even close and most MD schools aren't. But all around residency slots in Chicago you see those grads. The bias is fading and past 2021 it'll be the same


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No it doesn't dude don't delude yourself.
 

kubyx

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The state of clinical education at osteopathic schools is so bad, I can't recommend in good conscience you attend a DO school unless you absolutely have too. (And I am a 4th year DO student for what it's worth)
That's a pretty alarming statement to make. Do other 3rd/4th year DO students feel this way?
 

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I'm an OMS-4 at WCUCOM.

I've had no issues with the quality of my clinical education. My entire 3rd year was set up by my rotations department (Psych, FM X2, Surgery X2, EM X2, IM, OB/GYN, and Meds). My 4th year was on me, but I did my homework and had few issues, if any, setting up rotations.

During 3rd year, the overwhelming majority of my preceptors were MD's. I was given procedure opportunities, plenty of responsibility and ownership of my patients. GME has expanded in MS, and they are having little difficulty meeting the COCA requirement to have rotations with residents.
 
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W19

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4th year rotations have nothing to do with the school (for the most part). You can do them anywhere you want to... Every US med student has access to VSAS (Visiting Student Application System).

If you think your 3rd rotations were lacking, you can do mostly subI in 4th year... Some choose to do that; others like myself are taking it easy.
 
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Clinic training is the achilles heel of osteopathic education. There is a continuum from training alongside a solo, family practice doc in his private office, to training in a large volume teaching hospital, with a robust GME program, formal didactic conferences, etc, and a whole lot in the middle.

There are certainly DO's who have stellar USMLE Step 1 scores and have well rounding CV's complete with research, but the achilles heel, is going to be the quality of your clinical education. This is the most common concern PD's have in the ACMGE university world. They just don't know what they're getting.

Rather than focussing on expanding class sizes and opening more and more branch campuses, the DO world must call on its leadership to address the 10,000 lb elephant in the room, and improve the clinical training for it's students.
 

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meliora27 hit it right on the head. As a DO student, you can seriously work your tail off during years 1+2 so that your numbers are just like the MD students, but once you hit your clinical years, you'll be dealing with things that are unfortunately beyond your control. If you're lucky and your school has contracts with bigger centers, you might land yourself there and get to learn and do more. If you're not lucky, you'll end up in a backwater town where the equipment is 10 years out of date and rather than being able to deal with cases, all you can do is work-up patients for transfer. What makes it harder is if you're given the option for selective rotations and the service you want to be on isn't at your core hospital, you have no choice but to somehow request another hospital to let you do a 4 week selective, then come back to your core site. Clinical time aside, 3rd and 4th year are mentally, physically, and financially exhausting on DO students. A classmate of mine had to start his 3rd year with a selective rotation, but his assigned hospital didn't have it available so he had to rent a place at his core site, pay for an airBnB at his selective site, and live out of a suitcase for the month before going back to his core hospital. And the cherry on top is unfortunately, he's got another selective coming up in 8 weeks and he's going to have to do that again. I like and appreciate my school a lot and I understand the difficulties of attempting to organize a class of 200+ students for rotations, but even the hardest working students will have their potentials stunted by a lack of resources or guidance.
 
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hallowmann

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That's a pretty alarming statement to make. Do other 3rd/4th year DO students feel this way?
I didn't have any issue with my core rotations in med school. I was at a medium-sized community hospital with a decent number of residencies (not every specialty, but almost all the cores and a number of fellowships). They were mostly AOA programs, but now most have transitioned and are ACGME accredited. We had regular didactics and now being at a big university center for residency, the overall flow wasn't that different, except for maybe surgery.

I ranked my site because it had all the cores, had a lot of residencies, and had a good number of students. I also did my electives/subI's in the first half of 4th year at ACGME programs (did some rural and 1 on 1 rotations in small hospitals post-match).

That said, not everyone had the same experience as me. Some people were in small hospitals with little more than a FM residency. Others had to go to outside sites for 2 or so cores. Some even had experiences that were little more than shadowing. This was not unique to my DO school, and I heard much of the same from students that I bumped into from the VCOMs, Touro-NY, and WCU-COM.

Most COMs will have rotations in good sites and bad ones. If you end up at a DO school, you'll just have to do more research and pick/rank the sites you think you'll get the best education at.

There is definitely a difference in the quality of DO rotations compared to MD ones, but I honestly think the lack of preparedness of DOs for residency is overstated on SDN. I'm minimally if at all behind my cointerns (almost all MD) and the same is the case for the other DO from a different COM in our year. If it is something you're concerned of, just do a bunch of ACGME electives or sub-I's.

To be clear, I agree that generally speaking, you should only go to a DO school if you fail to get in to a US MD school. The reason for that is for better residency placement, not really because of the clinical rotations.
 

Señor S

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Then you might be in the wrong situation for your future goals. If you're trying to do neurosurgery at Harvard then yes it's an uphill battle. But the vast majority of what I've seen and heard talking to practicing physicians and doing research on certain programs there's DOs in more and more places. Nobody is a shoe in for the competitive specialties no matter where you go. An established DO school puts people in the big time spots as much as the lower tier MDs. More and more I've come to realize nobody really cares about your degree as long as you prove you can handle everything, unless you're gunning for crazy competitive stuff. Kill the USMLE and get good letters of rec like you would in any other school and you've got a shot that's all you can ask. Idk people **** on DOs much more than I believe is deserved. Is CCOM at the same level as UChicago? Not even close and most MD schools aren't. But all around residency slots in Chicago you see those grads. The bias is fading and past 2021 it'll be the same


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This is absolutely false and if you looked at e.g. the IM rosters for UChicago or Northwestern (since you mentioned Chicago specifically) you'd see quite a lot of low-tier MDs and no DOs at all. A place like Rosalind Franklin will still match more students into ACGME Ortho than probably every DO school in the country combined. Unfair perhaps, but that's just the way it is.
 
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Shov

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I didn't have any issue with my core rotations in med school. I was at a medium-sized community hospital with a decent number of residencies (not every specialty, but almost all the cores and a number of fellowships). They were mostly AOA programs, but now most have transitioned and are ACGME accredited. We had regular didactics and now being at a big university center for residency, the overall flow wasn't that different, except for maybe surgery.

I ranked my site because it had all the cores, had a lot of residencies, and had a good number of students. I also did my electives/subI's in the first half of 4th year at ACGME programs (did some rural and 1 on 1 rotations in small hospitals post-match).

That said, not everyone had the same experience as me. Some people were in small hospitals with little more than a FM residency. Others had to go to outside sites for 2 or so cores. Some even had experiences that were little more than shadowing. This was not unique to my DO school, and I heard much of the same from students that I bumped into from the VCOMs, Touro-NY, and WCU-COM.

Most COMs will have rotations in good sites and bad ones. If you end up at a DO school, you'll just have to do more research and pick/rank the sites you think you'll get the best education at.

There is definitely a difference in the quality of DO rotations compared to MD ones, but I honestly think the lack of preparedness of DOs for residency is overstated on SDN. I'm minimally if at all behind my cointerns (almost all MD) and the same is the case for the other DO from a different COM in our year. If it is something you're concerned of, just do a bunch of ACGME electives or sub-I's.

To be clear, I agree that generally speaking, you should only go to a DO school if you fail to get in to a US MD school. The reason for that is for better residency placement, not really because of the clinical rotations.
Wanted to drop in and say this whole rotations stuff premeds/med students obsess over is really blown out of proportion on this site. Yes, if you spend 2 years in an outpatient practice, you're not going to have the greatest experience when you start intern year, but to be honest, the learning curve is pretty steep anyway, so unless you just roll brutal rotations the 2nd half of fourth year, you won't be any more/less prepared than most. Learn / do as much as you can 3rd year, do some solid aways/sub Is, then join the ranks of the living dead as an intern.
 

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as the above poster said, it's all overblown. No one is going to expect new interns to know anything. And if you're that concerned about your clinical rotations - do some aways and ace them. If a PD questions your education (which seems a little absurd to me be w.e.) just point to those grades. Cheers.
 
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Wanted to drop in and say this whole rotations stuff premeds/med students obsess over is really blown out of proportion on this site. Yes, if you spend 2 years in an outpatient practice, you're not going to have the greatest experience when you start intern year, but to be honest, the learning curve is pretty steep anyway, so unless you just roll brutal rotations the 2nd half of fourth year, you won't be any more/less prepared than most. Learn / do as much as you can 3rd year, do some solid aways/sub Is, then join the ranks of the living dead as an intern.
As a PGY-3 and a DO, this is the correct answer.
 

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as the above poster said, it's all overblown. No one is going to expect new interns to know anything. And if you're that concerned about your clinical rotations - do some aways and ace them. If a PD questions your education (which seems a little absurd to me be w.e.) just point to those grades. Cheers.
One has to wonder why 4 years of med school instead of 3 (2X18 months)...
 
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Azete

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One has to wonder why 4 years of med school instead of 3 (2X18 months)...
It basically is 3 years, 4th year is a vacation that you pay ~$40k for.

That will never change for obvious (money) reasons.
 
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It varies even within the school and the department. I've seen people go to these GME centers and get a worse education than going to a small clinic nowhere because at the hospital all they did was get paperwork for the resident or something the resident didn't want to do
 
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It varies even within the school and the department. I've seen people go to these GME centers and get a worse education than going to a small clinic nowhere because at the hospital all they did was get paperwork for the resident or something the resident didn't want to do
An example: I'm senior resident on OB service right now. Our intern went to a well known NYC school. Got 2 deliveries the other night; I asked if these were the first of her residency and she said "yep, and #2 and #3 ever" apparently she got one in med school that was "hands over hands" and that's it.

I think I did around 25 deliveries in med-school.

It's not as simple as "MD rotations are better".

MD rotations are far more likely to be in a residency setting. Navigating that is a skill. MD's come to internship with an understanding of how the system works; DO's often don't. That's the most significant difference.
 
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SLC

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Let's all ignore the trolling folks, the forum's been pretty good lately.
 
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An example: I'm senior resident on OB service right now. Our intern went to a well known NYC school. Got 2 deliveries the other night; I asked if these were the first of her residency and she said "yep, and #2 and #3 ever" apparently she got one in med school that was "hands over hands" and that's it.

I think I did around 25 deliveries in med-school.

It's not as simple as "MD rotations are better".

MD rotations are far more likely to be in a residency setting. Navigating that is a skill. MD's come to internship with an understanding of how the system works; DO's often don't. That's the most significant difference.
OB rotation? Thats a bit of cherry pick. Certain NYC schools' hospitals cater to a rich clinentele. I am pretty sure one of the women I delivered for is regularly seen on TV. I did not bother to ask if I would be allow to deliver or not. I too graduated with zero delivery because I did my OB at the flag ship.
 

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Ah the old classic of a young first year DO student, blissfully denying any problems. The usual cognitive dissonance of "well I don't wanna match at Harvard anyways".

The next phase in the cycle after denial is anger, this usually comes out around M3 year when reality starts to briefly si o in.

It's followed by acceptance, but then (as exemplified in this thread) denial manages to make a strong rebound.
Appreciate the generalization of me but being a non-trad with a lot of inpatient clinical experience really has shown me I don't want to match at harvard or do anything remotely in that realm. Never said DOs have it figured out but mine seems to have things together. I look forward to the opportunity to have more flexibility in scheduling some of my own rotations if I choose to, and the ability to see different patient demographics than the ones that come into the flagship. If wanted ortho or something academic I would've applied to more MDs. Sure I misspoke about DOs putting people in the higher places but given how many more MD schools there are theres always going to be more MDs in places. I personally have observed the whole DO vs MD thing to be pretty overblown, but maybe my hospital and my experience was an outlier. Just my N=1
 

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Appreciate the generalization of me but being a non-trad with a lot of inpatient clinical experience really has shown me I don't want to match at harvard or do anything remotely in that realm. Never said DOs have it figured out but mine seems to have things together. I look forward to the opportunity to have more flexibility in scheduling some of my own rotations if I choose to, and the ability to see different patient demographics than the ones that come into the flagship. If wanted ortho or something academic I would've applied to more MDs. Sure I misspoke about DOs putting people in the higher places but given how many more MD schools there are theres always going to be more MDs in places. I personally have observed the whole DO vs MD thing to be pretty overblown, but maybe my hospital and my experience was an outlier. Just my N=1
Seriously man, just ignore him. He's just here to get a reaction.
 
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SLC

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OB rotation? Thats a bit of cherry pick. Certain NYC schools' hospitals cater to a rich clinentele. I am pretty sure one of the women I delivered for is regularly seen on TV. I did not bother to ask if I would be allow to deliver or not. I too graduated with zero delivery because I did my OB at the flag ship.
Cherry pick? Is OB not a clinical rotation?
 
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DrfluffyMD

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Cherry pick? Is OB not a clinical rotation?
Yes, cherry pick, as it's literally the only clinical rotation besides family medicine where people in big named place may get a worse experience for the reason I stated above.
 

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Yes, cherry pick, as it's literally the only clinical rotation besides family medicine where people in big named place may get a worse experience for the reason I stated above.
That sure sounds like black and white thinking to me. It's not that simple out in the real world. Pretending like it is just betrays ignorance on the matter.

I've had a few co-residents from THE stereotypical big name school claim that their clinical education was actually very lacking and they didn't feel adequately prepared for Intern year. Now, I know that their feelings aren't universal; but I don't struggle with all or nothing thinking either.
 
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That sure sounds like black and white thinking to me. It's not that simple out in the real world. Pretending like it is just betrays ignorance on the matter.

I've had a few co-residents from THE stereotypical big name school claim that their clinical education was actually very lacking and they didn't feel adequately prepared for Intern year. Now, I know that their feelings aren't universal; but I don't struggle with all or nothing thinking either.
It's black and white because it's a black and white matter. In teritary centers, students get exposed to bigger diversity of pathology, more new ideas and research in pipeline, and a more academic environment.

Most people in medical education recognizes this. Most PD recognizes this and rank their applicants accordingly. This can explain some of the hurdle DOs face in the match.

Coincidentally DO clinical education in primary care is often better and can explain why many DO go into primary care.
 

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It's black and white because it's a black and white matter. In teritary centers, students get exposed to bigger diversity of pathology, more new ideas and research in pipeline, and a more academic environment.

Most people in medical education recognizes this. Most PD recognizes this and rank their applicants accordingly. This can explain some of the hurdle DOs face in the match.

Coincidentally DO clinical education in primary care is often better and can explain why many DO go into primary care.
You're entire premise seems to be that DO's aren't rotating in tertiary care centers; exposed to research, diverse pathology, or academics. That's not the case.

Some DO students don't; others do. I had that exposure in Med-school. I also had experiences in other settings that I felt were just as strong/stronger.

It's also weird to me that you feel so qualified to comment on this. Not being a DO and not having experienced both types of rotation environments I'm not sure why you feel you have any actual insight here.
 

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You're entire premise seems to be that DO's aren't rotating in tertiary care centers; exposed to research, diverse pathology, or academics. That's not the case.

Some DO students don't; others do. I had that exposure in Med-school. I also had experiences in other settings that I felt were just as strong/stronger.

It's also weird to me that you feel so qualified to comment on this. Not being a DO and not having experienced both types of rotation environments I'm not sure why you feel you have any actual insight here.
I have experienced non teritary center because the center I've trained in had both types of sites where I worked along side DOs. I have also worked along side of DOs throughout my entire residency who have told me in no uncertain terms that they wished for better clinical education. I am not sure where you have trained, but at our flagship site we do not rotate with DO students nor were there any DO residents, so I have some unique insights about the med student training at the flag ship that a typical DO student may not get to experience.

Now what unique insight do you bring?
 
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I have experienced non teritary center because the center I've trained in had both types of sites where I worked along side DOs. I have also worked along side of DOs throughout my entire residency who have told me in no uncertain terms that they wished for better clinical education. I am not sure where you have trained, but at our flagship site we do not rotate with DO students nor were there any DO residents, so I have some unique insights about the med student training at the flag ship that a typical DO student may not get to experience.

Now what unique insight do you bring?
Because there weren't DO's at your flagship site; the logical extension for you is that DO's don't get to do rotations in those types of hospitals?

I did a handful of rotations in two different tertiary referral centers in Utah and Oregon (FM sub-I), IM (Sub-I), OB/Gyn, General Surgery, Pediatrics, MICU)

And maybe your DO co-residents really wished for stronger clinical education; but I'm actually quite happy with how mine was. More likely your colleagues were just trying to tell you what it seemed like you probably wanted to hear.
 
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DrfluffyMD

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Because there weren't DO's at your flagship site; the logical extension for you is that DO's don't get to do rotations in those types of hospitals?

And maybe your DO co-residents really wished for stronger clinical education; but I'm actually quite happy with how mine was. More likely your colleagues were just trying to tell you what it seemed like you probably wanted to hear.
Unfortunately not many DOs (if any) do 3rd year rotation at my flagship, or other top 20 teritary center that I know of. I truly wish they would have the experience available to them.

I think our 4th year rotations were open to DO students and some do rotate through, but rarely because our residencies unfortunately do not have a track record of taking DO students.
 
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Unfortunately not many DOs (if any) do 3rd year rotation at my flagship, or other top 20 teritary center that I know of. I truly wish they would have the experience available to them.

I think our 4th year rotations were open to DO students and some do rotate through, but rarely because our residencies unfortunately do not have a track record of taking DO students.
I promise you, DO's have plenty of opportunities available to them that are just as valuable to their learning and clinical skills development. Just because they aren't always in a "top-20 university flagship hospital" shouldn't be an assumption of inferior training.

I get why people do it. Nuanced analysis takes time and effort. Blanket statements are easier.
 

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It's black and white because it's a black and white matter. In teritary centers, students get exposed to bigger diversity of pathology, more new ideas and research in pipeline, and a more academic environment.

Most people in medical education recognizes this. Most PD recognizes this and rank their applicants accordingly. This can explain some of the hurdle DOs face in the match.

Coincidentally DO clinical education in primary care is often better and can explain why many DO go into primary care.
As a medical student I am still trying to wrap my head around why any of this really matters. We are so early in our clinical education that becoming experts in bread and butter cases should be the focus - especially in 3rd year - and you don't absolutely need to be at a large tertiary center to do this.
 

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You CAN get a good rotational experience in DO clinical years... but you have to be prepared to do your own research and legwork, which usually ends up with at least a couple of individual rotational experiences to be subpar. This is to be expected: a DO student isn't an expert in arranging clinical rotations! And unfortunately you generally can't trust your school administration to give you any unbiased information to help you out. They have a vested interest in keeping their rotations set up as they are. And if you are applying ACGME they will most likely not have any idea how to advise you and what kinds of rotational experiences would be beneficial for you.

My school had a "core rotation" site experience for 3rd year and then I primarily arranged my 4th year rotations. When I was looking for a core site for 3rd year, I didn't pay as much attention to the specific hospital or location, I chose it based on who was going to be my rotations coordinator. After I had a chance to talk to her, she was the ONLY person at the school who got excited when I started bringing up possibilities for non-standard, distant, or reach-type rotations. And it turned out to be the best decision I made in medical school because she took her position seriously to be an advocate for me, even when the main campus didn't want to approve my international rotation and some other things they didn't find important.

Long post I guess, sorry. DO rotations are hard because you don't know enough at the time to know how/if they are deficient unless you are the kind of person who questions everything and then is willing to do something about it

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