Choosing between clinical specialties before applying to med school

Which is the best option to prepare for medical school?

  • UNC Ambulatory Surgery

    Votes: 3 42.9%
  • UNC Family Medicine

    Votes: 4 57.1%
  • UNC-PN Carolina Advanced Health

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • UNC Per Diem in Outpatient Clinic/Pharmaceutical Company

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    7
Nov 11, 2015
7
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi everyone!

So a quick summary about me: I have a BS Biology from UNC Chapel Hill and decided to pursue medical assisting (CMA) to get some clinical experience prior to medical school. I've interviewed and have offers from:
  • UNC Ambulatory Surgery Clinic
  • UNC Family Medicine (would have to work 2-6 months on front desk prior to patient care)
  • UNC-PN Carolina Advanced Health (specializes in chronic conditions, ex. HTN, asthma, etc.)
  • UNC Outpatient Clinics (part time/per diem position in various clinics)
Currently, I work at a pharmaceutical company as a clinical assistant. The original plan was to keep this job part time (long enough to cash in stocks at least) and work as a CMA part time. However, I just wanted to get everyone's opinion. I would really appreciate any advice you have!

Thank you!
Carolina
 

GCS-15

2+ Year Member
Aug 4, 2015
412
232
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
I think it depends on your interests more than the interests of others. They all sound like pretty cool options (except the front desk part for FM). Do you already have primary care shadowing/clinical experience? I think that's pretty important exposure.
 
OP
C
Nov 11, 2015
7
0
Status
Pre-Medical
I think it depends on your interests more than the interests of others. They all sound like pretty cool options (except the front desk part for FM). Do you already have primary care shadowing/clinical experience? I think that's pretty important exposure.
Hi GCS-15! Thank you so much for your response. I would honestly like to do UNC FM because they also specialize in sports medicine and perform procedures such as biopsies and coloposcopies in the clinic. I think in family medicine, I would be able to see a lot while getting one-on-one training with the providers. However, I feel as though the phone/front desk task is a pretty large downside. In surgery, it's a lot of wound care/casting and hands-on tasks, but I wouldn't really get to shadow the doctors as much. I already have about 225 hours of working in UNC Kidney and Hypertension, but not primary care.
 
OP
C
Nov 11, 2015
7
0
Status
Pre-Medical
What do you mean by "getting one on one training with the providers"?


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Hi candbgirl, at UNC Family Medicine, they use the "model cell" when providing patient care. So every provider has an MA assigned to them for the day that works up all of their patients, discusses the patient with the provider, and carries out any orders for that one provider. For example, if Provider H is only doing colposcopies for the day, then the CMA for Provider H will learn how to set up/clean up/assist during coloposcopies. I think this is really interesting because there isn't necessarily a wall between providers and non-providers, and CMAs are a lot more involved in the entire visit of one patient this way. During my tour, the provider and CMA pairs were set up in cubicles together, so this may be a good opportunity to learn directly from the provider.
 

AnatomyGrey12

2+ Year Member
Sep 8, 2015
9,270
18,719
Midwest
Status
Medical Student
Hi candbgirl, at UNC Family Medicine, they use the "model cell" when providing patient care. So every provider has an MA assigned to them for the day that works up all of their patients, discusses the patient with the provider, and carries out any orders for that one provider. For example, if Provider H is only doing colposcopies for the day, then the CMA for Provider H will learn how to set up/clean up/assist during coloposcopies. I think this is really interesting because there isn't necessarily a wall between providers and non-providers, and CMAs are a lot more involved in the entire visit of one patient this way. During my tour, the provider and CMA pairs were set up in cubicles together, so this may be a good opportunity to learn directly from the provider.
If the provider isn't an MD or DO then it won't help you for medical school all that much
 

GCS-15

2+ Year Member
Aug 4, 2015
412
232
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
Hi GCS-15! Thank you so much for your response. I would honestly like to do UNC FM because they also specialize in sports medicine and perform procedures such as biopsies and coloposcopies in the clinic. I think in family medicine, I would be able to see a lot while getting one-on-one training with the providers. However, I feel as though the phone/front desk task is a pretty large downside. In surgery, it's a lot of wound care/casting and hands-on tasks, but I wouldn't really get to shadow the doctors as much. I already have about 225 hours of working in UNC Kidney and Hypertension, but not primary care.
I'd do the Carolina Advanced Health if I were you.
 

purplegold201635

5+ Year Member
May 29, 2014
131
94
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
I would do family med. The first couple months might suck, but once you rock out the front desk you will be able to see a lot of different types of cases. Also, working front desk will teach you a lot about scheduling and INSURANCE which is something a lot of premed students don't understand. Doing those things will give you good exposure to how medicine is structured in America.