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patient exposure?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by jrpierce, Sep 27, 2001.

  1. jrpierce

    jrpierce New Member

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    I will be applying next year and was wondering what some people did for clinical experience? I shadowed a doc for 2 months this past summer and have done research for the last year. I'm looking for suggestions on how to get a meaningful position somewhere. Also, what is the opinion on primary care vs. a specialty. My premed advisor claims that it is pretty useless to work in some specialty because schools want you to have knowledge about primary care?? Did I spend 2 months in genetics for nothing?
     
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  3. English Chick

    English Chick Senior Member

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    If you speak a useful foreign language, you shouldn't have trouble finding great opportunities for patient exposure as a translator. I translated for ~18 months at a local community clinic, and it was just awesome. The doctors were always happy to see me, and were really willing to explain the relevant science/medicine to me. It was a terrific learning experience for me. By the end of my time there, they trusted me with some pretty basic patient advocay/education work too. Overall, a great experience.
     
  4. DNALadder2002

    DNALadder2002 Senior Member

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    What language did you translate? And how did you find a position like this?
     
  5. English Chick

    English Chick Senior Member

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    Spanish-English. In my case, finding the clinic was easy, since they are constantly soliciting volunteers from my university. But, I imagine you could just make some phone calls. I've heard even the larger hospitals are really in need of translation. Of course, I suppose the demand depends on where you live. Here in California, Spanish-English translators are in high demand, and I imagine that makes finding a volunteer position that much easier. Another cool opportunity I heard about (but didn't do), those groups that send American and Canadian doctors to developing nations for a couple of weeks (Faith in Practice, etc.) often need translators. My sister is spending a couple of weeks in Guatemala this spring, translating for some visiting surgeons.
     
  6. UCMonkey

    UCMonkey Senior Member

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    I volunteered in an ER while in high school, then they hired me. They let me keep the job in college and work on breaks and summers. You don't get any better variety of patient contact than in the ER. Also, little community hospitals are generally good, since they let you do more because they don't have as much specialized support staff.

    Just my 2 pennies on the subject.
     
  7. jrpierce

    jrpierce New Member

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    Thanks for the input but unfortunately I am monolinguistic. Guess I'll have to try something else.
     
  8. snowballz

    snowballz Senior Member

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    Look on your local hospitals website and find any volunteer information they may have there. Normally, they will give contact info for a volunteer coordinator. Ask what programs they have that involve patient care. Call them.

    I am volunteering at an IU Med School affiliated childrens hospital..I love it. I get patient contact with children, which I adore. Children are my absolute passion. But one thing I think is important is that you find something that is meaningful to YOU. Working in an ER doesn't push my buttons, so I don't do it. Reading to a child or watching a movie with them while they're on a dialysis machine does..so that's what I do. My heart is there..not stocking supplies.

    Alicia
     
  9. StitchEM

    StitchEM Senior Member

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    I volunteered thru my univerity at the local hospital for two years, then moved on to volunteer with the local hospice program working with surviving siblings and children in a breavement program. Also did researh with one of my bio prof. , not directly medically related but cool. I also did non-clinical volunteer work like science fair mentoring and fundrasing for a pre-med advisory newsletter some friends founded. Just whatever you do, be serious about it and have as much satisfaction as you can. I would say fun, but many times what you learn is tragic.
     
  10. snowballz

    snowballz Senior Member

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    Yes, most of the things you learn are tragic, but if it's your passion you will reap satisfaction from this. I do get satisfaction from helping a sick child. Helping the kiddlys is awesome.

    I agree with the previous poster, whatever you do, do it because it's your passion, NOT because it will get you an acceptance.

    Alicia :p
     
  11. PTjay

    PTjay Senior Member

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    absolutely do it because you want to do it. find something you're interested in and do that. i'm currently a PT student but want to go on to med school. i currently work at a local hospital as a PT aide and the patient contact i get is amazing. not only do i work with acute patients (take hr, bp, etc.) but i see post-op patients as well in rehab. great experience if you can get it, PT is still really popular and there are lots of students out there. good luck to you finding something you can get some meaningful experience in.
     
  12. showeeeeeeeee

    showeeeeeeeee Senior Member

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    Hey snowballz, that's terrific! I am going to volunteer at Children's hospital here in Seattle as soon as they have an opening. I've gone through the training already. Hopefully it will start in a couple weeks. I, too, will be spending time with children. If they are able, I will take them to the playroom for a couple hours, or if they need to stay in their room, I will bring stuff for us to do together. I'm so excited. I love children, and to be able to do something to help them have fun is so important.

    I'm a little scared about not having something to keep them occupied, or being boring. I think it should be ok because I'm generally really good with kids (I'm a goof)but that in combination with the fact that they're sick will definitely be a challenge. How long have you been at the IU children's hospital?

    Michele
     

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