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Senior Member
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Jan 25, 2004
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I am a premedical student trying to learn more about what life in medical school will be like and how much time I'll have for my wife and kids. Can you tell me how the rotations generally work. Do you have the choice of doing all your rotations at one hospital so that you don't have to be away from your family for weeks. (as in, could we could move to the town and work from there) Also, what will my free time for my family be like during these years?



Quantum Member
10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Jul 25, 2003
Winston Salem, NC
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Attending Physician
Usually there is plenty of time during years 1-2 for family. During the clinical years your free time is highly variable. During 3rd year you should plan on having very little free time although you may have a significant amount. Locations are highly variable from school to school. At Penn State it is possible to have all your rotations here at Hershey and priority is given to those with "extenuating" circumstances (like having a family with kids). Most schools hand out rotation sites by a lottery system where you can state a preference but have to take what you get in the lottery. At Penn State all the sites are within an hour or so of Hershey but some schools have rotation sites that are considerably farther away.

From the osteo students I've talked to, they generaly have more flexibility with rotation locations although the hospitals tend to be smaller occasionally without residency programs in the rotation specialty. At most allo programs I know of the rotation locations are set in stone (for required rotations) and at larger hospitals. So if you think you need a lot of flexibility you could try osteo (although your rotation sites may be farther from the school itself) or try allo programs with very large hospitals (that can accomodate the entire class for rotations).

As for me, I'm married with a kid so I can appreciate your concerns. It can be done, and as long as your family knows what they're getting into and that it's only for a short period of time, you can get through it.

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