Scribing Job vs EMT Bay Area

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by redbird1133, Aug 1, 2015.

  1. redbird1133

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    So I currently have a job as an EMT, which is obviously really great hands on experience. Problem is, I think I'd prefer to work in a hospital setting- after all, I do want to be a physician. Do you think it would reflect poorly at all if I did EMT for only a month or so and then switched to scribing? I feel like working with a physician and gaining insight into their thought process would be invaluable for my future.

    And does anyone have any experience getting a scribing job at a hospital, particularly in the Bay Area?

    Thanks for any insight!
     
  2. dfib slim

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    #2 dfib slim, Aug 1, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2016
  3. slopes23

    slopes23 Parlors & Poop Shoots
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    So this is a Pre-Allopathic forum question, not Allopathic. There are more readers there that are better suited to answer you question.

    Answering your question, EMT is not as helpful as pre-meds make it to be. It's not to say that it's hurtful, but it's a totally different career path. EMT is not meant to be a precursor to medical school. It's supposed to be a precursor to Paramedic school, and not only does your training have a totally different thought process in terms of how you should think of things and your role in the healthcare delivery model, you are potentially taking away a spot from an EMT who actually does want to make a career out of it.

    Thinking that it will help you in your physical exam skills so it must be a good idea is short sighted. Number one, you don't need a head start. Medical school is structured to thoroughly teach you the physical exam without any past experience. Moreover, many other areas of your training are likely to suffer as you will likely think, oh I know this, I learned it while I was an EMT, I got this, move on to someone else. However again, the way a physician thinks and does things is different than an EMT, and the only thing worse than a useless M3 on rotations is a useless M3 who thinks they aren't [useless].

    Also, scribing isn't "invaluable". I was a scribe, it's fun, it's useful in gaining some comfort with drug names/diagnoses(what they mean, not how you arrive to them), proper note writing form etc, and more importantly it looks nice for medical school but if your biggest take away come interview time is, "well I really feel like I gained invaluable insight into the thought process of a physician" you are going to tank big time during your interviews.

    Lastly, let me repeat. This is the wrong sub-forum for this and should be asked/moved to the Pre-Allopathic forum where you have a better suited readership to answer this question.
     
    #3 slopes23, Aug 1, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2015
  4. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    Why dont you post this in pre-allopathic where this belongs?
     
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  5. AM508

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    I personally think EMS is probably better than a scribe job, through I will admit some conflict of interest as was a paramedic for a dozen or so years before going to medical school. As paramedics we were totally responsible for patients for the entire shift with minimal supervision, whereas scribes are really shadowing + documentation. I think the hands-on experience of paramedic was very valuable and there is definitely much more leadership than a scribing position. But at the end of the day either will suffice and neither will give you any semblance of an upper hand in school once you get started.
     
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  6. redbird1133

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    Wow sorry I posted in the wrong place, it was an accident!

    I'm confused at you saying EMT won't be hurtful as everything you described is clearly hurtful to a career as a physician... You seem cynical about both of these clinical experience suggestions I've been pursuing/potentially pursuing, do you have any actual advice or just criticism at these choices?
     
  7. slopes23

    slopes23 Parlors & Poop Shoots
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    ... Not sure where you interpreted what I wrote as me recommending you got the EMT route. Just about every part of what I wrote was encouraging you to go the scribe route. EMT would not "hurt" your application, but it won't "help your application as much as you think or as much as a good scribe job would.

    If you can't surmise advice from what I wrote then there is even less hope for you. Simple advice is take the scribe job.

    The more nuanced/important advice is what you are able to take away from an experience and how you can talk about it. Move completely away from this job or that job. Make it simple and relate it to research. Let's say you worked in this big name lab, did all this really cool stuff, and even got published. Your friend worked in a decent lab, didn't get published, and had an average research experience. You go interview and you have very little take away from your research other than, it was awesome, I got published, and it was amazing to see the inner working of high caliber research lab. I worked specifically on this, and I feel like it was just overall a great experience. Sorry, but that just lacks substance. If your friend can take that "average" experience but talk about his experience and what he learned in a substantive matter he would beat you out every time even though on paper he shouldn't.

    There is more to scribing (or EMT for that matter) than an answer to "what was your favorite thing about being a scribe" when you go to interview. More than that, if all you can say is, well I loved being able to get a glimpse into the thought process of a physician and feel like it better prepared me to become one, it will be seen as super artificial and shallow. Moreover, it shows you never took the time to a) either think about your experiences and what you learned/earned from them, or b) you never took the time to take that experience to the next level or c) both.

    It's all about the take away.

    There is not as much voodoo as some people make it seem to get into medical school. It's takes a little bit of planning, a lot of follow through, some leadership and commitment, and finally some self analysis to put it vaguely.

    Now, scurry back to the Pre-Allo forum where this platitudinous question belongs.
     
  8. Jabbed

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    Having done both for several years, my vote is for scribing.
     
  9. styphon

    styphon Senior Member
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    I would disagree with this, but it depends on how you get your experience.

    I was an EMT on a busy 911 service (not a transport service, important difference) and volunteered about 24 hrs /wk for 4 years. By the time of medical school I had extensive experience with cardiac arrests and other emergencies. I also developed experience dealing with grieving/anxious families and dealing with death myself as I had been on ~100 calls ending in death.

    I found during medical school I was better prepared for dealing with patient deaths, grieving families, and anxious parents. I found that some EMT emergency/trauma knowledge helped me on tests - specifically clinical shelves.
     
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