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Shadowing a DO?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - DO' started by Atlas, Mar 29, 2001.

  1. Atlas

    Atlas Senior Member
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    I'm very interested in Osteopathic medicine and would like more information about how I might go about shadowing a DO. I've been told that calling their office out of the blue is a bad idea. Also, I've been told that it's better to know a DO outside of their work environment. I don't know any DOs...period. I'm dying to meet one, ask him/her some questions, and see osteopathic medicine in action. What would you recommend that I do in order to meet/shadow a DO?

    Thank you
     
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  3. zorro21

    zorro21 Senior Member
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    i didnt know any D.O.s when i was applying to med school. if i were you, i would look in the phone book for physicians who are D.O.s. I would also check out your local hosptials. call someone in personnel and tell them who you are and ask if there are any D.O.s on staff, attending and or residents. then, get their names and call them or write them a letter.
    i found 10 D.O.s in my phone book. i sent a letter to all 10 of them, but got only one response.
    at my hospital i found 2 attending D.O.s and 2 residents. i called them, and i got the letters of rec i needed.
    be honest with the DOCs. tell them what you need, a letter of recommendation, tell them your life story, and ask if you can shawdow them in their clinic for a few afternoons.
    good luck.
     
  4. Atlas

    Atlas Senior Member
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    Thank you for your excellent reply. I thought about calling some of the DOs in my area. How come some many DOs weren't willing to help you out? They were in your shoes once before! That really irks me. I want to just call them up and see if I can meet with them, but I've been told that this is not the best way to handle it. I would write a letter, but my printer is jacked up. I'd much rather give them a call anyway. I'm worried that calling them at the office might make them upset. I understand that physicians lead pretty secluded and padded lives. It's damn near impossible to get a doctor on the phone to talk to you when you're sick! What's a pre-meddy to do???!!
     
  5. zorro21

    zorro21 Senior Member
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    write the letter. take your floppy disk to the library and print the letter there. i just think that you would have a better chance of them understanding what you want them to know with a letter. they can read it at THEIR leisure. what if you call them and catch them at a bad time? they may not call you back!
     
  6. Steev2000

    Steev2000 Member
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    Call them!! I have called a few DO's in my town and all of them at least called me back and were more than happy to have me come down and shadow as well as answer any questions that I had. They were excited to see up and comers getting interested in their field. Besides, the worst that can happen is they say no. Don't sweat it and call the next one. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how willing they are to help. At the same time, doctors are extremely busy, so if you don't get a call back right away, don't take it negatively. Good luck and take care!
     
  7. I think it would be awesome to shadow a DO as I only recently learned that there was something other than an MD. But I'm only a lowly freshman! Is it premature to shadow? And if it is, when is a more appropriate time?
    Oh, btw... there are only 3 DO's where I live. That's such a small number! With what I've read about osteopathic medicine, one would think that there would be more people in the field. If OMM works, why aren't there more DO's?
    [​IMG],
    Kate
     
  8. Atlas

    Atlas Senior Member
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    I see we have two distinct camps now. One is in favor of a letter. The other is in favor a phone call. Drummergirl, what would you do? I know you said you're a lowly freshman, but we're in the same boat. I would like to hear what you would do. I was gonna try calling them at first and see if I get any responses. If not, I would try the letter idea. What do y'all think about that strategy?
     
  9. .

    [This message has been edited by drummergirl (edited March 31, 2001).]
     
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  11. Oooooook... SDN doesn't like me! Not quite sure how I quoted myself, and I couldn't delete it. [​IMG]
     
  12. healthydawg

    healthydawg Member
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    i'm on fire tonight...

    i wrote a post about this very issue a while back. if you can find it, i think i put some decent advice there (if i do say so myself). anyway, let's see if i can replicate it now...

    first, are you doing anything in the health field right now? i mean, do you volunteer at a hospital or work at a clinic or something? if so, i'd start there. let people know you're interested in osteopathic medicine and that you want to shadow one. you may be surprised at what turns up. i found the first DO i talked to through a clerk i used to work with (in public health) who transferred to a hospital. i casually mentioned this stuff to her one day and lo and behold a while later i got a call from her telling me to call dr. such-and-such, DO. why? because SHE already talked to him on my behalf! go figure...

    anyway, barring this, write a letter (print it at the library) and call to follow up. if one doc doesn't help you, move on. it's not because they hate you, but rather that they're busy. here's some advice, think carefully about what you're going to say before you call. i like one of the above poster's remarks; be clear about what you want. i straight up told the docs i talked to i couldn't get in without a letter and i couldn't get a letter unless i shadowed one of them. when you finally go there, think of it as an interview of sorts. remember, you're asking him/her to evaluate you and write a letter on your behalf. i was very lucky in that the doc i shadowed actually spent some time with me asking questions, answering questions, and getting to know me. of course, i had a resume ready for him when i got there, as well as a bunch of questions (all written down on a sheet of paper). being well prepared beforehand helped both of us a lot; it helped me get over my nervousness and him to not feel like he was wasting his time with a goofball.

    anyway, if you can't find a DO that way, try the following. first, contact the DO school nearest to you. they may have a list of graduates who are willing to help pre-meds such as yourself. even if they don't, they can give you some good advice. they get this question all the time. second, consider contacting your state or local medical board. they can at least tell you where some DOs are in your area. you'd be surprised how many docs AREN'T in the phone book. third, if your state has an osteopathic medical society, contact them as well. they might be able to help.

    don't be discouraged, you'll find someone if you keep on it. good luck.
     

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