Shadowing: Getting Started

My internship at UC Davis Med Center began immediately following our HAPS conference in Vegas.  So, while others were touring the Hoover Dam or the Grand Canyon, I had a daylong drive north.  For the three months I rented a room in walking distance, but it’s not a very good neighborhood for walking.

tahoepark-w2e
tahoepark-w2e (Photo credit: sc0ttbeardsley)

My first day was hospital orientation.  Fifty pre-meds needing badges for access to the medical center.  To pass inspection we needed a number of health documents.  I hadn’t seen proof of my own childhood immunizations so blood titers and boosters sufficed.  After paying $5 we were ready for a weekend long crash course in, of all things, human anatomy!

I must say I felt pretty comfortable hearing medical student summarize the systems.  The only new information was on taking patient histories and physical exams (neither of which we are allowed to do).  The fact that they stressed directional terms made me feel good about teaching it to my students.  And happy to say before my first shift in the med center I passed all of the quizzes at the required level of B or better.

I chose three shifts a week to start, the surgical specialties I’ll be shadowing are assigned.  The busiest shift during the week is 6am to 1pm, followed by the 1-7pm.  NIght shifts, 7pm to 2am usually only cover traumas or emergency medicine.  I’m sticking to weekdays for my first month.  Cross your phalanges for me!

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