Monday, December 06, 2010

Med Students

We deal with a lot of students. Nursing students, medic students, PA and NP students. The overwhelming majority are med students. Their third and fourth years are spent doing the rounds through the different departments and specialties. I guess the idea is that they will get a taste of everything and then know what they want to be when they grow up. I mostly see them when they are on trauma (third year) and when they do ER electives (fourth year). 

One thing I have found... they are not created equal. They ones that I seem to click with the most are the ones who have had real life experiences. They have worked real jobs and know that life isn't handed on a silver platter. One of my best buddies (and a damn good doc) was a bar tender prior to med school. She is able to relate to people on a real level. I think that is why she is so successful. I have run into students who have never had a real job. Their whole existence has been focused on "becoming a doctor." I think once that happens they have to realize what was lost in the process. How can you be a doctor for people if you don't really know who people are?

That's one of the things that I do love about emergency medicine. We see everybody. A couple of weeks ago I took care of a state senator.... and then some drunk dude who wanted "512's" (512=percocet.... one of the many lessons I have learned). I have cared for nobel prize winners, celebrated physicians and minor celebrities. My last night in the trauma room I was the nurse for a cute 23 year old navy kid who is being deployed and a young girl who starts nursing school in a couple of weeks. 

My students that night in the trauma room were great. One was a city medic who is going through med school. Most of the medics that I know who have gone through med school have been excellent. There are a few who have forgotten where they came from. They forget that going through school doesn't make you better or more important.... just a little more, or differently educated. 

I try not to forget where I have come from. I remember what it was like to be new and learning things. I think that's why I like students so much. I love teaching... when they want to be there and learn. 

Ok, boring as hell today, this I know. I will have to remember some more of the night that stupid fell from the sky and update then!


Blogger Cartoon Characters said...

Not boring. Far from it. Never! :)

I agree with your assessment that "not created equal". And - the best are those with life experiences.

I love students long as they are open to learning....

12:57 PM  
Blogger Plusheep said...

The students are really lucky to have someone like you to be working with, who remembers what it's like to learn :) And what you said about life experience is really refreshing. It's tempting to think that the people who will make the best doctors will be those who have dedicated their whole life to doing so and given up everything else. But, as you say, I realise this probably isn't the case!

3:54 PM  
Blogger battynurse said...

Being able to teach (and learn) is an awesome thing. I admit that as much as I like to teach when it comes to patients and even nursing students etc I'm not necessarily great at "training" someone. Especially not when it comes to the computer part of it. In past jobs where I've done office work training someone on the computer made me CRAZY!
I too would agree that not all med students or resident are created equal. I've seen some fabulous ones and some clueless ones. My favorite memory was when asking for a PRN order for ativan for a combative (huge) patient who we were putting in restraints for slugging a security guard. The resident suggested 0.5mg. The first words out of my mouth were "Dude, have you seen this patient? He's huge how about if we start with 2mg?" The resident didn't seem to mind and asked me if that was an ok dose. Um. yeah.
Maybe one of these days I'll get brave enough to try the ED. I'm sure it would be a fascinating experience.

8:18 PM  
Blogger justAlan said...

I agree with the others. Never boring! Just keep speaking your mind and relating .....whatever.

4:34 AM  

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