The Mrs. The Mommy. The M.D.: Reflecting on My Clerkship Experience: Outpatient Pediatrics
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Friday, September 28, 2012

Reflecting on My Clerkship Experience: Outpatient Pediatrics

Another rotation down as of this morning! We are already one third of the way through third year!!

From the AAMC Careers in Medicine Clinical Evaluation 

1. Name and Location of Clinical Rotation: I got a chance to work around the city in a number of general pediatrics offices: 
  • Blackburn Health Complex - through the county hospital Wishard
  • Wishard Primary Care Center Pediatrics Scheduled Clinic
  • Wishard Primary Care Center Pediatrics Urgent Care Clinic
  • Wishard Primary Care Center Adolescent Clinic
  • Riley Children's Hospital Developmental Clinic
  • Riley Children's Hospital Emergency Room 
I really enjoyed working with all of the pediatricians I met the past two months. They were all so friendly, willing to teach, and encouraging. I feel like I learned so much!

2. What did I like most about this specialty? 
Working with children was a lot of fun. It was also great to feel like I really helped parents get through everyday illnesses/injuries confident that their child would pull through and be back to normal in no time.

I also really enjoyed working in the teenage clinic and helping young adults become more knowledgable of and accountable for their own health and well being. I also loved encouraging them as they shared their plans for the future/adulthood. 

3. What did I like least about this specialty? 
Just like with inpatient pediatrics, it was hard for me to see kids that were not doing so well - whether it was health or social issues - I hurt for the kids that I could not do more for. 

4. Did this clinical rotation give me a good sense of what practice in this specialty would be like?
I think I got a broad snapshot of what practicing outpatient community pediatrics would be like. 

5. Did my interests, values, skills and/or personality "fit" with this specialty? If yes, in what way did they "fit"? If no, why might they not be compatible? 
I think that I have great communication and interpersonal skills that would help tremendously as a pediatrician. I also think that being a parent really helped me to be effective in answering questions that other parents had about their child's health/development. I was also very comfortable relating to the teens and able to build rapport in order to talk about some of the more "sensitive" topics like sex, alcohol, and drug use. 

6. What are the possible practice settings for specialists in this field? Which of these settings interest me and do I know enough about them?
  • Community Clinic - Scheduled or Urgent Care
  • Emergency Room 
  • Educational Setting
7. What information do I still need to find out about this specialty? 
I am more interested in learning about the combined Internal Medicine-Pediatrics program. 

8. Has my perception of this specialty changed based on my clinical rotation experience?
Not really, I always knew I would like working with children :-) 

9. Did my clinical rotation experience influence the likelihood of choosing a career in this specialty? If yes, how did it influence me?
Although I do not think I would like to solely practice pediatrics, I know that I would miss having children and teens as patients if I was to just focus on adult medicine. 

10. Right now, on a scale of 1-10, how interested am I in this specialty as a career option?
I would say a 5 because I know that I would like to have pediatrics as a part of my practice but just not completely. 

11. Other comments or reflections about this rotation or specialty: 
Here are some of my favorite memories from this specialty/baby doc milestones...
  • I gave someone a flu shot!
  • I did a few strep throat swabs!
  • I diagnosed things correctly!
  • I spoke (although very rusty) Spanish to some patients and they complimented my speech!
  • I got teenagers to open up to me about their personal lives, and parents to take me seriously as a even though they initially rolled their eyes when I introduced myself as "Jasmine the medical student". 
  • When my own child was feeling under the weather this month, I knew exactly what to do and impressed his pediatrician with my astute clinical skills ;-) 
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