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Ask the person below you

Discussion in 'Studying Medicine' started by dapurplepizza, Jul 24, 2017.

  1. dapurplepizza

    dapurplepizza Member

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    Haha, I just thought to have bit of fun with this thread and have something different from the usual stressing / ethical dilemma questions :p

    Ask the person below you a question related to studying medicine/being in medicine whether it's from classes, reflections, lodging, placements, favourite stethoscope, etc!

    I'll start: What are your clinical placements and which hospitals are you hoping to get internship in?

    p.s (is this type of thread even allowed? eo tell me if this goes against any rules and ill delete asap!)
  2. GV

    GV Regular Member

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    I'm still early in my degree so probably not best to answer the questions lol.

    But I'm currently in pre-clin but on 6 months of GP placements at the moment alongside pre-clin. Hospital I'd like to get internship in... Any metro Sydney hospital probably, atm I'm liking Gastro so I guess I'd have to find somewhere strong with physician training?? Either going back to South Australia in PGY2 or staying in Sydney, depending on life circumstances at the time.

    Person below me, what do you like and dislike so far about medicine?
    LMG! likes this.
  3. Mana

    Mana Intern (UNDS MBBS) Administrator

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    Junior Medical Officer
    Likes: getting paid.
    Being somewhat useful.
    Hilarious aged care patients.
    When mah patients get better.
    Competent work colleagues (including some very awesome nursing staff).

    Dislikes: When my consultant takes over care of a patient with a long admission under another team just so they can add two lines to the discharge summary.
    Patients that pull their cannulas out after you put them in under ultrasound guidance or with anaesthetics. Similar for NG tubes.
    Acopic nursing staff or grossly incompetent colleagues.
    Rubber keyboards that don't register keypresses (ordered for 'infection control' but with no regard for continuity of patient care) and add hours to your ward round.

    Question for person below me:

    If you could add any additional selection criterion to medicine entrance, what would it be, and how would it change the medical student cohort?
  4. frootloop

    frootloop Not this time. Moderator

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    I kind of like the idea of testing whether medicine is right for the applicant, rather than just whether the applicant is right for medicine. Things like trying to quantify:
    - What candidates' career expectations/desires actually are (length of training, hours worked, work-life balance, pay etc. Also what they actually like doing - talking to people? Academics? Etc)
    - What candates actually think medicine is like, in terms of the things above (and does that line up with reality, and what their own career expectations are)
    - Some sort of resilience testing? This would probably be the easiest of these things to quantify semi-reliably, and would probably be the most important/least changeable.

    ?Might reduce depression/anxiety rates if fewer people find themselves in a job that wildly differs from what they'd wanted/expected.

    It'd be tricky to do reliably though - do the career expectations of 17-24 year olds actually persist? Could you quantify those things reliably - and could applicants just be trained to give the 'right' answers? And, of course, would quantifying those things actually help you to pick 'better' doctors?

    Idk, I just think that a lot of people who would be much happier in other careers end up in medicine because they've woefully misunderstood what it's all about. Then they end up feeling 'trapped' in a career they're not overly thrilled with - or they drop out with large student loans and little to show for it. In the unlikely scenario that you could quantify all of this stuff and use it to select out the people who really shouldn't be applying, I reckon it could help make for a happier workforce? Maybe?

    To the person below me:
    In keeping with what I've written above;
    - If you're not in medicine yet, what do you want out of a career, and how do you see yourself finding that in medicine?
    - If you're in medicine, has it fulfilled the expectations you went in with? If not, how have you dealt with that? Have you even considered throwing in the towel? (And what stopped you?).
  5. Benjamin

    Benjamin Intern (JCU MBBS) Administrator

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    Yes, I have absolutely considered throwing in the towel - in my fourth year I struggled with the fact that I moved teams almost every week, no one wanted to know who I was, my schedule was completely unpredictable, I always had assessment that was almost due (and seemed completely useless) & I had to support myself financially. At the time I was working at a fine dining restaurant as a waiter/running front of house and was making proportionally more money than I am currently making as an intern ... the job was easy, I enjoyed it & could have progressed in the career to a reasonable salary working as a manager. The stress at the time coupled with what looked like a never-ending barrage of work really made me question what I wanted to do & why the hell I was in medicine.

    Obviously I kept going and am now working as an intern. I think medicine has been almost exactly what I expected but that's largely because I had absolutely no idea what to expect - I got into the degree having no real drive to do it other than being drawn to the number of different pathways you could run down; the prospect of delaying setting myself to a definitive & unchangeable career path for at least 6 years appealed to 17 year old me. At the same time however my exposure to medicine was limited to say the least - I had seen the inside of an ED a couple times, I played cricket with an ED doctor who sometimes told me stories about work & sometimes I talked to a toxinologist about venoms that I knew through the university. That prospect of 'flexibility' in terms of choosing a career path has somewhat remained but is being rapidly limited by feasibility as I proceed with my junior years.

    I had and still have no realistic idea of what it is like to work as a registrar or consultant - I only know what I see the registrars doing at work & even that offers very limited insight. Its better than no insight but still not great; its surprising how many things happen behind the scenes at an intern level let alone the registrar / consultant level.

    Perhaps the thing that I actually enjoy the most at the moment/satisfies my expectation is being able to throw myself at a problem to try and fix it. As my training goes on the number of problems that I can realistically solve on my own is increasing & that feeling is pretty great, as is knowing that it will undoubtedly continue to expand. The thing that gets me the most frustrated/destroys my expectations is how much my communication style has had to change over the last 6 months alone because of work politics - this is something that I don't think will ever change and at best I can learn to deal with it and manage people appropriately.

    To the person below me:
    What are your expectations about medicine? What do you think its going to be like when you're studying/working? Do you have any fears or things you absolutely know you want to find out more about?
    Myst and frootloop like this.
  6. Kiwiology

    Kiwiology UOA FY BHSc 2017

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    I started to answer this so I'll finish it in fairness:

    I'm not a medico yet but I want to be a cash money millionaire that drives a Bentley, works 20 hours a week while getting mad respect and power and goes on long holidays to the south of France every summer to sunbathe and swim in the Mediterranian; that's why I am going to become an orthopod in the shortest possible timeframe and totally exit the public system.

    No, seriously, I have had enough jobs to know I want something fulfilling, where I don't have to answer to somebody who frets over tiny things like "somebody called for you and you were in the loo for 10 mins" or "OMG this email ...." or where working all day and moving a pile of paper from one side of the desk/screen to the other is an amazing day but nothing else happened, where I have reasonable reward for my talent, and reasonable conditions of employment and industrial representation, where I can apply my talent to good effect and I guess, that cliche sounding do something good with it.

    I very much enjoy variety and problem solving and fixing problems and being hands on (literally) and like a bit of a challenge so want to specialise in emergency or intensive care medicine. I'm not a "sit back and watch" kind of person and I like variety. Undifferentiated diagnosis and management is where it's at, or managing somebody with an unknown course from something acutely problematic.

    Studying: Hard ... basically the same as now but without the intense pressure of A/A+ grades to get in
    Working: Harder! House Surgeons don't have very good schedules (come on RDA, sort that out!) and it'll basically being a dogs body yada yada ... Reg should hopefully be better. My mate is an ED Reg and he has a pretty good deal; he feels so bad when the Med Reg comes down and this poor guy is basically working 8 days a week, 30 hours a day and my mate goes home exactly on time the overwhelming percentage of days and that's it with no afterwork.

    When I am working, however, I expect to be treated with dignity and as a human; not like I have been since coming back to NZ where employers seem to have a desire to pay you as little as possible, don't care what you have to say, expect more and more out of you, don't care if you have problems etc. I literally had my next level manager say to me within 2-4 weeks of starting my last job "I don't like you and I don't think you are very good at what you do" ... well, um, sorry? I have also had managers shout at me, call me a liarin frontt of other employees, belittle me, ask me to do things not in my job description (like outside of reasonable additions as required you know, I'm not a total jerk), tell me to come to work when I am sick or deny me legally protected provisions of employment (breach of either industrial legislation or employment agreement) and I'm not having a bar of it from anybody ever again. And if you don't like that, then you, and my union representative, and if required my union retained employment lawyer can have a meeting about it and you will be slapped with a personal grievance so fast your head will spin.

    I am squeemish; like I was almost physically ill watching some formulated brain specimens demonstrations the other day and watching for example surgical incisions (unless it's a basic I&D or something) makes me want to faint. But, seeing somebody with a femur at a different angle to their other leg or with a knife sticking out their chest, eh, no worries. Oh and burns and eyes, no. Just no. Like you burnt yourself on the stove and have a 1 cm square tiny first degree burn? Go see that doc over there, yes that's him .... gotta work on that.

    To the person below me: How will being a doc change in the future as you see it and what impact do you think it'll have on the bread-and-butter job of practising medicne?
  7. rustyedges

    rustyedges Moderator Moderator

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    Lol not the easiest question. Aside from all the unforeseeable tech changes such as gene therapy and AI , I think there's going to be more people living with chronic diseases, like lung/heart/renal/liver failure, instead of dying from them, and we'll start seeing a lot more people living well into their hundreds, which is going to bring a whole host of new issues. No idea what effect this will have on the day to day job though haha.

    Person below me, what is your current pipe-dream specialty?
  8. pi

    pi Monash MBBS(Hons) V, BMedSc(Hons) Moderator

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    Paediatric neuro-ophtho-rhino-otolaryngologist working 4 days a week (weekends and Wednesday off) split between both public and private appointments at large quarternary institutions in Melbourne or Sydney (of course I'll have properties in both cities), with occasional relief volunteer work in Africa and South-East Asia just to save vision, hearing, and lives in general.

    Pretty low aims, should be one in few years.

    loljks physician sounds good right now, of that perhaps neuro or rheum, but time will tell!

    Person below me: what's your biggest pieces of advice for a school-leaver wanting to get into undergrad medicine? What would your tips be? Would you warn them about anything (if so, what and why?)?
  9. mj1996

    mj1996 New Member

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    My biggest advice would be to do it for the right reasons. Its going to be a hard and long journey and its something you can only enjoy if you are in it because you love helping people, continually learning and enjoy interacting with patients, families and colleagues.
    Unfortunately when you begin clinical medicine, you most likely will come across people with large egos who like to put others down and it is important to develop resilience and not let things people say to you hurt your confidence and self esteem, we all have to learn somewhere and also, make sure you don't pick up these bad traits, because believe me, you will come across them!!

    Person below me: what has surprised you most about medicine?

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