I've finished my Paediatrics rotation. It kinda sucked. I loved the kids and could easily see myself working with kids, but my weekly placements within the rotation sucked, and that ruined it for me.
My first week was spent with the Renal team, and I was looking forward to solidifying my renal knowledge, and learning about kid-specific things too. But it was dull - with only one or two inpatients, there wasn't much for me to do. Clinics were the main part of the week, but it really gets dull sitting there, not interacting, hour after hour, day after day.
My second week was General Medicine. Two or three students are attached to each team, and we basically spent the whole time walking around on ward rounds that lasted several hours. Sometimes, if we were lucky, we got to write in the notes. Mostly we were ignored.
My third week was in the Child Development Unit. I'd already heard that it was pretty cruisy (finishing at lunchtime each day), and that was fine with me. But the time I spent there was pretty useless. One day I had to sit behind a one-way mirror to observe a session with an autistic kid, but they hadn't bothered to check whether the audio equipment was working, so I sat in silence and ended up playing with my iPhone for an hour. Then I was told that the doctors would be on a conference later in the week, so I really only experienced three half-days of questionable value.
My fourth week was Anaesthetics. I specifically requested it, and I'm glad I did. Everyone was friendly and they let me do lots of stuff, including cannulation and intubation. And during the operations I chatted to the anaesthetists about the pros and cons of their chosen career. Finally, a good placement!
My fifth week was General Surgery. It was SO frustrating. We had to be there at 7am for ward rounds. But the rounds never started before 8am - one day we waited until 8:30am! Not happy after getting up early to drive a considerable distance to be there on time. Also, on the first morning the registrars on our team told us that there was only one day of theatre that week because all the doctors would be at a conference. That also meant they wouldn't be admitting any patients, so there was absolutely nothing for us to do. They had three or four neonatal inpatients, so the ward round was over really quickly - and then later in the week, the NICU was closed because of a pertussis outbreak! While it was good to have spare time so close to exams, it was ultimately disappointing.
The other weeks were made up of lectures and exams. I passed the exams, but gave myself a bit of a scare. I had a brain freeze during the written, and ended up passing by one mark. I was convinced I'd failed. Similarly, I stuffed up one of the stations in the OSCE - I knew I'd failed that station, but had to pass the other three stations to pass the OSCE. Luckily I scraped through, but only just. I spent three days sick to my stomach with worry, constantly in tears - not the best when I was supposed to be studying! The annoying thing was that all of the exam questions (written and OSCE) were from past papers, so it should have been a breeze. I really need to get over this exam anxiety already.
Apart from Paeds, I've been continuing with the yearbook. We've collected profiles from most students now, though some are being particularly difficult about it. We've even got some "conscientious objectors" who don't want profiles in the yearbook. WTF? We'll be editing all the content over the next couple of weeks. It's slowly coming together...
And in my massive amount of spare time (yeah right), I'm helping to organise a Vietnam fundraising dinner and my friend's hen's night. I am mental.