Final Rotation

Tomorrow will mark the first day of my final clinical rotation of medical school.

shocked donald glover GIF

As I’m sitting here typing this, I can’t help but feel a strong sense of awe and wonder about how far I’ve come in my medical education. After spending so much time regarding the end of my fourth-year as a time that I’ll eventually come across in the distant future, it’s simply incredible that I’ve finally made it to this point. It’s hard to believe that I’ve gone through seventeen rotation blocks since starting my third-year clinical rotations back in May 2017.

SEVENTEEN.

I had to say it again because I almost didn’t believe it the first time I said it. I actually just counted them to make sure I wasn’t lying to you. Lol but yeah, my clinical experiences in all of those rotations have allowed me to not only increase my knowledge base in clinical medicine, but to also increase my confidence level in adequately caring for patients as a healthcare provider. I’m extremely grateful for this boost in confidence, because I’m going to need every ounce of it when I start my residency training this summer. 😅

The rotation that I’m starting tomorrow is Diagnostic Radiology, a specialty that hones in on the skillset required to accurately read X-Ray films, CT scans, MRI scans, etc. While it is known to be more of a chill rotation for medical students because there’s only so much you can do with scans and films at my level of training, I’m expecting to learn some of the tips & tricks that Radiologists use to read these kinds of images so that I can feel more comfortable doing so in the future. As a resident, it will be necessary for me to interpret radiologic images in order to provide effective care for my patients. Yeah yeah I know, all the images I come across will be read by Radiology residents and attendings and I’ll have the luxury of reading their official interpretation in their notes. However, I still want to acquire the ability of reading them on my own so that I don’t always have to rely on the interpretation of others to make my own clinical judgments. As y’all already know, I’m trying to be the best doctor that I can be!

I get my rotation schedule tomorrow at orientation, which I hope is as great as people have hyped it up to be. I don’t have to be there till 8:30 AM, which means that the rotation is already off to a great start! 😄

While I’m happy that I’m finally getting the opportunity to rotate through my Radiology elective, it comes with the unfortunate fact that my amazing Immigrant Health/Public Health rotation has come to an end. 😭 As you may already know from my previous posts, I’ve had some awesome experiences during my time on this rotation. This past week, I was afforded the opportunity to shadow a PA and a Nurse Practitioner in a Family Planning Clinic (literally felt like I was on my Ob/Gyn rotation again), I joined a few other families in attending a Brenner FIT class where I learned about the techniques that the program utilizes in order to change the relationship that kids have with the food they eat, I learned more about the roles that the Public Health Department play regarding case management in the lives of patients, I visited an STD testing site in the community that was being hosted by POSSE, I tagged along with a school nurse at a high school specifically designed for kids with special needs, and I ended the rotation on Friday afternoon with a debriefing session with one of the course coordinators and my friend who was completing the rotation with me. Just like in the weeks prior, this past week provided me with some eye-opening experiences that I otherwise would have probably never had if I hadn’t done this rotation. The debriefing session also gave us the opportunity to not only share with the coordinator feedback of our experiences, but to also give her some recommendations that could benefit the future students that will be completing this rotation next year.

Outside of participating in my rotation last week, I spent two of my mornings last week volunteering as a facilitator of one of the orientation activities for the rising third-year students. My station, which was shared with a faculty member and another classmate, mainly focused on the process of choosing a medical specialty to base one’s medical career on. This was pretty fitting for me for as you may already know, I went through a major switch in specialty interests during my third year (Ophthalmology –> Pediatrics) and at this station I was able to talk more in detail about this switch. There were a few other scenarios that we talked through as a group, and it was cool to be able to talk with these students as they begin to embark on the adventure of their clinical rotations. What a time, what a time.

Here is where I will end my post for today. I wish you great fortune and prosperity in the week ahead!

“We all have dreams. In order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline and effort.” – Jesse Owens

– Black Man, M.D.

P.S. – Can you believe that we’re already heading into March?? Man I love March…it means that Spring is around the corner, the days will be longer because of Daylight Savings, the temperature starts warming up for real, Match Day is coming up fast, and MARCH MADNESS SEASON BEGINS!! IT’S LIT!!! 😄🙌🏿🔥

 

The Waiting Game Begins…

Welp, there goes another week.

It pretty much flew by just as fast as the previous week did, and I don’t know how to feel about that. I’m loving my time in fourth-year right now and as they always say, times flies when you’re having fun. I don’t really want the rest of this year to flash before my eyes, so I’m trying my best to appreciate and live up each and every day from now until I start my residency training. However at the same time, I’m looking forward to beginning my residency training as an M.D. and to finally be someone’s physician. That’s an honor that I’ve been working towards tirelessly for a good chunk of my life now. As tough as the experience will be, I’m sure that I’ll work to appreciate each and every day of residency. Nevertheless, I’m a fourth-year now and as such, I need to be enjoying my hard-earned chill time!

hbo soothing GIF by High Maintenance

In other news, I stuck to my word and officially certified my rank list last week!

happy joy GIF

Now that I’ve certified and submitted it, there’s no turning back. Wherever I end up matching is where I’m obligated to spend the next three years of my life training to become a fantastic Pediatrician. Up until this point, I’ve been busy securing good grades, gathering letters of recommendations, completing and submitting my residency application, traveling for interviews, and sorting out my rank list. I’ve just been straight-up busy working to secure my future all throughout my fourth-year. However, from now until March 15th, 2019, there’s nothing else for me to do but simply wait to see where all this labor and prayer will take me. It’s pretty wild, to say the least. In the meantime though, I’ll be finishing up my experience in my Immigrant Health/Public Health rotation and begin rotating through my last rotation of fourth-year, my Diagnostic Radiology elective. In addition, I’ll continue to update the blog, fulfill both my responsibilities for school and my ever-growing SNMA duties, and most importantly, continue to live out my best fourth-year life!

president obama potus GIF by Obama

I continued to benefit from some dope experiences during my third week in this rotation, some of which included attending a community meeting about taking action to promote the education and well-being of young children in the community, shadowing a community-based dentist, rotating through an STD clinic, a child abuse clinic (incredibly sad and gut-wrenching) and a travel clinic (I didn’t even know travel clinics existed…apparently you can go to a special clinic to get the information and immunizations you need before you travel abroad. The job also looked verrry chill…🤔), attending an advisory board meeting where the topics of Medicaid transformation and safety net coordination in the community were discussed, and learning more about the control of communicable diseases (influenza, measles, zika, E. coli, norovirus, etc.) in the county by talking with people in the health department who worked specifically in the communicable diseases section of the department.

Like I said last week, I could go into detail about each of these interesting experiences, but then I would be here for a while writing an unnecessarily lengthy essay about each of them. Y’all know how long-winded I can get lol. This upcoming week is my last week in the rotation, which is a bummer because I’ve genuinely been having a wonderful time these past few weeks. But alas, all good things must come to an end. 😔

With that, I’ll go ahead and end this post here.

I hope that your week is a stupendous one!

“Whatever we believe about ourselves and our ability comes true for us.”- Susan L. Taylor

– Black Man, M.D.

The Impact of A Decision

I must say, this week flew by pretty fast…I legit feel like I just finished typing up last week’s post. 😅

The completion of this week marks the halfway point in my current rotation, which means that I’m a week closer to Match Day as well as to graduation! People always say that this time period in fourth-year flies by especially fast and I gotta say, they WERE NOT lying. Like, we’re already approaching the middle of February 2019! This also means that the last day to submit my rank list is rapidly approaching (next Wednesday)!

The Office No GIF by EditingAndLayout

For those of you who don’t know the significance of that, it means that by next Wednesday I need to be 100% sure of which programs I want to rank #1, #2, #3 and so on. Once I submit this list, there’s no looking back. So as you can imagine, a ton of fourth-year medical students across the nation are currently stressing out about making an important decision that will directly impact their immediate future. I’m fortunate enough to say that I’m not necessarily that stressed about submitting my rank list because I believe that I’m going to end up wherever I’m meant to be and that I’ll do all I can to make the most out of my experience at whatever program I end up training at. That being said, I’ve been doing A LOT of thinking, praying and talking with others in order to make sure that I’m making the best decisions I can for my list. I’ll probably work to get it finalized and sent in this week just so that I don’t have to worry about it next week. (I can’t even begin to imagine what would happen if I missed the deadline to submit it…😳) After submitting it, I’ll chuck up a quick prayer and move on with my life. 😊

As for my most recent week of my Immigrant Health/Public Health rotation, it was another great and informative one full of memorable experiences that I’ll be sure to carry with me as I begin my career as a medical doctor. I was afforded some more unique experiences throughout the week that I was able to appreciate, including attending a Stakeholder Advisory Committee meeting within the Wake Forest Clinical and Translational Science Institute’s Program in Community Engagement, helping treat low-income immigrants from various countries around the world, attending a Department of Health & Human Services board meeting where leaders in Forsyth County reviewed North Carolina public health law, recieved updates about various public health initiatives in the community and approved substantial budgets for public health programs in the county, experiencing first-hand how a WIC clinic functions on a day-to-day basis, observing how an ID card drive for undocumented immigrants operates in the community, and learning more about what the POSSE (Prevent Ongoing Spread of STIs Everywhere) program does in the community.

I could write in detail about each of these experiences, but then I would end up spending a lot more time typing up this post than I would like. What I will say is that as I worked with some of the low-income immigrants in the clinics I was rotating through, it was painfully obvious just how much harder it was for them to get adequate access to care. Not only did they have have a significant language barrier that they had to hurdle over, but they also had other additional barriers to care that you and I may take for granted. It was wild to hear about what a lot of them have to go through just to get by, but I’m glad that their struggles were reinforced to me. It definitely gave me some perspective that will prove useful to me in my career.

Overall, I really am glad that I decided to sign up for this rotation. The experiences that I’ve had so far and that I will continue to have these next two weeks will undoubtedbly impact how I practice medicine in my career. With all of the knowledge that I continue to acquire about the community throughout this month, I will feel much more empowered to connect my future patients to various resources that their respective communities have to offer.

That’s pretty much all I have to say for today. I have quite a busy day ahead of me now that I’ve recently (and unexpectedly) taken on the role of interim Region IV Director of the Student National Medical Association, a position that I’ll hold in conjunction with my position as one of the External Affairs National Committee Co-Chairs. While this new, temporary role just made me busier than I would have liked to be at this time in my fourth-year, I still have all intentions of living my best life on this final stretch of the school year!

Go on and make this week an outstanding one! And continue to revel in the awesomeness of Black History Month!

“If you have no confidence in self, you are twice defeated in the race of life.” – Marcus Garvey

– Black Man, M.D.