I absolutely loved my family medicine rotation. I'm not sure that I will become a family physician someday, but the rotation was a great way to practice my history taking, physical exam skills, and critical thinking to form a treatment plan. I also had some great opportunities for hands on experience and loved helping remove skin lesions and injecting knees! Some of the most beneficial pieces of knowledge I learned on this rotation were understanding the job of rural care providers, the challenges they face daily, and the huge amounts of information about a patient's healthcare that they are responsible for.
I learned a lot about the psychosocial aspects of medicine It's not always as easy as telling the patient the best drug and treatment option, because each patient has different beliefs, financial situations, and experience with illnesses and the patient and physician have to work out the best plan of action. This was something I didn't think much so far in medical school.
I also had an awesome opportunity to work with a physician that is extremely loved by his patients. In almost every room each patient would tell me how much they love their doctor. I was able to learn what traits and actions he did so well to build such great relationships with patients.
In clinic we saw everything from the sick and dying to newborns. We even took care of four generations in one family! Since I was there for two months I saw some of the same patients over and over and it was nice to build relationships with them.
I was sad to leave this rotation because I finally felt like I was getting the hang of how the clinic operated, and the patients were starting to know who I was. But as with each rotation in medical school, as soon as you get comfortable it's time to step outside the comfort zone again!
My days varied and each day had it's own highs and lows and unique challenges. That's one of the awesome things about family medicine. Here's what my typical schedule looked like.
Wake up and study because I hated studying after work
Pack my bags, and leave for my hour commute to clinic
Begin seeing patients
Study, relax, eat, and watch tv