An ordinary working day of a summer physician in internal medicineKeywords:
Natalie Keltto works as a substitute physician, i.e. as a Bachelor of Medicine during the summer on the inpatient ward of internal medicine at HUS’s Peijas Hospital. Her working day includes patient rounds, consultations, and paperwork – independently but with the support of a senior physician.
8:00 Morning rounds
My normal working day starts at 8 a.m. with rounds to see the patients in care that day. In the morning, I see the patients on my rounds either together with a senior physician or sometimes by myself. At the moment, I am treating about five patients a day, which is a suitable relaxed pace. No theory course teaches things in as concrete terms as meeting patients in real life – that is why it is so tremendously educational.
12:00 noon Lunch and catching up with my great colleagues in the ward office
We have several Bachelors of Medicine working as temporary physicians as well as a few assistant physicians. There are always also specializing physicians or specialists on the ward. It has been wonderful to be able to feel part of the team of physicians, even though I am not yet a fully qualified physician. The physician in training has also been well received by other professional groups, and we share a good work atmosphere here among the entire staff.
12:30 p.m. Afternoon paperwork and consultations
In order to increase confidence and professional self-esteem, it is good that I am also responsible for the required paperwork myself. I don’t know everything yet, and no one assumes I do. Instead, this summer I have realized how important it is to know how to search for information and to ask for help. Luckily, there is always someone in the next room or available by phone to help me.
Bonus: Summer training for Bachelors of Medicine
The orientation for us Bachelors of Medicine is not limited to the beginning of the employment relationship, but it has continued throughout the summer. A couple of times a month, the internal medicine staff at Peijas has held small trainings for us Bachelors of Medicine, for example, on the treatment of infections or various heart diseases.
Evenings and weekends: optional extra on-call shifts
We Bachelors of Medicine were asked if we were interested in working in extra on-call shifts alongside a primary on-call physician. I have done a few of these shifts, and it’s been really educational: I get to receive patients in the emergency department, but I do not have to be the sole professional responsible for them yet. It might be interesting to continue working on-call shifts in the fall alongside my studies!