Did you see the medical students with their green name plates on their white coats and expectant but uncertain gazes, swarming around the various departments January 13th and 14th?
THANK YOU for taking such good care of them! I have had the pleasure of reading their reports, which confirm that they were well taken care of by the entire chain of healthcare professionals that they met: the porter who showed them the right way through the tunnel, the biomedical laboratory scientist who patiently explained that this particular instrument measured hemoglobin, the nurse who looked after the student who nearly fainted in the examination room and all the doctors who explained why they said and did everything during an entire workday.
Getting this first insight into a day at a hospital, observing lots of good interaction and seeing that we all have our place in the diagnostic and treatment chain have given them an important insight into the life of a doctor. Observation of the doctor-patient meetings without the requirement of direct academic learning provides an opportunity for good role models; this is building professionalism!
Getting their noses out of the books and into the staff and patient rooms has aroused motivation; they see that also basic knowledge is necessary to understand complex medical conditions.
The fact that the same students will be back at your department, brings confidence for both them and us. It also provides an opportunity for the individual student’s local supervisor to follow her / him over time. In that situation it will also be easier to see if a student struggles, either with acquiring academic knowledge or with personal problems.
The students describe a wide range of pleasant workplaces that take good care of the workers, which is primarily a benefit for us who work there every day. Let us continue to be attentive to each other also when we are not showing our “best side” with a student in tow.