Thursday Born

The everyday life of a psychiatry resident (who was born on a Thursday).

Archive for September 2013

Off Service

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Psychiatry intern year is half psychiatry, and half “off service” rotations, usually a mix of Internal Medicine and Neurology. My program offers us the option of doing some Pediatrics rotations, either pediatric inpatient or pediatric neurology, and I decided that if I was considering doing the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry fellowship, perhaps I should have a better foundation of pediatric medicine than just what I got in medical school.

So my Intern year is a little bit more intense than most of my co-Interns. Usually you have two or three off service “ward” months, two months of neurology, and then another two or three somewhat lighter medicine related months like Medicine Consults or Emergency Medicine. And when you start Off Service instead of on psychiatry, you get a total of seven months (month = a four week block) of off service rotations instead of six. Since I opted to start Off Service, and I wanted to do some pediatrics, I (and one other intern) have two adult medicine ward months, three pediatric ward months, one adult neurology month, and one pediatric neurology month (which I’m on right now and it is a very welcome break). And in addition to having three weeks of night float for Psychiatry this year, I also have three weeks of Pediatrics night float.

I’m mostly glad I chose this, because it’s Intern year. This is essentially my last chance to explore other fields in a hands on way, so I should take advantage of all the learning opportunities I can. I’m a bit apprehensive about January/February/March though, because it will be winter, and I will have adult medicine, followed by two months of pediatrics, all months during which I can’t take vacation. It’s going to be an intense 12 weeks and you bet I’m buying a happy light because I’ll likely only be seeing the sun through my patients’ windows. I’m really excited about April, because I will be back on Psychiatry, and I’ll be on psychiatry for good.

So starting Off Service is a bit rough, because I’m finally a doctor and that’s exciting and awesome! But wait, this isn’t the kind of medicine I signed up for!

Thankfully, we have didactics from 1pm to 5pm every Thursday afternoon, and except for my medicine month at the beginning, and when I was on night float for a week, I’ve been able to make it over. It’s been a nice weekly trip to my “home base,” and it helps keep me grounded.

I feel kind of guilty for whining about having five ward months, when pediatric and medicine interns have so many more, but they also enjoy it (or so I’ve been told). I definitely don’t hate my ward months – sometimes they are actually fun, and they’re always very rewarding – but there’s something missing for me.

Written by Aba

September 22, 2013 at 8:42 am

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