Clinic rotations get us ready for outpatient care

Dr. Marriott and a student intern with a patient in the AHC

Dr. Marriott and a student intern with a patient in the AHC

We have several rotations we have to complete before we are able to clear for the AHC (Academic Health Center clinic) and start working with outpatients. Those are radiology, rehab, outreach and front desk. We also have to observe several adjustments under the staff doctor we to which we are assigned. We do the rotations so we can get a feel for all of the departments we will be going into. Last week I did my radiology, outreach, front desk and clinic II rotations. The only one I have left to do is my rehab rotation.

First I had my radiology rotation. We went down into the AHC radiology department, got a tour and got to see how the machines worked. They are a bit different from the CHC (the student clinic, the Campus Health Center) X-ray machines so we got to move them around a bit and just see how they work. I am glad we did too, because today I had to take impromptu X-rays down there, and I am glad I knew how to work the machines.

We then got to look over some films and go over some cool or unusual cases that had come up through the clinic system, which was good practice. We finished up the last part by sitting in on Dr. McLean’s X-ray reading for local field doctors. This part was really awesome. It was great practice and exposure to reading X-rays, and Dr. McLean was really helpful in answering our questions and helping us just read the images better.

After radiology rotation, I sat in on the front dest rotation. This is just getting some extra exposure to what the ladies at the front desk do all day. Let me tell you, it’s a lot more than scheduling. They are all in charge of bigger projects that need to be done each day and sorting through paperwork and billing, on top of the demands of the interns to get patients scheduled and to check out equipment. Don’t take these ladies for granted! And be patient with them. They are wonderful and do a lot for you.

The last rotation I went to was in the outreach clinic in Davenport. It’s located on 6th and Harrison and is available for patient care for people who can’t afford care. From what I understand there are guidelines to qualify for care at this facility, but it’s a great asset to the community and it allows the students to help out in another clinic setting. It was a little slow while I was there but picked up and got pretty busy at the end of my shift.

I really enjoyed all of the rotations and observations I did and thought they were a great learning tool. I was really glad we had to do them before we get over into the outpatient clinic. I felt like it better prepared us for what we have to do and gave us a better idea of what our options were for the coming year.

-Allisha

Mock clinic for Clinic Abroad

An example of one of Palmer's Clinic Abroad clinic in India

An example of one of Palmer’s Clinic Abroad clinic in India

We had our first mock clinic for Clinic Abroad. We met in the gym and went over a few rules and just discussed how a regular clinic day would go while we were in Bequia or India. Then we took our equipment up to the second level of the gym to set up our clinic the same way we would be setting up the clinics each day in the areas we were visiting.

We were given limited space, so we knew how it would feel while we were actually there. The clinic we are going to be working in, in Bequia, is actually going to be smaller than where we were in the Palmer gym. So we all will be working very closely.

This was our first exposure to the actual paperwork we will be using in the clinics. It is quite a bit different from what we use in our campus clinics, since there are different requirements that need to be met abroad, as we are not seeing patients that get regular care.

Bequia Clinic Abroad

A Palmer student intern adjusting a patient at an orphanage during a recent Clinic Abroad trip to Bequia (Photo by Taryn Foster)

We ran through the full exam exactly how we are supposed to with our patients to get some exposure, so we don’t get there and have no idea what we are doing. I think it just got everyone really excited.

We got to work through some actual patient cases so we knew what kind of patient care we would be providing and what some of the past cases had been. It was something fun and enjoyable to come back to after the Thanksgiving break. I am really looking forward to going.

-Allisha

Spizz Night and more

Chiropractic meme

What’s “Spizz”? It’s excitement about chiropractic!

We recently had Spizz Night. I was only able to stay for the vendor fair and the dinner before my friends and I left for a girls’ weekend in Wisconsin. Spizz Night went really well, from what I saw. There were a lot of people there. We got into the food line early, but when we were leaving, the food line went all the way to the other side of the building, which I have never seen before.

From what I heard, there were a couple phenomenal speakers there, too. I had a friend say it was one of the best Spizz Nights she had been to. The tacos were delicious, like always. There were several clubs there again. They were also doing a coat drive; if you brought a gently-used coat, you could get put in a drawing for a portable adjusting table, which is pretty cool.

I was there working at the Sigma Phi Chi information booth. We had a lot of people come by. There were several visiting potential students there, too. There must have been a campus visit going on that weekend (there was the next day). From what I heard from the visiting students, they seemed to be having a good time.

My friends and I left at about 5:30 p.m. to head to Wisconsin to do some shopping and just hangout with my friend’s family. It was a nice break before our OSCE exams. I have my radiology part next week and the clinical part the first week of December. So I have to start studying for that really soon!

Clinic Abroad is getting closer!

Getting ready to fly

Getting ready to fly

We had our first Clinic Abroad meeting of the trimester. We got information on where we’re going financial aid information and our itinerary. In total, to get to Bequia and back, we will be taking nine different flights and possibly a boat ride! A lot of people are a litttle uneasy about it. I’m excited. I love everything about traveling, even the airports.

We got to see pictures of the places we will be adjusting … and the place in which we’ll spend the most time overlooks the ocean! We will also be visiting a lot of schools during the day and taking care of a lot of preschool children. I am excited and nervous at the same time. We haven’t gotten a lot of hands-on experience with small children, so it will be a complete learning experience.

Whales

Whales

We get a couple free days to go and do as we please, and one day we’re going to go on a boat cruise! Bequia is also one of the last countries where whaling is legal, and we will be there during whaling season. I’m still trying to figure out how I feel about this. I thoroughly enjoy whales, but this is part of their culture and they aren’t doing it for sport. We were told the island is full of whale bones and there are even restaraunts that have them on display. That I’m looking forward to quite a bit because, even though the fate of the whale was unfortunate, who wouldn’t want to see whale bones? I can’t believe we leave in 3 months! It came up so quickly. I really just can’t wait to be adjusting all day and changing some lives!

Finals and break

(written during finals week) Ah, finals are finally upon us. Which means two things: Goody bag Friday and endless studying. Goody bag Friday was a success. Although I showed up kind of late because I had a later final, and I didn’t get a yellow Laffy Taffy or Snickers like I had hoped. The pink Laffy Taffy and Milky Way did just as fine, though.

Unfortunately, the endless studying hasn’t been going as well. I seem to be very easily distracted this trimester when it comes to studying. Like right now I should probably be studying, but writing this seemed more appealing.

We are over halfway through finals, and I have two more to go before the break starts. Both finals are for my Technique classes. The last one is tomorrow at 8:55 a.m. Then I have to see a patient in the rehab department, and then I am free to relax and not think about school for the next ten days. Then boards scores come in, and I will either be celebrating a lot or crying a lot. Either way the break should be a great one. I’m going to Des Moines to shadow a doctor in the area, and I’m going to think about doing some things for my wedding. We will see, though. I might just do a lot of sleeping.

Halloween is at the beginning of the tri like usual, but this time it’s on a Friday which means costumes. I am going to finish up my costume over break, and my friend and I are going to pass out candy to the neighborhood children and find costume contests to enter! Halloween is my favorite holiday, so I’m happy I finally get to partake in the festivities!

For now I must get back to studying! Happy finals week!

-Allisha

Flip! I’m going to be in clinic more than classrooms

We went on a clinic tour of the Academic Health Center (better known as the AHC) with our new staff doctors. This gave us an opportunity to meet our staff doctor and ask them a few questions. It’s a little weird already going into Level One clinic. Most days I forget I’m not in first trimester anymore. It’s weird saying I’m going into eight tri when people ask.

The great news is my schedule for next trimester is beautiful. Most days I’m done by noon except on Tuesdays and Thursdays when I have class until 2:45, which is still way better than 3:40 like the last seven trimesters! On Mondays, I only have one class and it’s a lab! It’s going to be sooo nice not having to be in class all day then go to clinic for four hours after eight hours of sitting in a classroom. This is the trimester where it flips. We’re in clinic more than we’re in class, which is definitely preferred.

So anyway we got a tour of the outpatient clinic and saw where we were going to be spending most of our time. It was really helpful, even though I’m sure when it comes time, I’m still going to have no idea where to find anything. So if you see me running around frantically, I’m probably lost. I usually am.

It was really cool getting a glimpse of what is to come. There is a lot to be excited about within the next year!

-Allisha

I’m going on Clinic Abroad!

We had our first meeting for Clinic Abroad last week. This was just a welcome meeting that gave us the basic information of our trip and generally what we needed to know before we leave. I got accepted to go to Bequia in February! We got to see who else was going to be going on the trips with us and sign up for roommates.

Bequia is a small island in the Grenadines, where we will be providing care to a lot of school-aged children. I can’t wait for this opportunity. I remember first hearing about Clinic Abroad and saying to myself, “No matter what, I’m doing that!” It’s a little unreal that it’s actually happening. Only one more trimester before we leave. I should probably start thinking about what to pack!

I’m just kidding. It’s a little early for that, but I did put a countdown on my phone until we go! 128 days 37 minutes and 9 seconds from right now.

I think what I’m most excited about is to see the excitement from the people of Bequia about chiropractic. Here in the States there is still negativity towards our profession, and it seems like on any given day you can get into an argument with someone on the topic. On Clinic Abroad they’re so accepting and excited that you’re there to help them and they embrace it fully. Or so I’m told. I can’t wait to be able to give them the care they have been waiting for. I know it’s going to be life-changing.

-Allisha

The trimester winds down

We are getting down to the last few weeks of the trimester. Things are winding down and getting wrapped up within the next three weeks. We are getting all our final practicals, quizzes and tests out of the way before finals approach. Gladly, it actually hasn’t been very busy and won’t be for my trimester until finals. We only have a few things a week, which is a nice change. I’ve been seeing one or two patients a day in the clinic, which has been a lot of fun. I get to do my first physical/re-evaluation on one of my patients at the end of this week. It’s just been kind of a steady month this month. Boards studying and exams took up most of the month, and it’s kind of been smooth sailing since.

Alligator

Gator!

Last weekend I went to Ames/Des Moines (Iowa) to visit my cousin and go bridesmaid dress shopping. We had a lot of fun just hanging out. It was a nice break from the craziness of school. On Saturday night we went to the World Food and Music festival in downtown Des Moines. I tried a gyro, tacos, crab ragoons and a couple different dishes from Ecuador. It was all very delicious and a lot of fun. There were food vendors for all sorts of countries. I just wasn’t brave enough to try the crazy things! They also had salsa dance lessons and various bands playing throughout the night. It was a really cool festival, and there were a lot of people there trying a lot of different things. My cousin tried to get alligator bites, but luckily they were out when went to buy them because she was going to make me try them!

Now it’s just trying to stay focused and not check out too early before finals. There is still quite a bit to do!

-Allisha

Boards are over!

Boards are finally over. Things are officially starting to slow down for this trimester, and I am finally able to get back to a normal routine.

We took National Boards test last weekend. It was, as Boards normally are, exhausting. I tested Friday through Sunday, and we got a rest day on Monday (no classes). So this week was a short week, but I came back to two patients a day, two tests and a couple practicals and quizzes, so it was still pretty busy.

Yesterday was Founder’s Day! Happy 119 years to chiropractic! The school had a little celebration today. I was not able to attend on account of having to cram for my test today.

Within the last two weeks not much has really been happening besides a lot of studying and preparation. Now that that is over, I’m trying to get back into the swing of things and trying to remember how to study for regular exams!

I was able to make it back to hot yoga this week, but I still haven’t gotten caught up on sleep! This weekend I am headed to Ames/Des Moines to go bridesmaid dress shopping with my cousin. I think we are also going to go to a world food and music festival, so that should be a nice treat!

-Allisha

Ain’t that a kick in the head!

Pow! Right to the face!

Pow! Right to the face!

This has been my second official week in the student clinic. It has been very, very busy. I can’t tell you much about seeing patients, but I will say it has been a really nice change. It’s really cool to finally be putting it all together and working in the clinic. It’s crazy to think I’m already here. I’ve said this many times, but it seem like just last week I was starting first trimester.

So I have to tell a small story about my first patient experience. She told me I have to write about it in this blog or she would be really upset. I won’t give out much information because of the very important HIPPA laws, but I can tell you sort of what happened.

So everything was going smoothly. Her previous intern was in there to show me the ropes and give me some pointers, which was very nice. After I had done my work-up and was getting ready to get the table set-up how I wanted for maximum mechanical advantage. Basically, at this point, I was lowering the leg raiser bar. I bent down slightly to grab it, and she must have realized what I was doing … and in an effort to help me out, she lifted her legs and kicked me right in my face!

She said, “Was that your face?” I calmly responded, “Yup, that was my face,” and we laughed for a least 10 minutes about it. It has now become an ongoing joke every time I see her. It was incredibly funny and a great story to tell for my  first patient encounter. Luckily, she didn’t kick me too hard. It didn’t hurt, and I was left unscathed, but just a heads-up if you’re going to move a leg raiser bar, stay out of the kick zone.

Fortunately, I haven’t been kicked again. I’d say I learned from that mistake. Regardless, it has been a lot of fun, and I’m excited to be seeing patients everyday.

-Allisha