Prep-Step Health Care Scholar:
Rotation 1 - Nephrology 11E
The Clinical Care Extender/PrepStep-Health Care Scholar program gives pre-health professionals unprecedented access to direct patient care. Program participants become valuable members of the patient-care team alongside nurses, physicians and allied health professionals in clinical and administrative settings. Program participants receive training to assist in basic patient-care tasks such as bathing, changing and feeding patients as they rotate among the different departments within the hospital. For instance, participants may have the opportunity to serve in areas such as the emergency department, observe surgeries performed in the operating rooms, witness babies being born in labor & delivery or participate in hospital projects.
This is probably the greatest opportunity a Premed student could ask for. The Prep-Step Health Care Scholar Program, through Swedish Medical Center, allows us to work on the floor side by side with nurses. We get to physically interact and engage with patients, an opportunity that is not provided unless you're licensed to some degree. While our scope of practice is limited, the amount we can observe and learn is unlimited provided that we make the most of it. Even though I can't participate in the practical aspects of what physicians are required to perform, by being a patient advocate and intermediary between patients and their providers, I get to develop my bedside manner and the characteristics that make a good physician a great physician.
For my first rotation, I worked on 11E, the Nephrology Unit. Below I've included some of my experiences. These aren't fleshed out or well-edited pieces of writing, they're literally just me dumping my thoughts onto a page. But I think there's something special in the raw impressions I gained, unhampered by any hindsight bias.