It’s been said before, and I’ll say it again. The learning curve, when you’re alone to take care of around a hundred patients, is steep. Learning by doing is even truer than ever. Making the best of it is very important.

Reflective Practice

While you walk to your next challenge, take a second to reflect on how you managed your last patient.

  • What did you do that made the encounter positive?
  • How could you improve?

More technical

  • Does a new differential diagnosis come to mind?
  • Is your plan clear enough for everyone involved? (nurses, other residents/attending doctors)

I know, I know. We’re always told to “reflect” on our performance and hearing this gets tiring after a while. What I’m suggesting is easy and quick. No writing involved.

How about everything else?

That steep learning curve applies not only to the medical aspects of patient care but also to everything else that may be involved - the “extras”.

  • You learn to manage teams.
  • You learn to communicate with colleagues and other professionals efficiently.
  • You learn to teach.

After a few months of doing calls, you’ll realize how important those “extras” really are.


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