My Elective Rotation at a Poison Control Center

My Elective Rotation at a Poison Control Center

I just finished a two week elective at a poison control center and it was such a unique experience. I learned SO much – and not just medical management of common poisonings, but also some public health knowledge and that poison control is a fantastic (and underutilized) resource for medical professionals! I’m not sure how common this is as a rotation, but if your school offers it, I would recommend it. I’m lucky that one of the three poison control centers (PCC) in Florida is located on my medical school campus.

There are 55 PCC’s spread around the United States and they pick up the phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to give FREE advice and management direction. And they all use a single national hotline number – 1 (800) 222-1222. The only thing to note is that currently, it will direct you to the PCC that is geographically closely to the area code you are calling from, so if you live in one state but have a cell phone area code from another state, this might be the one time to use a landline!

Before I started this rotation, I had two ideas in mind for when someone would call poison control – when their child drank bleach or if they got bit by a snake.

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Is a Post Bacc Program Right for You?

Is a Post Bacc Program Right for You?

So you’ve decided to go to medical school but you don’t have all the required classes or the grades. Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Every year, the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) distributes a survey to matriculating first year medical students and ask about everything from demographics to premedical experiences. Here are some interesting findings from the 2020 survey as it relates to students who do not enter medical school directly from undergrad:

  • 16.2% of first year students were over the age of 26
  • 7.9% reported deciding to study medicine after completion of a bachelor’s degree and 1.7% after an advanced degree
  • 7.4% of students participated in a non-degree post bacc program to strengthen academic skills
  • 7.7% of students participated in a non-degree post bacc program to complete the premedical required courses
  • 8.3% were five or more years out from undergrad

I check 4 of those 5 boxes: I started medical school at 29, decided to pursue medical school while I was completing my Master of Public Health, went to a post bacc program to complete my pre-reqs, and graduated from undergrad 7 years before my first year of medical school.

If you’re ready to start “the journey” to medical school, the next step is figuring out how to complete all of the requirements or boost that science GPA. There are different types of post bacc programs and each fulfill a different need for applicants. The AAMC actually has a database of all the programs that you can sort and filter for various needs. In this post, I’ll go into detail on three of the most common routes to medical school after college: career changer programs, academic record enhancer programs, and a DIY option. Keep reading for some good questions to ask post bacc programs to figure out which one(s) are right for you!

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I’m Still Here: Life + Photo Dump

I’m Still Here: Life + Photo Dump

Well, it’s been much longer than I anticipated since my last post! I’m still here, just decided to take some time off to enjoy my summer and then once school started again I felt like I’ve barely had a moment to breathe. And truth be told, I should be thinking about starting to study right now but here I am, about to give you a huge life update instead – and tons of pictures that will probably convince you to take a trip out West. Keep reading to see what I’ve been up to since May!

I still cannot believe that my first year of medical school is over already! It really is true what they say – the days are long but the years are short. And that’s true thus far into second year as well. Once I finished up with my last neurology exam in May, I had to do my clinical competency assessment to ensure that I’ve learned how to take a full history and physical this year. It was a lot – you never realize how much doctors think about until you’re the one trying to think like a doctor!

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Why is Saying “No” So Hard?

Why is Saying “No” So Hard?

Hello hello! Wow, it’s been just a bit since I posted. I hope you all had a lovely Mother’s Day! I had the most relaxing weekend at home my mama and minimal studying. I read an entire book cover to cover for the first time in months and it was glorious. I love Alyssa Mastramonaco and the little glimpses she gives of behind the scenes life in the Obama White House! My mom and I did a little shopping, tried out a new restaurant in our downtown area, watched Wine Country on Netflix (it was meh – some bits were really funny but I wanted more), and had brunch with a family friend. All in all, a pretty perfect weekend and another reminder of why I love living so close to home again!

I took my neuro midterm last Monday and I’m actually caught up on lectures from last week somehow. Honestly, there’s not too much to report aside from the realization that I’m way overextended in my extracurricular involvements, which lets be honest, is par for the course for me. I thought I’d take you through why it’s so hard for me to say “no” and what I’m trying to do about it now!

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Deciding Where to Apply to Medical School

Deciding Where to Apply to Medical School

We’re at the beginning of another medical school application cycle so today’s post is all about deciding where to apply! It’s a personal, stressful, and expensive process but I hope my thoughts can help guide you if you’re struggling to start or just don’t know how to narrow down your list! And a quick caveat to start — everyone has their own priorities when deciding where to apply to school. These were mine and it’s ok if yours are different.

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Post Bacc Basics + How it Prepared Me for Medical School

Post Bacc Basics + How it Prepared Me for Medical School

I need to thank the Clare at Fitting It All In for blogging about her experiences in a post bacc premed program. When I learned that this type of program existed for people like me — career-changers who wanted to go to medical school (or other biomedical or health sciences careers) with no science background — I got onto Google and typed in “post bacc premed blog.” Her site was one of the first to come up! Now I’m in medical school after five years in the professional and graduate school worlds, a year in a post bacc, and a glorious year spent as a nanny for the cutest two year old. So, I think it’s time to pay it forward.

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On a Scale of Pass to Fail, Many Medical Schools Fail Students on Health Policy

On a Scale of Pass to Fail, Many Medical Schools Fail Students on Health Policy

We are in a time when physicians are increasingly speaking the language of health policy and public health — “value-based care,” “co-payment,” “social determinants of health,” “accountable care organization” — and are increasingly asked by patients to ensure that a particular treatment or procedure is covered by their insurance before moving forward. This dizzying list of health policy terms (and the responsibility of a physician to understand the lingo) just keeps growing. And there is no better time to introduce students to this world than in medical school, when they are primed for learning and not yet overwhelmed with patient care.

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