Blog | Monday, August 27, 2018

Teaching new interns and students--stress the basics


I have had the “pleasure” of an interesting attending stretch from June 10 to July 9. The new interns started Sunday, June 24th. New third year students started the next day.

The attending job changed dramatically in one day. The June interns were ready for residency. All the conversations occurred at a very high level. We worked on some fine points of internal medicine to help them grow.

With new interns and students, it is back to basics. We must assume very little, but we do have their attention. So for the past two weeks we have stressed the basics.
1. How do we manage pancreatitis?
2. What is the differential diagnosis of pancreatitis?
3. What complications do cirrhotic patients have and how do we treat them?
4. What is the illness script for community acquired pneumonia?
5. How do we assess severity for community acquired pneumonia?
6. What treatments work for systolic dysfunction?
7. What is a COPD exacerbation?

You get the idea.

This time of the year, but actually at all times, make certain that the team knows the basics. We can always add in some spice as patients dictate. But focus on the basics. Your learners will grow faster when you do.

db is the nickname for Robert M. Centor, MD, MACP. db stands both for Dr. Bob and da boss. He is an academic general internist at the University of Alabama School of Medicine, and the former Regional Dean for the Huntsville Regional Medical Campus of UASOM. He still makes inpatient rounds regularly at the Birmingham VA and Huntsville Hospital. His current titles are Professor-Emeritus and Chair-Emeritus of the ACP Board of Regents. This post originally appeared at his blog, db's Medical Rants.