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Monday, May 20, 2013

Being a Positive Influence

Dietetic Internship adventures at the Memphis VAMC continue!(Previous week's blog posts can be found to the left under the navigation by date headings.)

DIETETIC INTERNSHIP: Weeks 8 & 9  (of 41)
Weeks 8 & 9 - General Medicine

In this rotation I experienced my very first inpatient setting…  the General Medicine wards.  I had become so used to Outpatient that I wasn't exactly sure how/what went on in the hospital.  On Day 2 I was quickly caught up to speed as I saw an obtrusive red sign on the patient’s door, nearly shouting at me, “Caution! Caution”  Not knowing what to do, I called my preceptor (which is like a mentor and boss during a rotation), “Umm, help?!”  

She graciously informed me that this patient was under isolation and droplet precautions, and I needed to re-outfit myself.  She helped me get suited up in a head-to-toe yellow gown, face mask, and gloves… then I entered the room.  What kind of encounter was I headed to?  Aliens?  Nope, a patient with the flu and other complications such as COPD and hacking every 2 minutes.  “Contact Precautions”  I don’t want your flu or anything else!  I suited up many, many more times over the course of the day, and the following two weeks.  (It is really hot under a face mask!)