Wayfaring MD

I am a family medicine resident who likes to highlight the hilarious in medicine as I write about patients, medical school, residency, medical missions, and whatever else strikes my fancy.



Disclaimer:
HIPAA is for reals, folks. All of my "patient stories" have been changed to protect patient privacy. I will change any or all identifiers, including age, location, race/ethnicity, sex, medical history, and quotes. Also, I am an anonymous internet person. Why should you trust an anonymous internet person to give you medical advice? Don't ask me, ask your doctor!
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Posts tagged "fourth year"

What happens during m4? People talk a lot about the two lecture years, and then about the hellish nature of m3, but no one ever talks about m4 except to say that it’s easy. So I’m wondering what actually goes on during m4? -kyidyl

Well kyidyl, the reason no one ever talks about m4 is because that’s one of the rules of m4. 

Nah I jus playin. I jus playin.

Fourth year is the most glorious year ever. 

Many schools will require a few rotations, but in general they have cush hours and no overnight call. For example, my school required an ICU rotation, ER, and Geriatrics. The rest of the year is elective time, so students take whatever they want. The great thing about required rotations is that attendings generally remember their awesome 4th year and go easy on their students. 

Fourth year is awesome because most elective rotations are 9-5 (if that) with no weekends, plus you often get more vacation time than the other 3 years combined. It’s a huge relief after the constant on-the-go of third year. And it gives you a much needed break and rest before residency. 

Fourth year’s only stress is applying to residency and going to interviews. But let’s be real here. Interview swag and cross country travel can be pretty awesome too. And let’s not forget the amazeballs day that is Match Day. 

Oh yeah, and graduation was pretty cool too. 

Hey fourth years, how great has fourth year been for you? Amazing right? I told you it would be. Like all good things, fourth year must come to an end, and the beginning of that end is, of course, RANK LISTS. Rank lists are due February 20 (and if you didn’t already know this, you need to step up your game yo), and I’m sure you guys are all freaking out about them a little bit. 

A close friend of mine e-mailed me recently about her rank list decision making, and she said, 

I have been expecting to have a “big moment” of sorts where the lights come down from heaven and God says “this is where you are supposed to go.”

We all hope for that feeling. That moment when it’s all clear.

So far, that hasn’t happened for her, and I imagine it hasn’t happened for many of you. I had my own little rank list crisis last year (btw, I matched my first ranked program, but I won’t tell which of those two it was), so I totally understand the frustration and the worries and fears associated with making this list that will determine the course of your next 3-7 years. 

So here’s a little advice to consider in your decision making:

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1. Work like crazy until interviews are over. Then chill like you have never chilled before.

2. Store up that vacation time for the end of the year if you can. Moving takes 3 times as much time and effort as you think it will.

3. Do an away rotation (or three!). Even if it’s not at your top program, it will teach you a lot about other hospital systems and will help you figure out what you like and don’t like in a program.

4. Pick one piece of clothing in your interview outfit that will make you memorable. It can be bling, but tasteful, of course. Maybe shoes with a little pizzazz. For me, it was a scarf. Guys, go with a brightly colored tie (again, mad points for the bowtie) or pocket square if you’re classy like that.

5. Be nice to the hotel staff and support staff at residency programs you’re applying to. If you’re rude, it may come back to bite you. People check up on that sort of thing.

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Being a doctor is cool. I’m still in my PJs.

noontime text from the best good friend

My grandma on graduation day: Hey, look at my foot. Look how swollen it is. 

Me: I see! It’s been a week! I told you you should have a doctor look at it. 

Grandma: Oh ok. Hey doctor, come look at my foot. 

the hugebig award I mentioned earlier was the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award. My mom boo-hooed when I was called up to the stage by myself at graduation to accept the award. 

Also, you can now call me doctor ;). 

and I got this hugebig award and I’m keeping it a secret from my family so they’ll be surprised when it’s announced at graduation tomorrow. More on the awards later. Squee!

Also, if you didn’t catch it in the last paragraph, GRADUATION. IS. TOMORROW. Like I’m gonna be a doctor. For reals. I have lost all ability to can. 

Recently my school made all of us 4th years sit through a Financial Aid Exit Workshop. Basically, we sit and listen to how we’re going to be giving the gov’ment money for the rest of our lives. It’s great fun. 

Let’s talk stats, shall we? The average American Medical School Graduate is about $160,000 in debt when they graduate. At my school, the average is approximately $220,000. 

As you can see, my debt is significantly more than that. I have no spouse to help me pay this debt. I’m going into the lowest paid specialty in medicine. And I plan on being a missionary (or at the very least working in an underserved area, where I will probably not be making much money). The chances of me being able to pay this off are not looking good. 

So we had these financial smarty pants people come talk to us about how to pay off our debt. I took a lot of notes, but mostly I’m just overwhelmed. I gotta find me a financial planner to help me figure this stuff out. I really just want a hospital to pay my bills, but I don’t want to commit to something I can’t follow through with, either. My plan for now is to do the 10 year income-based loan repayment plan with possible loan forgiveness if I work for a non-profit during that time (yay government!).
I’m also accepting applications for sugar daddies. 

Recently my school made all of us 4th years sit through a Financial Aid Exit Workshop. Basically, we sit and listen to how we’re going to be giving the gov’ment money for the rest of our lives. It’s great fun. 

Let’s talk stats, shall we? The average American Medical School Graduate is about $160,000 in debt when they graduate. At my school, the average is approximately $220,000

As you can see, my debt is significantly more than that. I have no spouse to help me pay this debt. I’m going into the lowest paid specialty in medicine. And I plan on being a missionary (or at the very least working in an underserved area, where I will probably not be making much money). The chances of me being able to pay this off are not looking good. 

So we had these financial smarty pants people come talk to us about how to pay off our debt. I took a lot of notes, but mostly I’m just overwhelmed. I gotta find me a financial planner to help me figure this stuff out. I really just want a hospital to pay my bills, but I don’t want to commit to something I can’t follow through with, either. My plan for now is to do the 10 year income-based loan repayment plan with possible loan forgiveness if I work for a non-profit during that time (yay government!).

I’m also accepting applications for sugar daddies. 

EDIT: And it’s the jam. It was my #1 pick and I’m super excited, can you tell?

that my professor wants to turn it into a research project…

He was all, “Would you like to survey the faculty on blah blah blah..”

And I was all

If only I weren’t graduating in 31 days…

eleven pages y’all. 

I was all up in the coffee shop like

 

I’m off to hunt houses!

Probably gonna find the best one, so…

Hey med students, I’m interested to hear if your schools have any fun traditions on Match Day. My school does  a golf tournament the day before. Oh, and on Match Day we all put $5 in a bucket when we go up on stage to get our letters, and the last person who gets called gets the money. I was 4th from last. Just barely missed getting the dough. 

So what does your school do?

Asker suonlee Asks:
Hello! I've been hearing so much about Match Day with all the US med blogs, and I was wondering if you could tell me more about it. I'm an Australian med student and we don't really have an equivalent (we graduate, do a year of internship, and go into a pretty broad hospital residency program before choosing a specialty), so I was pretty curious about how Match Day worked. (and congrats on yours too!) Cheers :)
wayfaringmd wayfaringmd Said:

I figured I’d answer both of these in one post. 

So here’s how the match works: 

1. Med students apply to residency programs of their choice (any specialty). Many people apply to the programs at the hospitals where they did their 3rd and 4th year training, but most people apply across several states. I applied to programs in 6 states and didn’t apply to the program affiliated with my school. 

2. You get invited to interview at places you applied to (hopefully)

3. You interview

4. You rank all the programs you interviewed at that you liked (never rank a program you wouldn’t be happy going to!)

5. Residency programs rank all their interviewees

6. Everyone submits their rank lists in February

7. A computer program matches up students and residency programs, giving preference to the student’s choice. That means that if I ranked a program #1 and another person ranked them #5, but the program ranked that person higher than they ranked me, I still have a good shot of going to that program. This way you don’t end up at your #10 program just because they ranked you high. 

7. On the Monday before Match, students and programs get notified about whether they matched (or if a program filled all their spots), but not where they matched. If you don’t match, you go into the Scramble, now called the SOAP, which I explained in an earlier post.

8. On Friday, you get a letter from the NRMP saying where you matched. Schools do the ceremony differently. At my school, we all walk on stage and get our envelopes and then go back to the audience and open them with our families. Then at the end they announce what everyone got. We have people going to every corner of the country (NY, LA, Denver, Rhode Island, Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, SC, GA, Chicago, etc).

HAPPY MATCH DAY! Thinking of you today! "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
wayfaringmd wayfaringmd Said:

I MATCHED MY #1 RANKED SPOT!!!