Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First Shift

I had my first shift yesterday.  Our house is only a short 10-minute walk from the hospital--what a nice commute!  I met up with the director at 8am and met the registrars and students that were on for the day.  After an orientation to the department and computer system, I started seeing patients and supervising the registrars.

Interns and junior registrars are expected to go over patients more thouroughly with the consultant (me) than more senior registrars.  The senior registrars often see patients and figure out what to do with them on their own.  This is different than the States where every patient has to be seen and examined by the attending.  There are more registrars than I had in Chicago, so I don't need to see as many patients on my own.

Thankfully, the medicine is the same in Tasmania as it is in the States.  (We're all the same species!)  Most of the challenges will be process issues (How do I get this done?).  Another challenge is different names and availability of medications.  For example, acetaminophen (Tylenol) is not available.  Instead, a related drug call paracetamol is used.

Overall, a pretty good day.  I'll be working eight 10-hour shifts per fortnight, so it shouldn't take to long to get up to speed.

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