Since Meals on Wheels, my life has been crazy busy! I spent two weeks in Europe, then immediately drove to Alabama for my RA job training. Then school started and I have been interning ever since.
I spent one month at UAB Medical West, my first experience in a hospital. It was nothing like I expected, but I had a great time. The environment was very fast paced and challenging, because there are so many completely different patients to see in a day. Speaking with patients was the easy part- it was the paperwork that took the most effort! Learning to navigate the EMR (Electronic Medical Record), understanding the hierarchy of a hospital, and knowing lab values/what they mean were my main takeaways from my time there. The dietitians there were fun to work with and awesome teachers, and because of them I fell in love with clinical.
My past two weeks have been spent with a renal dietitian, traveling between 3 dialysis clinics in the Birmingham area. It was amazing to see how valued the dietitian is in that situation, and how much freedom they’re given. She goes over lab values with the patients, changes their phosphate binder if necessary, and adjusts medication dosages (with doctor approval). I loved seeing the relationships she had with patients and coworkers, and enjoyed dialysis immensely. This week, I got to use my creativity and create a phosphorus bulletin board in the patient waiting room!
The best thing about being an intern is meeting so many dietitians. Preceptors, professors, their coworkers, and guest speakers all give me a little more insight into figuring out where I’ll go with this degree.