I thought that, starting this week, I would share a bit about
the therapies and skills required of each Intern before
This week, since we here at NUHS are historically a chiropractic
school, I will start with the obvious requirements of physical
therapies and manual manipulation (or adjustments) skills.
Physical therapies are any therapy for the body including soft
tissue (muscle, tendon, fascial) therapies, ultrasound, cold laser,
phonophoresis, or massage. These therapies can range from treating
ganglion cysts, scars, sprains, strains, swelling or tissue
Manual manipulations (adjusting the skeletal structure) include
manual adjustments of the spine and extremities (arms and legs). We
are taught a tremendous amount of physical medicine while here at
NUHS and the training came in handy as one of my first patients as
a ND intern required both physical medicine and manual
I have been fortunate to complete all of my physical medicine
and manual manipulation requirements after only fours weeks into
9th trimester. The opportunity to get this much practice with
physical medicine prepares me thoroughly for understanding the
proper feel of a patient's musculoskeletal structure, based upon
their age, activity level and level of injury. I feel that this
will give me a competitive advantage versus other NDs in the
marketplace, based upon the scope of practice in the state where I
I have shared another pic of the swan and duck families who have
grown and thrived on Lake Janse this past summer. Soon, the ducks
will migrate south and the swans will return to their winter
lodgings to rest and get ready for another year of scaring away the
flocks of geese that attempt to invade our little campus on their
Next week, I'll share more about the skills that naturopathic
interns need to master prior to graduation. Until then, enjoy the
newly birthed autumn season
Time to settle into the weekly routine again, albeit things are
a bit different this trimester. With class and clinic rotations 5
days each week, along with work on the side during some mornings
and each weekend, time is a precious commodity.
This is what a typical clinic schedule looks like for a 9th/10th
trimester ND Intern.
During clinic, we sit down for "preview" each day to discuss
upcoming patient cases and strategies for best helping our patients
in a roundtable discussion. This is a "safe zone" to bounce ideas,
debate the best strategy amongst peers and under the guidance of
our clinicians. The idea is to share knowledge through discussion
in a practical manner without judgment. This approach allows us to
discuss all treatment modalities, their benefits, drawbacks and
limitations, then move forward with the best overall treatment for
After preview, we see our patients, chart, research, develop and
bring our suggested treatment plans to our clinicians, who vet the
plans and approve or amend as required for the benefit of our
patients. We must complete all of these tasks during our shifts as
HIPPA regulations dictate that no patient records leave the
premises. We learn quickly to be accurate, concise and have all
work completed by the end of the day out of necessity.
Even though this seems like a lot of work, clinic is a fun,
nurturing environment that I look forward to every day. The smiles
on patients' faces when they begin to feel better, heal and share
is priceless! The patience, knowledge, skill and care that our
clinicians share with each intern on a daily basis set an excellent
example for all of us as future doctors.
Me with Carrie (left) and Juanita (right), both 6th trimester
The photo I'm sharing this week is of two friends and me. I was
printing something at the library the other day and ran into them
after having not seen either for about two months! This made me
realize that I was separated from the rest of campus now that I'm
in clinic and needed to visit my old friends still in their
clinical courses. Challenge accepted...
Hello to everyone! I hope you enjoyed your summer and are ready
for what appears to be a great fall season!
I was able to relax a bit, recharge, hike some trails back home,
and be the first person at the top of Mt. Mitchell (highest point
east of the Mississippi at 6,683 feet) for sunrise one morning
during a hike. The view was incredibly beautiful and being able to
sit, think about the past few years of school, the challenges,
rewards and decisions to come while watching the sun rise over the
southern Appalachians was one of the more peaceful moments of the
past few years of my life.
At the same time during the break, I caught up on some personal
reading that I had put off for over two years as well as some
reorganizing, consolidating and reducing for the inevitable move in
about 8 months.
Now, for the homestretch in clinic!
Here is how the Naturopathic Clinic is currently structured:
Previously, 8th Trimester interns could only see other students,
not the general public. This left many students with seeing a new
intern every four months as ONLY 8th trimester students could see
other students. So, when an Intern moved to 9th trimester, they
would transition the student patient to a rising 8th trimester
Now, students and the general public have the opportunity to see
interns beginning in 8th trimester, and, if the condition warrants,
remain with that intern for up to a full year. This helps to build
rapport and trust with the patient as well as helps the Intern with
seeing a resolution to more ailments than was previously
Finally, the most appealing aspect to this new structure, in my
opinion, is that now our naturopathic medicine students are
spending half of their education in a clinical setting! Again, in
my opinion, nothing trumps experience and "hands on" training when
learning a new skill!
Time to get back to the books! Talk to you next week!
• Combined Classes
• Observing in Clinic
• Botanical Medicine
• Minor Surgery
• Intern Skills
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