We’re now in week 4 of my 8th trimester and I’ve already begun seeing patients! I am an intern at the HEC Clinic in St Petersburg under Dr. Nino. She has made the transition to clinic very smooth, and I am so grateful for that. For the first few weeks, we shadowed upper trimester students, began scribing for them, and facilitated completing physical examinations and re-evaluations. The upper trimester students have also been patient with us showing us the ropes around the clinic, teaching us how to navigate medical records, and properly write notes and treatment plans. Dr. Nino has encouraged us begin integrating ourselves into appointments through performing sections of a telehealth new patient appointment, obtaining vitals, palpating, conducting cervical and lumbar orthopedics, etc. Upper trimester students have helped us review how to do thorough histories and physical exams, and have enabled us to perform portions of these examinations with their patients (under their watchful eyes!).
After fully conducting a telehealth on a new patient last week (with an upper-tri assisting), I conducted a thorough in-person physical exam on that patient, which included obtaining a successful antecubital venipuncture blood draw and urine analysis. With all the help and review I’ve received these last weeks and the knowledge I’ve obtained through my curriculum at NUHS, I felt mostly confident throughout this appointment. Of course, I had moments of hesitancy, but I felt comforted having an upper-tri student observing me to jump in if needed and Dr. Nino just next door.
I also appreciate that Dr. Nino will assign us patients with conditions within specific fields we are interested in. For instance, I am interested in pediatrics and functional medicine. I’ve been assigned to shadow certain upper tri students who have patients with those concerns and have been able to collaborate with those students and Dr. Nino on potential nutritional supplements that would enhance their treatment and wellness.
It’s been really fun for me to discover niches in chiropractic that I really love, such as the nutritional aspect. I’m looking forward to continuing to apply everything I’ve learned, and finally have the ability to help my community.
For more information about chiropractic program clinical opportunities, click here.