Working with Veterans as a DC Intern
National University DC student Jason Rosenberg recently completed a four-week clinical intern rotation at the Illiana Veteran’s Administration Health Care System in Danville, Illinois. There, he treated veterans under the supervision of the staff DC clinician in the physical medicine department. The rotation at Illiana is one of many hospital rotations and clerkships offered to qualified students at NUHS.
Jason worked with WWII, Korean, Vietnam, and Gulf War veterans, and also veterans newly returned from Afghanistan and Iraq. “The clinic saw from 20- 40 patients each day with two exam rooms and four adjusting tables. I personally saw about 7-12 patients each day. It was a great chance to learn how to handle a high patient volume.”
“The best thing about the rotation is the number of different conditions you see in a short period of time. We treated both outpatients and inpatients with everything from lumbar and cervical disk problems, facet syndrome, degenerative joint disease, degenerative disc disease, headache, migraine, rotator cuff, and shoulder impingement. Most patients had multiple medical issues, which provided a great learning experience.”
“We were working in conjunction with physical therapists, occupational therapists, and MDs, so it was a real interdisciplinary setting. We were co-managing all of the patients, as every patient came to the clinic from a referral from a primary MD,” says Jason. “We could instantly access a patient’s files from other physicians, as well as any diagnostic images.”
National University offers six four-week rotations at Illiana each year to qualified students in their tenth trimester. The staff DC accepts only one intern at a time, “so there is lots of one-on-one time with the clinician,” says Jason.
“While I was in Danville, I lived in a house on the campus of the facility with other rotating med students from different professions,” he says. “Danville is a typical American small town, and it’s an easy drive to Chicago, Indianapolis or Champaign, if you’re looking for more to do.”
Jason recommends the Illiana rotation for anyone with the ambition to see a wider range of health conditions and help a deserving population. “Advancing the DC profession within the Veterans Services system goes a long way in furthering the acceptance of our profession.” After graduation, Jason plans on opening a general family practice in the greater Washington, DC area, bringing with him all the skills he learned both at NUHS and during his unique experience in Danville.