There’s nothing like being in the trenches to understand what a physician really does. When Salam Osman, a second-year student in the Northeast Ohio Medical University College of Medicine, participated in the Leroy Rogers Summer Preceptorship Program of the Ohio Academy of Family Physicians (OAFP) Foundation, she had the chance to do just that.
Osman was matched with preceptor Deborah Plate, D.O., at Cleveland Clinic Akron General hospital and worked with her – and Dr. Plate’s patients – to develop a patient education pamphlet on the Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine.
Below, Osman shares the reflection that she wrote for the OAFP Foundation about her Leroy Rogers Summer Experience.
Whenever someone says the word “doctor,” the first thing that comes to my mind when I close my eyes is a primary care physician. On July 15, 2019, I embarked on what was going to be the most educational and fulfilling experience of my medical career. I am so glad that I opened an email I received in November of 2018 from Mary Sherman, the Family Medicine Administrative Coordinator at our school. Because I opened that email, I was fortunate enough to learn from wonderful clinicians and students at the Cleveland Clinic Akron General. The four weeks that I spent there were meaningful, memorable, and dynamic.
The preceptor that I worked with was Dr. Deborah Plate, DO. I closely worked with her and her patients as we brainstormed ideas to use as part of my patient education pamphlet. After some discussion, we agreed to make HPV vaccine advocacy the focus of my four weeks at the Cleveland Clinic—I even made pamphlets that discussed the benefits of HPV vaccines and distributed them at Dr. Plate’s office.
The highlight of my experience with Leroy Rogers, however, revolved around the scheduling and organization of my duties. Even though I expected to work solely with Dr. Plate, the medical education coordinator at the hospital saw it to my advantage to obtain an M3/M4 schedule instead. Every hour, every day, I was doing something different with a different preceptor. My mornings would often start at 7:30am, doing inpatient rounds with a resident. Then at 8am, we would have morning report, where all the physicians, students, pharmacists, and residents would gather and present cases and recent admissions. My mornings would consist of either office hours until noon, or some sort of nursing home visit/women’s shelter visit. During lunch time, I would eat food in the cafeteria with my M3 and M4 friends from my school. The afternoon required me to do office hours with another physician/nurse, or have an EKG simulation lab. Sometimes, pharmacy sessions would be held. Every Wednesday afternoon, the residents and I would have didactic sessions, listening to guest speakers on various topics such as financial planning, being an empathetic listener as a physician, and how to sensitively approach patients with end-of-life care discussions. All in all, this schedule definitely kept me on my toes, and I am oh so thankful that I got an accurate preview of what an M3 rotation looks like. This gives me more motivation to do well on Step 1 since I know what is awaiting me on the other side of the tunnel.
I highly recommend this program to any M1 student who is seeking a meaningful, hands-on, and eye-opening summer experience. This program reaffirmed and solidified my love and respect for family medicine as a career and vocation.