Clinical rotations mark the final phase of an MD program where students practice medicine under the supervision of medical professionals in hospitals. During this period, students will get opportunities to visit hospitals and clinics for hands-on experience in the medical field.
Clinical rotations foreshadow a physician’s life after residency and are considered one of the most challenging periods in medical studies. The clinical medicine program allows you to diagnose patients and suggest treatments while being monitored by experienced doctors.
Let’s look at what clinical rotations are about and how they prepare you for your future career as a doctor.
What is a clinical rotation?
The clinical medicine curriculum is the second phase of your medical studies lasting from semesters six to ten. This is the last step before earning a degree and entering a medical residency.
Clinical rotations are all about converting your classroom knowledge into practical lessons. You have to build from the foundations laid by the basic science program in medical school.
Clinical medicine consists of core and elective rotations. Core rotations include internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, and psychiatry. Elective rotations can be chosen according to your area of interest and help decide your future specialty. Common elective rotations include cardiology, dermatology, emergency medicine, radiology, neurology, pathology, family medicine, and anesthesiology.
How can clinical rotations benefit your future career?
Clinical rotations provide opportunities for students to develop various skills and interact with residents and other professionals. Let’s dive deeper into how clinical rotations can prepare you for your career as a doctor.
Practical experience is the key to starting a successful career in medicine and clinical rotations give you exactly that. Although basic science classes teach you all about the soft and hard skills required for a doctor, experiencing them in a clinical setting will help you to perform them accurately.
Developing soft skills is crucial to establish a solid career as a physician. Professionalism, ethics, humility, and reliability are skills that you acquire from living through lots of experiences in life.
Constant interaction with patients and hospital staff will help you develop all the essential skills that you need to succeed in medicine. Learning effective communication and relationship-building strategies goes a long way in your medical career.
The clinical medicine program provides you with ample opportunities to develop and cultivate these soft skills.
Decide on your specialty
Most students will only have vague ideas about their area of specialty when entering clinical rotations. Clinical rotations will help you understand your area of interest and the requirements of that medical specialty. Everyday experiences in a hospital should make it clearer for you.
Once you figure out your specialty, you can dedicate time to talking with residents in the same field and build your knowledge in that area.
Clinical rotations are a tough phase in the life of a medical student. But giving your best efforts during this time with focus and dedication can greatly impact your career. Enroll in an MD program and remember that perseverance is the key to success.