I was nervous for my first rotation for many reasons. I was afraid about the early mornings and late nights. I was afraid about getting called in the middle of the night when there was an emergency. I was most afraid, however, of actually having to take care of a patient for the first time.
I know that having a patient would not mean that I was solely responsible for its care, as there would be senior clinicians, residents, interns, nurses, and other students there to help me along the way. However, it is still a sobering reality that once patients are “yours,” they are truly at your mercy. Your decisions and how you handle them has a direct effect on their well-being. That idea is both terrifying and exciting at the same time!
That being said, my first patient was in my care for less than 24 hours.
The doe kid arrived at New Bolton Center the Sunday evening before I started my first rotation on Monday, and she was back with the owner on Tuesday afternoon. For me, having such a quick turnaround with my patient helped make my transition into clinics that much easier.
It was a moderately hands-on experience in the sense that there were a few minor procedures I could take part in that made me actually feel like I had a part in the treatment of this animal. It was an extremely positive experience, and I’m ready for my next one.