Week 1 at Redfield
My first day in Redfield started with a nice warm welcome and gift basket from businesses with the community. I was also surprised to find a nice piano in my room, which I have not played yet, but might try it out with an old recital piece before the end of my stay.
During my first week here, I have noticed how open the facility is to having students and allowing them to get excellent hands on experience. With that, on my second day the nursing staff had allowed me to start an IV and in the clinic I was able to diagnosis and treat my own patient. Also during the week, my partner and I were provided a tour at South Dakota Developmental Center (SDDC), along with a little history lesson behind the school.
At the end of my first week, I was very impressed with the flow of our days and what the facility allows us to do as students. Being near graduation, it was very important to me to be in an area that allowed me to do more and I have been successfully doing that during my stay here in Redfield.
My second week has come and gone faster than I could blink an eye. The week had included emergency room calls, mock drowning scene, trip to Aberdeen, and psychology consults.
During this week, we were invited to watch the lifeguards at the community pool prepare for a drowning incident. Not only was the session beneficial for them, but it was a learning lesson for everyone on how to respond to the situation and appropriate steps to get help. It started with five lifeguards hopping in the freshly filled pool with freezing temperatures and then one lucky lady jumping off the diving board to be rescued. It demonstrated that it takes multiple people to be involved and everyone needs to be on full alert and fast acting.
Also during the week, we got to take a trip to Aberdeen to be educated on our community projects, but it was also a time to meet with other students and discuss some of their experiences. It was great to be able to catch up with other classmates and hear about some of the cases they have experienced and exchange knowledge regarding the presentation of the case.
Friday we were allowed to sit in on psychology consults, which helped me get a better understanding of the diversity in psychology. I had previously done a psychology rotation, but my area focused on outpatient patients so this experience was very beneficial in seeing patients that are at times unstable and knowing how to visit with them effectively to gain trust.
So far in my two-week experience, I have experienced many new things from starting IVs, placing casts, shaving off skin lesions, and observing psychology consults. This program has allowed me to grow to be more diverse as a provider and be able to do certain tasks that I may need to do if I am working in a rural area.
Another week has come and gone in Redfield. Hard to believe we only have one week left! Week three was a busy and eventful week for Kaylie and I. On Monday, we were allowed to travel back to the times of a drive-in movie theater experience. We arrived at the drive-in at dusk and got our popcorn and drinks and enjoyed Pitch Perfect 2! Luckily the bugs weren’t too bad, although for a few minutes I sensed them swarming around my head! As some would say the movie was Aca-Perfect and was a great time to relax and enjoy the great activities Redfield has to offer.
A couple days later, we were offered the opportunity to go fishing with Dr. Owens and he challenged us to catch more fish than two other students that had previously went fishing on a tour and caught the max. As soon as we got the invite, we went on a hunt for rain boots and we were able to get a pretty nice tour of the local shops in town because believe it or not many places don’t sell rain boots! We arrived at Dr. Owens house and we’re off on our fishing adventure. Once we got to the fishing spot, we ran into a difficulty of opening the gate, and it took three of us girls to finally accomplish the job, but we did it! The poles were set up and we were set at our spots to start fishing. It was quiet at first, but Kaylie did catch a decent sized catfish! I, on the other hand, seemed to attract the fish because there were jumping all around my line, but never latched. Although, I did finally have a catch, but was disappointed to find out that it was only a branch!
Besides the fun evening activities we were able to participate in this week, we were able to get experience in physical therapy, lab draws, ultrasounds, and telemedicine conference. It has been a great learning experience thus far in seeing everything that goes in to practicing medicine and understanding what goes into a test that myself as a provider will be ordering. I look forward to having a great last week!
The final week at Redfield has arrived. It is hard to believe that we are already at the end of this experience! Kaylie and I had a busy week finishing up our community project and gathering information for our paper. We also put together our presentation for a recap of our time here in Redfield and realized how horrible we are at taking pictures. During our experience, we took at most 5 pictures. Since we forgot to take pictures, we decided to go back to each of the facilities we got to spend time at and take pictures with them, which was a nice way to go back and thank them for taking the time to show us to their side of medicine.
The last week at a rotation is always the hardest because it is at the time when you truly feel comfortable and used to the way things work and then it is time to go. We were sent off with a taco dinner supplied by the staff and with a gift from the coordinator. From my experience in Redfield, I have come to appreciate all the capabilities a rural community hospital/clinic has to offer their area and the ease of access to care. A patient is able to be seen in the clinic and get the majority of the other tests needed performed just down the hallway or pick up their medication right out the clinic. Another aspect of rural medicine that draws me in, is the relationship that the providers build with their patients and the trust they put in each other, which impacts both the provider and patient in positive ways.
In the end, from my experience as I search for jobs, I plan to focus my search in the rural communities. I grew up in a small town and prior to this experience I already had expectations to work rural, but this experience has encouraged me even more to pursue that for my career. Thank you Redfield and REHPS for providing an educational and motivational experience for myself and others.