David Boedeker
First Week at Sturgis
The first week in Sturgis went well. It started off by meeting with the CEO and getting a personal tour of the hospital. Later in the week he took us for a community tour in his truck. The hospital inpatient area has undergone an extensive remodel and is quite nice. We have been quite busy and have essentially shadowed every position there is. I was shocked to see only one pharmacist for the entire hospital and the attached 84 bed nursing home. However, this theme tends to be the norm for multiple positions. There is currently only one PA employed by the hospital. Everyone wears multiple hats and has multiple roles they play. I can say that I did expect that in a rural setting.

They definitely love students at Sturgis hospital. They host the annual nursing camp through SDSU. Needless to say, there have been a lot of high schoolers with stethoscopes. I wish I could have done something like that when I was younger! We get free food in the cafeteria and it is probably the best hospital food that I have ever eaten.

Rick and I have done some exploring. We ate dinner one night at the famous Knuckle Saloon. We also went on a hike up Spearfish Canyon where we saw some amazing views of waterfalls. We also found some great fishing holes. I will not disclose their locations.

Week Two
The second week of REHPS Sturgis consisted of more interdisciplinary observing/shadowing. The week started off in our “Huddle”, however nobody yelled “Omaha” to my disappointment. Huddle is a great way to see each department interacting to aid the admitted patients. This is team-based medicine at its finest and allows everyone to be on the same page On several of the days we spent time with Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech Therapy. This was incredibly beneficial for me as a future clinician.

Rick and I got to observe a colonoscopy and saw firsthand why preventative medicine is valuable as this individual had several pre-cancerous polyps. These would have for sure turned into cancer in the next 10 years. When not at the hospital I was with my clinical preceptor seeing patients. I am amazed at the amount of interesting medical cases that we see here.

The highlight of the week was when Rick and I volunteered to cook breakfast items for the long term care facility’s monthly “Breakfast Dinner Night”. I was making French Toast. The residents were quite nice and loved the food and time with their families. ion at this time. We are planning on bringing the poles out. To be continued….

Week Three:
The third week of REHPS Sturgis was a short week due to the of July holiday. The week started on Wednesday for me as I was visiting family over the holiday break. We spent an hour or so of the mornings in Huddle. It is nice to see older patients making progress, and trying to assess the newer patients on the floor. Part of the week was spent in the long term care facility. Its operation is completely different than the hospital side of things.

The highlight of the week was spending time with the Director of Economic Development for Sturgis. Rick and I learned how fast Sturgis is growing in industry, and is predicted to grow even more over the next five years. They try and look at the community as a whole. For example, they realized that they had a housing problem (shortage). In order to get workers and their families to move here, they would need to build more affordable homes. This led to the next conundrum, lack of child care. They have now addressed all of these issues. The Director did say that education and healthcare are the two most important reasons people decide to move to a community and/or start a business medium.

The week ended in the lab. I have never been inside of this type of lab. It was very neat seeing all of the machines with their particular roles in measuring various compounds in patients’ blood. Now I understand why a Troponin I takes longer compared to the rest of the complete metabolic panel.