I just finished a month of my subi, where I basically act as an intern on the medicine floors. Another medical student and I are supervised by a PGY3. I was responsible for up to 5 patients at a time. I wrote their H&Ps, wrote their progress notes, and presented to the attendings. On top of this, I was able to put in orders for my patients (with ultimate approval by my PGY3). We had Q5 call days, meaning that every 5 days one team was on call, either working from 6pm-12pm or 6am-7pm. I’m not going to lie, it was exhausting. Working 7 days/week for 12 hrs/day with 3 days off was grueling!
Despite the crazy hours, I definitely learned a TON. I realized that medical knowledge can only take you so far. Learning how to communicate with my peers, the attendings, the residents, consultants, nurses and other support staff is imperative to delivering efficient care. There is a whole other side to medicine that you really get to appreciate. When you’re a med student, it didn’t matter to me about patients dispo because it wasn’t something I was responsible. As a subi, I had to communicate with social work and case management, facilitating the process of locating patients to their respective endpoints. Often, this required input from other subspecialties about follow-up. On top of this, I had a pager and so I was responding to nursing pages or pharmacy pages.
Looking back, even though I felt chronically tired, I had a great time and I learned quite a bit!