Tomorrow’s Doctor

Written by Charleston Academy on . Posted in Achievements, Curriculum, Personal

Doctors to Work Programme

There is a national problem in attracting doctors to work in remote rural areas such as the Highlands. To address this issue NHS Highland launched its “Doctors to Work” programme, giving young people interested in a career in medicine a taste of life in a busy hospital. S6 pupils from across the Highlands successfully applied to take part in the programme, allowing them to spend a week at Raigmore Hospital here in Inverness.

The pupils shadowed consultants, junior doctors, and other staff at work. S6 Charleston Academy pupil George Ashton took part in the programme and was then invited by NHS Highland Board to make a presentation about his experience of the programme and how he felt his participation in it would benefit his career.

george ashton depute head boy

I spent
 time in the
 hospital 
laboratories 
where I learnt 
about the
 scientific processes underpinning
 the diagnosis and management of
 disease.

It was fascinating to see the variety 
of skills needed: from the hands-
on practicalities of pathology to
 the automated complex machinery 
in blood sciences. I observed the 
importance of teamwork and time 
management in order to produce 
rapid but accurate results emphasising 
the crucial role laboratories play in
 medicine.

Observing a surgeon take a history in 
order to obtain a diagnosis was also
 fascinating, highlighting the need for
 good communication skills.

Later, I watched an orthopaedic 
surgeon carrying out a hip replacement operation emphasising the importance of leadership and teamwork. The calm confidence and technical skill
 displayed by a cardiologist during 
a catheterisation procedure was
 inspirational.

During a ward round. I was impressed
 when the consultant knelt down by the 
patient’s chair as they talked to them. Being able to sit in on a MDT meeting 
highlighted the value of teamwork and
 good communication in order to make 
the correct management decision for 
the patient.
 Speaking to students and doctors
 during the programme provided a 
significant insight into their training 
and experiences, including the physical
 and emotional pressures of the job.
 I now have a greater understanding 
of the wide range of specialties in
 medicine and the wider health care
 team involved in patient care.

The successful Doctors at Work programme is run in partnership with our Guidance teachers. The NHS hope to double the number of students participating in 2013, with the programme running in June and September. This year students will also be able to spend time working with local GPs.

To find out more, speak to your Guidance teacher in school. Alternatively email Karen Murray at NHS Highland.

A version of this article originally appeared in the January 2013 edition of NHS Highland NEWS

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