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A Day in the Life of a Med Student: Ruari (Barts)

Day in the Life of a Med Student (1)

Welcome to our new series, A Day in the Life of A Med Student. In this series, we ask a current med student to write about a typical day at medical school – whether this is on placement or in lectures to give you a flavour of what studying medicine is like!

In this blog, we catch up with Ruari, a third year medic at Barts and the London.

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The diverse heart of east London is where Barts and the London calls home – and a day in the life of a Barts student is often just as diverse. I’m a third year at Barts, so I’m in the middle of my first clinical year. I’m also the clinical faculty rep which fills up a lot of my spare time. Here is a typical day in my life as a Barts student.

Working group

An early start to get over to Whitechapel for the third year working group where we discuss what issues the third years are facing at all the different placements and how we can address them, as well as planning any changes to the course.

This is just one of many meetings I might attend across the month as clinical faculty rep, I also go to meetings where we discuss assessment, changes to curriculum, student support – pretty much anything that affects the lives of our students!

Haematology ward rounds

Once that’s wrapped up it’s back on the tube and over to Whips Cross University Hospital in Leytonstone to join the 9am haematology ward round – I’d better be on the ball because the team will be quizzing throughout!

Clinical skills

Ward round finished, it’s time for a quick coffee before clinical skills where we will be revisiting cannulation and venepuncture to make sure everyone is up to scratch for the fast approaching OSCEs.

These sessions are also a good opportunity to make sure everyone gains confidence in performing these procedures so that they can carry them out on patients on the wards.

PBL sessions

Time for lunch break which means time to avail of the staff discount at the canteen. After lunch it’ll usually be off to a clinic or theatres, but today is PBL. After second year, PBL becomes a lot less problem-based and a lot more case-based which can be really useful for putting your learning into context.

All the tutors have a fairly different style but it’s quite relaxed and a nice break after running about the hospital all morning.

Bedside teaching

Before the day ends it’s time for some bedside teaching with the FY1 doctors.

Small groups of students (around three or four) are assigned two FY1s who take an hour or two each week for bedside teaching, so that we can practice physical examinations and history taking with some supervision to make sure we are on the right track and not developing any bad habits.

Once again, I’m told I need to speak a bit slower, should definitely work on that.

Finally done for the day work-wise, but I still have a meeting of the BLSA board which is where all our student reps get together and discuss any issues facing students on the ground level as well as planning all sorts of events! It’s 9pm before I am finished so it’s time to head home and relax for the rest of the evening, because it’ll be another early start for a busy day (as always)!

Words: Ruari McGowan

Want to know more about what life at med school is like? Try these:

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