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Self Reflection

My psychiatry rotation at Queens Hospital was great. I liked having my classmates with me, and Dr. Alie and the staff in CPEP were amazing. It was by far my favorite rotation to date and really sparked my interest in psychiatry. Before this rotation, I already had an interest in psychiatry because I enjoyed the psychiatry class with Professor Alie during the didactic year but my experience at the hospital really enhanced it.

I particularly enjoyed it when the attendings and physician assistants would take us to see the patients and we would interview them. I learned that some of these patients are unfortunately very sick, which makes them poor historians. During this rotation, I realized how much the medical staff relied on collateral information from family members or friends.

I really enjoyed the day-to-day activities at the site, which involved seeing patients, calling, or speaking with their families, and assisting the staff in writing the HPI. Writing the HPI provided a great opportunity to get feedback. Some of the physician assistants were kind enough to critique our HPI and offer advice on how to improve it. I definitely got much practice writing notes during this rotation.

If I end up going into psychiatry, this rotation will be a big reason why. Yes, the environment was sometimes challenging, and the staff members often faced risks such as getting hit, spit at, or having urine thrown at them. However, there is something very interesting about the practice. The medications really make a difference in the patients’ lives. Many of the disorders these patients have cannot be cured, but the medications at least give them a chance for their life to return to somewhat normal.

Overall, this rotation was a great experience and my favorite so far. I am very thankful for the learning experience.