The first two weeks of my REHPS experience have been invaluable to me. I have been exposed to several cultures in and around Martin, and seeing more severe poverty than I have ever seen elsewhere. I have been getting some hands-on procedural experience that I haven’t gotten the chance to before. It feels like we’ve seen everything – there has been a trauma case, a drug overdose, elderly falls, and car accidents just in the short time we have been present.
The community has taken my partner and I into their arms, and I have felt welcomed and valued here. The providers are incredible teachers as well as friends, so I am feeling more connected to the community every day.
My time at the Bennett County Hospital was invaluable. I had the opportunity to see each piece of the healthcare team work together and to understand the intricate workings of a rural hospital. Most importantly, I was exposed to some of the hardships of living in a rural community. As a healthcare provider, it is important to understand why patients behave the way they do (miss appointments, don’t follow-up with specialists, use the ER instead of the clinic) so instead of being frustrated with them, I can work with them to overcome barriers to healthcare in the rural setting. Furthermore, I had the opportunity to become good friends with the providers in Bennett County. While some medical students would turn up their noses at learning under PA’s, I firmly believe that learning under these providers was more valuable than any other experience that I have had so far. Every one of the providers was supportive, encouraging, and brilliant, allowing me to leave feeling very confident in my skills. I had an incredible time, thanks to everyone who works at the Bennett County Hospital.