The REHPS experience has impacted my student career in ways I did not think were possible. I set out a goal of obtaining a more holistic view of the healthcare system, and I was able to achieve that to the fullest degree. My partner in this experience was a fourth-year med student from whom I learned a ton from. On the first day of our experience, we introduced ourselves and gave our numbers to the different departments in the hospital, ranging from radiology to the emergency department. This allowed us to be in contact with the majority of the hospital if there was ever a teaching moment or interesting case or procedure.
Some of my most interesting and valuable takeaway experiences occurred in departments I had the least knowledge about. I spent a day in both wound care and dialysis and found these to be very rewarding experiences. In both of these instances I was able to sit down with patients and discuss their chronic disease states and the struggles these presented in their daily life. This only increased my passion to be in the healthcare field as I want to have the ability to assist these individuals in the future.
I also gained an incredible amount of interdisciplinary knowledge from my partner throughout the experience. During the first week, we would see patients in the clinic and discuss their problems with them before they would see their physician. After we met with the patients, we would then discuss the case and I would learn how to evaluate the findings. After the first week, we spent most of our time in the hospital adjacent to the clinic. On most mornings, we would begin by reviewing the inpatient charts and then proceed to round on the patients and give an assessment to the attending physician. I was able to utilize a majority of the skills I have learned previously in school, like providing dosage recommendations, account for hepatic and renal impairment, and call Sioux Falls Sanford for a brief infectious disease consult.
My time spent in the pharmacy was also filled with great learning experiences. The pharmacists were all extremely warm and welcoming to me being there. Any question I had was met with an enthusiastic response. My pharmacist preceptor had a list of questions to quiz me with, in which I was really appreciative and learned more than I thought possible.
Huron was an incredibly nice and welcoming town. We interacted with the community of several different occasions by giving sun safety presentations to a preschool class and the Dakota Energy Cooperative. I cannot recommend this experience enough as it allowed me to interact with numerous amounts of amazing people to help others.