A Day in the Life: Pediatrics Clinic

Although at some point I’ll post a review of the rotation as a whole, I thought I’d share what a day looks like for me when I’m in primary care clinic as a resident pediatrician! Let me know in the comments what questions you have or what you’d like me to talk about in my review later!

06:30: wake up and feed my diva dog who demands his kibble be mixed with water and wet food. He’s a great and affectionate alarm clock and it’s pretty difficult to snooze. Pour coffee into my body and try to put on enough mascara and concealer to not look like death.

07:32: leave to make sure I get a good parking spot at work.

07:44: actually leave, will not get a great spot but will show up exactly on time.

08:00: morning report starts, which is often a case-based session led by one of the chiefs, an attending/fellow/resident, or, on occasion, me!

09:00: head up to clinic and look at the list for my morning preceptor. Check any labs or imaging I ordered recently and call families as needed to give results. Find a patient to see and let my preceptor know where I’m headed!

  • typically I run the whole visit at this point in my training as “the” doctor, with attending backup. It’s a great way to learn to be efficient and pick up tips on things to improve, but always with the knowledge that when I don’t know something I have an immediate support.
  • I don’t usually give SOAP style presentations anymore since they take up a lot of time. Especially with well child checks, I’ll let my preceptor know what the parents’ concerns were, what the child’s concerns were, what my concerns were, and then my plan, but otherwise report only the most pertinent positives and negatives.
  • What’s really fun is when either a) my preceptor checks on the patient after I’m completely done just to “bless” the encounter, or b) my preceptor goes with me into every visit and watches me see every patient on the schedule. The first is fun because it really feels like it’s my own clinic, and the second is fun because I get real-time feedback from an experienced pediatrician, with actual time constraints on the appointment that I’ll have in real life as an attending.

12:00: wrap up my last encounter, then head down to grab lunch to take to noon conference. This tends to be a bit more didactic and is likely to be a lecture from an attending. Sometimes we also use this hour for housestaff meetings or ethics conferences.

13:00: at this point I have a few possibilities: go back to clinic (usually with a different preceptor), drive to my own continuity clinic at an FQHC a few blocks away, head to a seminar for my leadership program, or find a quiet space to get some work done on my quality improvement project. Occasionally I get the afternoon off to read which I sometimes do from home in order to spend more time with Auggie! (Not that he’s spoiled…)

18:00: clinic ends and I go home to make dinner and study! I like reading from Nelson’s or Peds in Review about something I saw that day. I also usually have at least two books going so I’ll spend some time reading, and I have to admit that most nights I turn the TV on for a while too, mostly for some noise.

That’s pretty much it! What would you like more details about?


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