There are loads of survival guides out there to help medical students adapt well to university life but which ones should you be taking notice of? I’ve put together a list of my top 6 must reads - I hope you find them useful.
1. BMJ’s Guide for Tomorrow's Doctors
If you don’t read anything else, read this. It covers everything from the pros and cons of using the library to essential medical websites (check out number 6 on the list :D).
2. Money Matters
Ok, this isn’t the most exciting topic but definitely a stress you could do without. The Money Saving Expert gives some great advice on how to make money and manage your finances.
This guide includes 4 simple but essential study tips relevant throughout your years at university.
4. Dos and Don’ts
Some great advice from Dundee University here on the dos and don’ts of surviving medical school.
5. Advice to Junior Doctors
Karin shares some of her hospital experiences and gives advice to junior doctors.
6. Looking after yourself
To get the most out of university it’s important that you look after yourself. The NHS provide some great tips from eating healthily on a budget to managing stress during exam time.
If you know of any other useful survival guides or would like to create your own please send them across to me firstname.lastname@example.org.
An anatomy revision guide, focused upon the upper limb, lower limb & back.
Originally created in 2009 as a study aid for students at Cardiff University School of Medicine, it was substantially updated in 2010, and this Second Edition contains more detailed chapters, particularly with respect to musculature, cross-sections & relevant clinical anatomy.
Further information can be found under the Preface & Introduction.
This guideline covers diagnosing and managing community- and hospital-acquired pneumonia in adults. It aims to improve accurate assessment and diagnosis of pneumonia to help guide antibiotic prescribing and ensure that people receive the right treatment.
This is a review of 'Research Skills for Medical Students' 1st Edition (Allen, AK – 2012 Sage: London ISBN 9780857256010)
Themes – Research Skills, Critical Analysis Medical Students
Thesis – Research and critical analysis are important skills as highlighted by Tomorrow’s Doctors
Allen, drawing on many years’ experience as a researcher and lecturer in the Institute of Education, at Cardiff University has bridged the gap in Research methodology literature targeted at medical students. Pushing away from comparative texts somewhat dry and unengaging tones, this book encourages student interaction, empowering the student from start to finish. Not so much a book as a helpful hand guiding the student through the pitfalls and benefits of research and critical analysis from start to finish.
Part of the Learning Matters Medical Education series, in which each book relates to an outcome of Tomorrow’s Doctors, this book is written from the a lecturers standpoint, guiding students through making sense of research, judging research quality, how to carry out research personally, writing research articles and how to get writings published. All of these are now imperative skills in what is a very competitive medical employment market.
This concise book, through its clarity, forcefulness, correct and direct use of potentially new words to the reader, Allen manages to fully develop the books objectives, using expert narrative skills.
With Allen’s interest in Global health, it is little wonder why this books exposition is clear and impartial, Allen consistently refers back to the Tomorrows doctors guidelines at the beginning of each chapter, enabling students to link the purpose of that chapter to the grander scheme. This enables Allen to argue the relevance of each chapter to the student before they have disregarded it. Openly declared as a book aimed at medical students (and Foundation trainees where appropriate) the authors style remains formal, but with parent like undertones. It is written to encapsulate and involve the student reader personally, with Allen frequently using ‘you’ as if directly speaking to the reader, and useful and appropriate activities that engage the reader in the research process, in an easy to use student friendly format.
This book is an excellent guide for all undergraduate health students, not limited to medical students, and I thank Ann K Allen for imparting her knowledge in such a useful and interactive way.'
This was original published on medical educator.
What's the problem?
Since I first started working with doctors, one of the main complaints I've heard is about electronic portfolios:
"It's so slow",
"It's really ugly",
"It's basically unusable",
"It crashed the day before submissions!",
"It's SO unintuitive"
I've heard all of these things from different doctors at different stages in different specialities in different locations. Write a tweet about ePortfolio and the odds are you'll have it retweeted and replied to numerous times within minutes. There's clearly a real problem here, and a real frustration among doctors!
What's the Solution?
Over the last two years I've spent lots of time talking to a variety of doctors about this and have come to the conclusion that a new modern, robust solution is needed. We need software that is fresh and intuitive to use, that doesn't get overloaded and that has the features that people actually want!
The Meducation team agrees, and so we've partnered up with our friends at Podmedics to make this a reality. We are making oPortfolio - the Open Portfolio - an open-source system guided by the needs of the trusts, deanaries and colleges, but with a firm focus on the doctors who will be using it. Over the next few days we'll be launching a kickstarter project to let you support what we're doing. In the meantime, please sign up on our website to receive updates about what we're doing!
This image is part of our online anatomy trainer. We are happy to share it with the meducation community.
Stop worrying about learning anatomy and start doing it the efficient way. Sign up at [www.kenhub.com](https://www.kenhub.com "www.kenhub.com") to pass your next anatomy exam with ease.
Last week in my personal blog I reflected on humility as defined by James Ryle:
God given self-assurance that eliminates the need to prove to others the worth of who you are and the rightness of what you do.
Ryle suggests, from 1 Peter 5:5-7, that central to humbling ourselves is throwing our cares on to God. Every concern, care and fear being hurled on to God who is faithful and powerful enough to handle them. When we know that we are loved by Him no matter what and that He is in control no matter what, then we remove the need to prove ourselves or protect ourselves. We become humble – secure enough to allow God to be in control and to serve others. Once our eyes are lifted from ourselves we are able to see others to love and serve them.
Just before writing the last post I was reading an article about the report by Robert Francis QC on the appalling treatment of patients at Stafford Hospital. One of the recurring comments made by many different people is that the pressure of targets and incentives increasingly displaces focus on compassion and patient care. When doctors, nurses and managers alike are bombarded with ever increasing and regularly changes hoops to jump through and targets to meet, no wonder their attention and efforts are dragged from patient care.
I’ve seen something of the effects of this in a family member who for many years worked as a Health Visitor. In their decades of service they saw an ever increasing and ever changing string of targets and goals alongside cost cutting moves that stripped resources and personnel. Their desire to be compassionate and offer the best care possible became more and more stressful until it finally proved too much. She recently changed jobs.
Now I’m not trying to attack the NHS and I am well aware that so many people receive great care. But this is not a new concern that is being bandied around with fresh vigour in the light of Stafford Hospital. What struck me is that it demonstrates on an institutional level what also seems true at a personal level. Namely, that when we are forced to operate from a place of insecurity we begin to miss the most important things. NHS services have to meet targets to receive funding to simply keep operating – there will be no patient care if there is no hospital. Oftentimes, especially as a leader, we can live with a sense that, unless we meet expectations or make people like us or recognise our worth, then we’ll have no influence to do any of the things we know we are called to do.
The secret of personal humility is to recognise that we are already loved by our Father before we even move our finger; to recognise that He is control and we can throw every care on Him. A person who can live from that place of security finds, free from the need to prove themselves or their actions, can begin to simply do what they are made and called to do. They are no longer pulled in different directions by a multiplicity of cares. What about an institution?
It strikes me that a similar solution is needed for the NHS. Is there a way to give security for doctors, nurses and caring professionals so that they are able to do what they are called to do without constantly watching their back? Obviously there is a need for accountability for the safety of patients and to ensure a good standard of care, but the constant need to prove worth and achievement cannot be helpful for those who are called to compassionate care.
I’m not a healthcare professional. I don’t know exactly what this would look like. But I recognise in the diagnosis of struggles in the NHS, God’s diagnosis of struggles in many people’s lives. The way He designed us to live with Him is often a good basis to begin to imagine a new way for every level of society to function.
So, my question is this: what would a humble NHS look like? To whom could a National Health Service throw it’s concerns and cares?
There are various triangles of the neck, largely divided by the sternocleidomastoid muscle to form anterior and posterior triangles. Some triangles are more 'important' that others, and this simplified visual mnemonic hopes to emphasises this.