Thursday, September 10, 2015

what's in my white coat?

what's in my white coat Now that I'm about a third of the way through my third year, I've become quite used to wearing my white coat all the time. While it changes with every rotation, here are the things I lug around with me every day:

one: I generally wear less make up on my rotations (mostly because I'm really lazy at 5:30 in the morning), but this Dior chapstick gives me a little color and keeps my lips moisturized in the dry hospital air. It also lasts a realllllly long time.

two: an iphone/tablet is every doesn't-know-this-drug medical student's best friend. My favorite apps include UpToDate, Epocrates, Lab Values +, and QxCalculate. I also keep the UWorld app on there so I can do practice questions during down time. And for those rotations that have quite a bit of down time (like my current rotation where I'm waiting for the babies to be ready to be born), a backup phone charger is a must. 

three: we received stethoscopes from our school during our white coat ceremony, and I may have played a little stethoscope merry go round so I could have a red version. I prefer to keep mine in my pocket most of the time, unless I'm on a rotation like family medicine where I didn't wear a white coat.

four: this little reference book was possibly the best $5 I've ever spent. It's 20 small pages, with the information grouped based on type, and is great for...referencing. I use it mostly for the lab values, but also have used a few of the extra pages to keep track of how to read EKGs. 

five: we have a morning of lectures every other week, and the information presented is always super applicable, so I keep a small notebook in my pocket at all times. These Moleskine notebooks are thin enough to not take up a bunch of room in my pockets, plus they are kind of cute ;)

six: this folding clipboard was actually an early birthday present from CR. We've both seen a ton of residents use them, so he figured right before we both started our three months of internal medicine it would be a good time to buy some of our own. This would have been great to have during surgery as well, when we were writing information and future orders on our patient lists throughout the day, and often don't have a desk to write on. 

seven: SNACKS! I'm someone who needs to eat (duh). It's hard during some rotations that aren't based around a normal schedule, so there were certain days on surgery where I didn't get a meal between 5 AM and 6 PM. Pocket snacks were the only thing that kept me going. My BFF Caitlin sent me a package of peanut butter packets, and they were an absolutely lifesaver. Other pocket snacks have included turkey sticks and quest bars. When I'm on rotations where I have easy access to my bag, I usually bring a couple of hard boiled eggs and vegetables too. I also keep mints in my purse to freshen up afterwards ;)

eight: I love (LOVE) office supplies, so I'm constantly trying out new pens. My favorite pen for the last two years has been the Tul needlepoint pens. While pricey, I find that makes me keep track of them so much more. I haven't lost a single one yet!

nine: just a simple pocket flashlight that also has a handy little chart on the side of pupil diameters. 

So that's it! If any of you have suggestions for other things to stuff into these pockets, I'd love to hear them!