Putting Your Intern Pants On: 2020 Medical Student to Intern Transition Workshop

Participants & presenters of the 2020 student to internship workshop at the completion of the Pam McLean workshop: dealing with difficult situations

A medical student to internship workshop was initiated by the Flinders NT Regional Training Hub (FNT RTH), the inaugural workshop was successfully delivered over two days in December 2020 during the Flinders graduation week. With the intention to celebrate the achievements of final year medical students completing the Doctor of Medicine (MD) program, complement the 4th year Flinders NTMP clinical program aimed at developing skills for internship and lay foundations for the intern orientation programs run by Top End Health Service (TEHS) and Central Australia Health Service (CAHS). The invitation was extended to all doctors undertaking an internship in the NT.

The workshop was designed for the teaching and facilitation to be peer and near peer led which turned out to be one of the biggest strengths and successes of the program. Junior doctors were enthusiastic and engaged, with a small group led by Dr Fayth Christie putting together a draft paper proposing a program structure which followed the patient journey from admission through to discharge. Activities were designed to reflect on teachings and learnings already acquired. Senior clinicians and pharmacists supported via delivery of some sessions. After morning tea on the first day, the students broke out into groups to undertake simulated clinical rotations in a practical setting which focused on ward round notes, consulting speciality teams, being the cover doctor and code blue simulation.

Day two entailed a four-hour workshop delivered by the Pam McLean Centre. The Centre is a not-for-profit organisation which has evolved into a leading provider of evidence-based communications skills training for medical students, doctors, and allied health clinicians. The workshop was facilitated by Joy Stewart (Clinical Psychologist) and Dr Renee Lim (Medical Doctor and actor) who previously delivered a very successful workshop to Senior Clinicians of TEHS. Participants were immersed in realistic scenarios and given the opportunity to practice and refine skills used for dealing with difficult situations.

An underlying intention of the workshop was also to promote peer bonding and mentoring through a team-based practical approach complimented with conversations around wellbeing and near peer mentoring opportunities. To top it off the winner of the lucky door prize was Joshua Dickson, who will have the opportunity to attend the 2021 Australasian Doctors’ Health Conference that has a focus on raising awareness of doctors’ and medical students’ health and wellbeing.

The workshop ended with a celebratory social function held at Beachfront Darwin with graduands and TEHS junior doctors. The FNT RTH would particularly like to thank all the junior doctors for their enthusiasm and leadership. Feedback from the participants showed that confidence levels increased post workshop and that overall the 2-day workshop was valued very much, FNT RTH wish the 2021 doctors undertaking internship in the NT all the best.

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