Lessons from a Frontline Fellow During the COVID-19 Pandemic
While much of our daily lives are filled with uncertainty in the time of COVID-19, there’s one thing for sure: being on the front lines of the COVID-19 fight is an incredibly valuable experience for current NP and PA fellows. We (virtually) sat down with one PA fellow , we’ll call him Brian, on the front lines to discuss how being a part of the pandemic response has aided his learning and skill development over the last few weeks.
From Questioning to Confident
Like many new NP/PA graduates, Brian decided to pursue a fellowship opportunity to gain more clinical experience before entering into the field on his own. He opened up and shared with us that prior to completing his fellowship, he often felt uncertain about his clinical abilities and would second guess himself, but the skills he learned and practiced while completing his fellowship now allow him to treat patients with the confidence and conviction needed to be a great healthcare provider.
The Ultimate Test
Everything he’s learned has been tested over the past few weeks as the ICU he’d been rotating in had become a designated COVID unit. From managing patients directly and interacting with their families to gathering supplies for his team, it’s safe to say that Brian has been tested in every aspect of his training.
Through all of the trials and tribulations, Brian took away three main lessons from his fellowship and subsequent experience in the first against COVID-19. First, he shared that medicine is a team sport. He said, “More than ever I have relied on my fellow APP's, nurses, respiratory therapists, dietitians, and clerks to streamline all aspects of patient care.” Second, he emphasized the importance of clear communication. He and his team relied heavily on daily huddles and complete transparency to address all concerns in the safest manner possible. The third lesson, he said, is that there is no ego in medicine. “We must act selflessly, treat fairly, and practice humility in our approach to this pandemic to save lives and emerge victorious on the other side,” he added.