Nov 28

Day in the Life: Inpatient Family Medicine Service

Happy Monday + welcome to another Medical Mondays and my fourth “Day in the Life” for residency–this time on Inpatient Service!

I was the last of the interns to start inpatient service and my last call day was all the way back in early August. The last time I’d even roamed the floors of our hospital was back in mid-July, so to say that I felt lost and confused when I started hospital service would be a wild understatement.

Day in the Life: Inpatient Family Medicine Service


I got to escape for one afternoon to go to a professionalism conference with my fellow co-interns! :]!

7am – 7* pm

We started each morning off with the night resident and our attending to get sign-out on our patients to see what happened overnight, if we got any new admissions, or if there was anything we needed to look out for (e.g. labs, imaging, consults, social work, etc.).

*Although our shifts were technically 12 hours, 6 days a week, the 7pm end-time for our shift is really just a suggestion, because if you’re not done with your work…you’re basically not leaving, unless you finish all the things that require immediate attention…but then comes the world of discharge summaries and paperwork that follow, so you might as well stay til that’s done so it doesn’t hang over your head. That and I like to avoid getting on the weekly “shame” email for unfinished charting. 😛


We got new mattresses for the call rooms!!! *-*

After we got sign-out in the morning, we’d go round on our patients, put in orders, call and/or play phone tag with consults, check lab and imaging results, talk with the nurses about overnight events, replete labs, figure out a plan of action for the day in regards to our patients.

Depending on how many patients we had and our attending’s rounding style, rounding would generally start at 8-8:30 a.m. and end anywhere between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. We’d spend the afternoon following up on labs/imaging/consults, working on admissions, and updating the sign-out sheets. Please don’t ask me what the difference between internal medicine inpatient + family medicine inpatient is, because I still don’t know. ._.

Inpatient medicine has instilled me with a very deep-seated hatred for pagers. It goes off throughout the day for anything from wrong numbers to admissions from the emergency room, and on weekends, holidays, or after 5 p.m., I also took care of the answering service (any calls that went to the office). My current record is 17 pages within an hour. 😐 donotwant.

I managed to escape after work one evening to run off to Barcade in Jersey City for a family med/internal med get-together! (Free food + games = always a mood-booster.)

RWJ FM at Barcade

The rotation has been pretty draining. I’ve been on the “inpatient diet,” which really just means that I rarely eat throughout the day (not by choice–it just gets super busy). I’ve actually been getting ~10k steps/day in because the hospital’s so big and because i walk to and from work; I’m also learning the system (slowly but surely) and don’t get too lost in the hospital anymore, so I consider this a win.

This week is my last week on service for the calendar year (score!) and I’ve been working with one of our chief residents. I worked with him during my OB rotation too, and he says I work the fastest out of any intern he’s ever seen(?!). Tis a wondrously high compliment and I was super flattered, but there is still a world of knowledge I need to pack into my brain. ._. I hope this means I’ll survive my upcoming 3.5 months of inpatient rotations though?! I guess all those years of self-imposed forced time management and multitasking skills came into handy!


This is how the muffin greets me when I come home and crash in my apartment. :O

  • Do you watch any medical TV shows? They’re all very medically inaccurate, but Scrubs comes the closest to illustrating the life of an intern!
  • Longest work week you’ve ever had? I think I’ve been hovering in the 73-78 hour range, so this is a nice sort of test run for whether or not I’ll live through my winter rotations. I honestly can’t really complain because my friend on surgery has it infinitely worse than I do.
  • Can you tell that I’m not the biggest fan of inpatient medicine? 😛

I came up with this design ages ago for our class t-shirt contest! :]

Permanent link to this article: http://www.fairyburger.com/day-life-inpatient-family-medicine-service/



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  1. Kristy from Southern In Law

    I really loved House M.D but that is definitely NOT accurate in any sense… I’m pretty sure House would have been fired after 0.000001 seconds 😛

    It sounds like inpatient medicine was HECTIC!
    Kristy from Southern In Law recently posted…Recipe: Italian Garlic and Herb Roasted ChickpeasMy Profile

    1. Farrah

      haha, they definitely have a lot of interesting cases on there! (And yeah, he probably would have been instantly fired. x_x)

      It definitely is! Today’s my last day though!! *-* (At least until the next calendar year starts!)

  2. Julie @ Running in a Skirt

    I watch Grey’s Anatomy! Can’t imagine that’s real at all, but I like it.
    Hope you get some food and sleep soon!
    Julie @ Running in a Skirt recently posted…Thanksgiving Weekend 2016My Profile

    1. Farrah

      haha, there’s definitely a tonnn of drama on that show that I never see (which is totally fine by me because what I heard of the last couple seasons sounds pretty catastrophic :[ ).

      Thank you! I really hope so too!
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  3. Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine

    You’ve got this!!! Really…I can feed you…I made cookies yesterday! I have about 50 dessert recipes to be testing in the next like….2 weeks so…come on over!
    Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine recently posted…Cranberry Sauce Quick BreadMy Profile

    1. Farrah

      !!!! Do you still have any left!? I got so happy when I saw this comment earlier this week, haha. Hopefully will see you tomorrow! <3
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  4. ShootingStarsMag

    I really can’t imagine having that long of work weeks. You must be exhausted! That’s an awesome compliment about being the fastest intern though. Sounds like you’re doing well, even if you don’t love it. And awww…your cat! How cute.
    ShootingStarsMag recently posted…Guest Post: Reading Lists for the Hogwarts HousesMy Profile

    1. Farrah

      haha, I’m definitely super super tired. People have been asking if I have any big plans for my one day off and I basically just want to sleep and eat. *-*

      She’s the best to cuddle with, especially these days!
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  5. Mary

    Hello Medical Mondays 🙂 17 pages in an hour would drive me crazy! I see why your not a fan lol. 10K steps that insane! Wow Farrah, you are moving around like a marathon runner. What a great compliment to receive from one of your chief residents. You should be beaming with pride. I love medical TV shows, but I never got into Scrubs, I’ll put in on the list.

    1. Farrah

      It was not a fun time, haha. I’ve basically been forced to embrace the phone out of necessity though, haha.

      Forreals! I was glowing when he said that. Now if only I could cram all the information I come across into my brain and make it actually stick… 😛
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  6. Susie @ SuzLyfe

    Wait, you mean that you don’t call a patient after 40 seconds of CPR? And there aren’t psych attendings just patrolling ERs? What????? You and Alex need to watch a few episodes of Chicago Med and laugh your booties off.
    As much as you don’t like your pager, wait until you have a significant other–they will hate is just as much as you.
    Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Palmetto Bluff Thanksgiving 2016My Profile

    1. Farrah

      hahaha, right?! And we don’t shock em’ when they’re in asystole! (That’s probably my biggest pet peeve. :P) It’d actually be pretty awesome if psych could just chill in the ER; I feel like that’d be rather helpful for lots of scenarios.

      haha, I feel like I’m destined for spinster cat lady status!
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  7. Kaylin@EnticingHealthyEating

    Woah, that’s certainly a way to lose weight fast – be on the “inpatient diet”. Crazy. Every time I read about one of these rotations, I am reminded how amazing you are! Also, muffin is freaking adorable.

    1. Farrah

      haha, that’s definitely one way to look at it! I think I’m damaging my kidneys with this lack of continuous hydration though. And I miss food! (Thankfully I’ve adapted and now stash food in my pockets, haha.)

      Thank you! <3! She and Ninja are the best!
      Farrah recently posted…Ultimate Coffee Date: December 2016My Profile

  8. Ricardo

    Scrubs is definitely the show. I don’t exatcly count that “last” season, but I have the dvd collection somewhere. House gave inspiration to memes such as this: https://youtu.be/WLgg2g0229g

    The longest week felt more like the longest month, cause they usually are. October is known as National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) and it was started by the Federal Department of Labor. So, since we are a government entity that’s funded through DOL, we have to do NDEAM events. Starts with a job fair, then into another job fair, then a couple of Disability Awareness presentations, then staffing more jobs fairs and resource fairs, there’s an annual breakfast that we put on to recognize the Businesses whom we work well with, and then finally multiple workshops. And somewhere in there I have to work with my clients somewhere in between all of that. November is what I personally consider “I ain’t doing a damn thing” month, haha.

    1. Farrah

      I’ve actually only seen a couple episodes (back in October/November of last year with another med student I was living with while we were on our audition rotations, haha), but from what I’ve seen, it’s been pretty accurate (or at least, way more accurate than the other ones)!

      Goodness, that sounds like a crazy month. I’m kinda right there with you in the whole 4-week status part, buttt my last day of inpatient for the calendar year is today!! (Yay!!!) November definitely deserves to be a chill month given all the stuff that happens in October! :O

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