[POLL] Internship Applications: Which Factors Do You Consider?

One of our classmates made this... and this date-count is from a few days ago...!

One of our classmates made this… and this date-count is from a few days ago…!

There are fewer than 200 days left to graduation, and my class is beginning the application process for our Internship positions next year. As Interns we will be the most junior of doctors, and to some extent still be considered to be “in training”, BUT we will be graduates earning real money (and with real responsibilities) – wahoo!

We don’t have a big program like the Match in the USA/Canada. Instead, we have to list our top five choices for Internship, with as many “motivating” factors as possible (people with kids and spouses in the area tend to get preference) and hope for the best. Each hospital has only a certain number of spots available for students from each med school, so it’s quite a strategic things as well.

If you don’t get placed in one of your first five choices, you get “second rounded” – and those are usually the spots left open that other people didn’t want. So the ideal is to avoid that scenario. Continue reading

Doctors and Piercings: Two Years Later


Just over two years ago, I had my nose pierced.

It was the end of my third year of medical school, and I preceded my action by seeking advice from many people – I spoke to my family, mentors and other students, and I posted this and this.

I never did post that I got the piercing. I guess it did not seem like massive news then. But I’ve been seeing a lot of searches for “doctors and piercings” directing to my blog, and I figured a follow-up was in order.

piercing_med Continue reading

Africa Needs More Books


I was walking through my home suburb (read:village) with my brother the other day. We went to the local library, sampled some books (slim pickings) and as we walked home, I asked about such-and-such a bookshop, and such-and-such a used bookshop. They were all closed down. Anyone wanting to purchase books needs to go to town (literally). A town which, incidentally, has only generic chain bookshops.

And I said to my brother, “This place needs more bookstores.”

And then, “Our country needs more bookstores.”

And then, “Africa needs more bookstores.”

morebookstores3 Continue reading

Should We Get Involved?


I recently read The Ask and The Answer by Patrick Ness. It’s the second book in the Chaos Walking Trilogy, which I quite like. The story line has very little to do with medicine, but in this book there is a lot of focus on the healers – basically, female doctors. As the book progresses battle lines are drawn and people have to choose sides – except, as in any war, some don’t want to choose sides.

One of these is a young apprentice-healer who believes that the resistance is doing as much harm as those in power. At one point, Viola (female protagonist) asks her why she won’t fight. She says,

Nurse_US_Navy_recruitment_poster Continue reading