Friday, January 27, 2017


January hours: 9.5

It’s difficult to fathom how fast January has flown by! Our holiday break was very relaxing, and though I enjoyed my time away, I was grateful to be able to spend my first New Years Eve here in New Orleans with my family. It was truly an unforgettable experience of live music and dancing in the rain as we brought in the new year.

In school, we wasted no time diving into new material. We began the semester with the Neurology/CNS block, which has been my favorite block yet of the semester. I have a strong interest in studying and treating behavioral health issues and illnesses as a physician, and New Orleans has a great need for these types of services, as many believe that available mental health services post-Katrina have not fully recovered to pre-Katrina levels. However, even pre-Katrina levels were not adequate to meet the city’s mental health needs, as is the case in many American urban cities.

This week was our first week of the semester at both Anna’s Place NOLA and St. Anna’s Medical Mission, and it was very busy week of volunteering. On Monday, we did student and parent orientation, along with homework assistance and our first dance class. I will continue teaching my two health and nutrition classes on Mondays beginning in February. On Tuesday, we took the students on a field trip to the New Orleans Museum of Art at City Park. This was my second time visiting the museum, but I was able to view and appreciate the art from a new perspective through the lens of the students. Their interpretation of the author’s intent behind certain colors, shapes, and designs prompted me to view the art in a different way. On Wednesday, it was my first day volunteering at the clinic in the new year. I was the sole volunteer for the day, so I was assigned to complete both patient on-take and registration along with conducting the actual blood pressure and glucose exam. It was a fascinating day at the clinic, because I was able to apply what we were learning in the classroom to real-life (i.e. a patient’s abnormally high blood pressure was explained by use of prescribed use of bupropion). Normally, we would have liked to have more than one volunteer at the clinic, but I really appreciated the one-on-one time I was able to spend with the patients, and I hope I continue to get opportunities like this in the future.