Life as a Trainee doctor

Life as a Junior doctor

A working day of a junior doctor can be any of the following

a) normal day

This will be working from 8.30 to 5.30PM You pick up patients from the day before. liaise with the nurses for any progress, and then start ward rounds. There may be a consultant board rounds at 10 AM where all patients are discussed. This is followed by routine ward work, procedures, discharge summaries taking bloods etc.You will generally have to see about 12 – 24 patients. If there is the full complement of doctors , you may get an opportunity to have held the day off to attend clinic/ do audits or study for your examinations

b) on call day (9AM to 9.30 PM)

You will start the day at 9 AM and attend handover usually on the Acute medical Unit (AMU) This will focus on patients who have not been well or have a procedure or job to be completed. You will then either take GP calls, clerk patients (take history examine and plan management of acute admissions). In busy hospitals, you may be expected to see unto 10 – 12 patients over 12 hours, with the whole on call team clerking in excess of 50 patients. As senior on call (senior clinical fellow) , you may be expected to provide advice for other specialities. Weekday on calls usually come one at a time. Weekends are three on the trot (friday, saturday and sunday)

c) Night on call (9 PM to 9.30 PM)

This is exactly the same as above but you start the night at 9 PM and work till 9.30 AM the next day. There may be an out of hours team to help with routine jobs like fluid prescription, re-siting venflons etc. There will be an on call consultant off site for help if required. These will be in blocks of weekday nights (4 – Monday night to thursday night) or weekend nights (3 – Friday saturday and sunday).

d) Off day ( Zero day) 

This is an off day given in compensation for the extra time you work on call during the week. This usually works out to 3 – 5 days for a full 14 shifts (7 long days and 7 long nights). You can choose to be completely free or come in for educational sessions as you choose (e.g. attending clinics)