Hard to find shadowing experiences?

Hey all again. I am wondering if anyone found as an older premed hard to get shadowing experience?

Any other issues about being taken seriously as an older premed?

Most doctors I have approached have wholeheartedly endorsed the idea, given they have had to do this themselves…

The only issue that I’ve found is that some hospital administrators aren’t so keen on the idea due to concerns about HIPAA violations.

I had a situation where a doctor was willing to let me come shadow him, but the hospital put a stop to it.

At another hospital, they were willing to let me shadow, but I had to provide vaccination records, take some HIPAA training, and provide some other paperwork to do so. It took several weeks to get all that worked out, but it turned out to be a really good experience.

Thanks this is good to know! I appreciate the answers and I’m sure I will have more as I go further into this. Thanks!

The doc I shadowed was so gung-ho about me working with him he bypassed the hospital regulations, and I was sent home pretty quickly.

I had to go through volunteer services for some online training for fed/state/hospital policies then sign a contract that covered the times I was going to be shadowing. In this case, age actually helped me. Apparently they usually treat shadow students as a one time deal, but because I was older and had a direct sponsor, they let me keep it pretty open ended schedule-wise.

Your local hospitals may have a shadow program that will connect you with a doc. In my situation, finding a doc first worked out in my favor.

A youtube channel (StudentDoctor Thompson) I quite like has some useful info on shadowing, here’s the link: http://www.youtube.com/user/sdrthompson/vide os

While shadowing is a great way to “see” what doctors are doing in their daily routine, I would suggest perhaps going further. If you have the time, get some allied health training (medical assistant, CNA, etc.) and see if you can assist them in their work, even if that work is volunteer. This approach was advocated by panels of physicians at several premedical conferences that I have attended. For example, I trained as a medical assistant and phlebotomist. I’ve used that training to assist physicians in physical exams, laboratory work, taking histories, and even chairside assisting in dental care, etc. I’ve also had some surgical training and so I have assisted in surgery. A few weeks ago, I acted as a ophthalmic scrub tech during cataract surgeries. Because of malpractice issues, it may be easier to assist outside the U.S., say on humanitarian medical missions, but I have done such work in the rural and inner city U.S. as well. And, it is a great experience to put on your resume and AAMCAS application.