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Lisa Breyner Clinical Elective (Fächergruppe 3) 0433349 UMKC – EMERGENCY PSYCHIATRY, Kansas City My clinical elective in Kansas City Last summer I had the amazing opportunity of spending a four week elective program at the "Emergency Psychiatry" Department in Kansas City. It was definitely one of the best placements I’ve ever had. Since I have family in Kansas City, I was able to stay with them and therefore I can’t say anything about the apartments that are offered to students from abroad by the hospital. The morning of the day my placement started, I met with Jacqueline Ware-Sod, a very nice secretary I had been in touch with before I went to the States. She explained everything about my placement to me and showed me around the hospital grounds. I got an account for the computer, an ID and lots of warm and welcoming encouraging words. Around noon, I was welcomed by the Head of the Psychiatry Department, who seemed very excited about having a European Med Student in his program. He showed me around the department and introduced me to my supervisors, Dr. Padma Krishnamurthi from India and Dr. Usama Mabrouk from Egypt, who are in charge of the Emergency Psychiatry. Right away I was impressed with how multi-cultural the staff was, and it made it very easy for me to fit right in. But something else caught my eye: the security. I had never been in a hospital with metal detectors and armed security before. It was very exciting. After receiving another ID badge that got me through security, I started work. Since Kansas City is known for its high percentage of drug abusers, the cases we got were mainly drug related. It was my first elective with Psychiatry and I enjoyed it very much. The patients´ cases were very interesting and there were lectures I could attend twice a week. I was very involved in the daily routines and soon became part of the team. The staff was friendly and very helpful and I got along great with doctors, nurses and security. I learned a lot about psychiatric patients and how to deal with them. Every morning I started work at around 7:30 in the morning and stayed till 3:30 p.m.. I pretty much had the same tasks as the residents – talking to new patients and, with my supervisors´ consent, deciding whether to keep them as inpatients of the Lisa Breyner Clinical Elective (Fächergruppe 3) 0433349 UMKC – EMERGENCY PSYCHIATRY, Kansas City psychiatric ward, move them to a different department, send them to a half-way house, find them social workers to support them or just release them and – if necessary – find the right medication for their treatment. For me, the elective was very interesting and rewarding. I learned a lot about psychiatric diseases, especially drug-related ones, and met some very “special” people. (On my first day at the Emergency Psychiatry Department, I met a patient in the hallway. She stared at me and then said: “God told me he doesn´t like your haircut!” – I kept the haircut!) Also, Kansas City is an amazing city with lots of great events. I got to see my first Major League Baseball Game, a Michael Bublèe concert, a musical and a couple of parades. I would definitely recommend this elective to everybody who loves combining studying with travelling and getting to know new people. On that account, I would like to thank the people in charge of elective programs abroad (especially Christina Schönbacher). Thank you very much for making this trip possible! If I could, I would do it again this year!!!!
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