There’s more to building clinical skills than experience with differential diagnosis, recording medical histories, or doing physical examinations. Developing character traits and how to effectively interact with patients is an equally important part of any clinical experience. And as Aseel discovered, the right doctor can make all the difference.

Keep reading below for Aseel’s full AMO story!


Clinical Skills in Compassion

My two months hands-on experience in internal medicine has opened my eyes!

Shadowing Dr. M was illuminating. He tried so hard to make us feel confident while talking to the patient and gave us enough time to take histories and do physical examinations. He also never forgot to discuss the results that we came out with. He provided us the last updated guidelines for the management and diagnosis of the diseases.

Dr. M.’s clinic was visited by many patients a day. While I had many meaningful encounters, one in particular stands out. One day at the clinic, I noticed a child roaming the corridors. His mother was experiencing shortness of breath and he was holding her hands tightly like he wanted to transfer this pain out of her body. After we did the necessary medical management and her breathing had improved, the child started to hug and thank us for what we had done. I could not forget that moment, seeing Adam’s smiling face, and I realized that my future must revolve around instances like this one. True fulfillment comes from helping another person heal.

My experience at Dr. M.’s clinic taught me that patience and compassion are just as crucial as scientific skills for medicine.

I have to admit that I thought it wouldn’t be easy at the beginning, especially as a girl with Hijab, but I put my fears away once I found out how kind the people that I am around are and supportive of my determination to achieve my goal. This would be the ideal balance between an intellectual and personal challenge. I really enjoy the idea of being able to service a community while helping improve the health of people of all ages and believe this would greatly contribute to the lifelong personal and professional satisfaction I would derive from medicine.

My ambition to apply for NRMP program has increased since I did the rotation, as we all know how it’s important for IMGs to have a medical experience in U.S. to fulfill the requirements for residency. Not only am I glad that I had the chance to have one, but to also have an LoR written by the physician at the end of the rotation was like a gift for me.

I wish I could write more and more just to describe this unforgettable experience but it is just one station of my long trip and the only real thing I know is that I won’t give up on my dream till I reach the moon.

As my grandma says “if you couldn’t reach the moon with hard work and persistence, certainly you will be among the stars.”