Medical Taster Day at the Northwick Park Hospital

For several years now, Exscitec have organised Medical Taster Days to help students aged 15-17 understand what being a doctor is like and realise the challenges that they will be facing once they apply to medicine.

All I knew when travelling to the hospital Sunday morning was that it would last seven hours and that I was incredibly excited. Upon arrival we were all given booklets, and quite fascinating ones as well; they included information about ECG’s, human anatomy, UKCAT exams and even the personal statement of Dr. Khaki who was our mentor for the day.

Firstly we went over how would we diagnose a patient and found out how perceptive our minds are, to our big surprise a big role of diagnosing is simply looking at a person. Over the course of the day we practiced our CPR skills by role playing emergency situations, read X-Ray scans, learnt how to do sutures and even listened to our own hearts beating with our brand new stethoscopes.

Extremely tired at 16:14 I left the building of the Northwick Park Hospital more reassured than ever that I want to become a doctor. This doesn’t mean that the last 30 minutes weren’t frightening. Not because we saw someone bleeding to death but rather because our mentor told us about how pressuring and competitive the course is. Of course some students immediately started discussing how they’re not sure whether they’re ready to spend minimum of six years studying and then spending sleepless nights at the hospital. However, no matter how overwhelming it seems, I personally, not for a minute doubted my decision.

In my opinion taster days like this one are of extreme use to students in their GCSE and A level years since they give a true insight into what your future life will look like and help to decide whether you are suited for it or not.

By Sofia Plokhova.

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