Wednesday, June 9, 2010

MWU Dental Institute

Here is our very legitimate sign in front of our building. It does the job for now.

A shot taken of the south end of the 3 story, 100k square foot clinic from the top of the parking structure.

Here is a shot of the reception area where we will greet our patients.

Here is the student break room.

Yesterday marked the day that we have all been waiting for. We, the inaugural class of 2012 have made the transition from classroom to clinic, mostly. The Summer quarter has just begun which means we have flown the nest and landed in a slightly larger nest right across the street. Here we have a little more room to stretch our wings.... ok, enough with the bird analogies.

Because we are in the inaugural class, we have not had the opportunity to have a gradual transition into the clinic as most underclassmen have at other dental schools. Also, because our clinic has just been finished, we have not had the chance to sit behind real-live patients in the dental chair. We can drill and fill with the best of them on our "dexters", or simulators, but we had a good time working on eachother.

We started the day at 7am in the large classroom where we had a briefing for the days activities with the clinic director and college dean. We received our bay assignments for the day and were broken down into groups of three students per operatory. We got suited up in all of our riot gear (just our Personal Protective Equipment) of gloves, gowns, masks, loupes, lights and went to work. Some students implemented the paper-rock-scissor ritual to decide on who would fill the "dentist", "assistant", and "patient" positions. We would all get a turn as an assistant, patient, and dentist throughout the day.

First things first.... We role played and entered each other's medical history, consent forms, and dental findings into Axium, our practice management software. We then jumped into perio charting and did a little scaling with all of the hygiene instruments as well as the ultrasonic scaler.

I played the role of assistant first followed by patient, and then dentist. It was a good experience getting into the clinic and practicing interacting with patients and getting the feel of the clinic and the operatories.

We have about two more weeks of clinic experience/surgery and medical lectures to go before we go full time in the clinic.

Another cool thing we did was we learned how to place sutures in our oral surgery course. Rather than draw straws and practice on each other, we were given pig feet to practice on.

Because we are starting to work in the clinic, we have to make sure we are up to date on all of our immunizations etc. I have been getting nasty "non-compliance" emails from the principal's office for about a year now. I figured my chance of contracting TB was pretty low while sitting in the lecture hall for all of second year so didn't pay too much attention to it. Our dean sent out an email saying we couldn't start in the clinic unless we were all up-to-date on our stuff, so I went to the CVS drugstore across the street where they have a little mini-clinic and found I wasn't the only non-compliant dental student at MWU. There were several of us getting our last minute boosters and TB tests done.

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