UAB SOM Pediatric Clerkship

The Junior Student Clerkship in Pediatrics, Birmingham Campus, is an eight week rotation which takes place during the third year of the medical school curriculum. This rotation is designed to expose the student to in-patient and outpatient pediatric problems and principals of health care maintenance.  The program is divided into two four week periods, which are designated respectively the Inpatient and Outpatient.

Philosophy: Pediatrics is a primary care subspecialty of medicine, the primary concern of which is the comprehensive and continuing care of children. The basis of Pediatrics resides in an understanding of the growth and development of the human organism as it proceeds from birth to adulthood. Pediatrics is, therefore, not an organ-based specialty but one which evaluates the child, both in health and disease, in terms of developmental physiology and its relationship to both family and society. Education within Pediatrics is patient related and interactive. The student must learn that infants and children are different from adults in their responses to both the environment and to disease. By understanding the child in terms of developmental biology, psychosocial development, and cognitive development, the student will begin to appreciate that area of medicine which is Pediatrics. In dealing with children, the students in Pediatrics will have an opportunity to truly influence the future.

Clerkship Goals & Objectives:

The overall goal of the Pediatric Jr. Student Clerkship is to expose the student to an environment in which excellence in pediatric patient care, teaching, and research stimulates the student to explore the health care needs of well and ill children. Although the eight week clerkship period will expose the student to a wide variety of pediatric problems, the clerkship is by no means a comprehensive program of pediatric education. It is planned that during the clerkship period the student will be exposed to methods of inquiry which will allow the student to approach and research problems of infants, children, and adolescents, which they might not have been exposed to during the clerkship. During their pediatric rotation, the Junior Medical Student is expected to become familiar with many of the ethical and moral issues involved in caring for children, to include a recognition of child abuse and the requirement for every physician to remain a child advocate.

Objectives
  • To develop a method of care for well and acutely and chronically ill children which recognizes the child as an individual within the context of the family unit and the community. Within this context, the student should understand the services available in the public and private sector to meet the needs of children, and the need for the physician to be an advocate for the child within this same context.

  • To use problem oriented pediatric history and physical examination to develop clinical assessment, differential diagnosis, and planned approach for specific pediatric problems encountered.

  • To understand that children are individuals within a particular family unit, and that variations in cultural background of families will influence their understanding and approach to both health care and illness. This will require that the student develop techniques of educating and communicating with patients and families which considers the context of each individual's circumstances.

  • To understand that evaluation of childhood health as well as disease depends on the stage of growth and development of the child.

  • To become familiar with common pediatric illnesses and appreciate their relative prevalence within individual populations.

  • To utilize previously learned human biology to understand the clinical problems encountered during childhood.

  • To understand the basic concepts of childhood growth and development and use that information to obtain the skills necessary to work with and evaluate children at all stages of physical and psychosocial development.

  • Recognize that pediatrics is a field of preventive medicine, the goal of which is to maintain health by preventing illness, as well as caring for illness once it occurs (immunization practices, injury prevention, nutrition, ETC).

  • Learn the indications for common pediatric procedures including laboratory evaluations, radiologic evaluations, lumbar punctures, intramuscular injections, and other common pediatric procedural techniques.

  • To learn the leading causes of death among children, including the impact of infant mortality.

  • To learn to question that which the student does not understand and to develop a format for finding the answers to those questions.

  • To develop a life-long approach to learning and information acquisition which will aid the student in future problems.

UAB SOM Goals & Objectives


Schools with an UASOM affiliation agreement:

Germany: Leipzig University (3 months)
Korea, South: Yonsei University Wonju College of Medicine
Peru:  Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Peru
Switzerland: Zurich, The University of Zurich Medical Faculty (3 months)
Taiwan:  Chung Shan Medical University