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First Aid for Third Year Clerkships at JMC

Orthopaedics Clerkship at duPont


How did you get there? What is the IDEAL way to get there (if different)? If you took public transportation how much did it cost?
  • You have to drive each morning, although carpooling is an option. Take 95S to 202N and follow the signs to the hospital.
  • The drive is roughly 35 minutes in the morning and up to an hour in the evening. Give yourself extra time to get settled and make it to lecture.
  • Parking is free.


If you lived away from campus, how was the housing?
  • Housing not offered.
Food: Was it paid for? Were there free lunches? Did you get meal vouchers when you were on-call?
  • Food was not paid for except for an occasional conference, but the food at AIDHC is relatively cheap.


How were the 3 weeks divided up? What are the teams or the options for the rotations?
  • This 3 week surgical subspecialty is spent with the orthopedic surgical team (residents are affiliated with Jefferson and other medical schools). You will have the opportunity to observe orthopedic procedures such as spinal fusions, arthroscopic knee and shoulder surgeries, deformity correction, and tumor removal. On days not in the OR, you will be seeing patients in the office or cast room.
Are you able to request what you want?
  • Two students are on the team per 3-week block. You will be assigned to work one week each with Dr. Gabos and Dr. Shah. The third week you can choose an attending to work with for the day.


Did you have lectures/didactic sessions at your rotation site? How often? How long? Do you feel like they were as well organized as the lectures at Jeff?
  • There is a lecture on a pediatric orthopedics topic each morning at 6:45. Do not show up late, as the fellows will take note. One day a week there was a joint conference where residents presented x-rays from the cases of the previous week for analysis. There is typically an article discussion once every two weeks. Ask one of the residents what articles are being discussed and look them up.
Did you give a presentation? Were you required to do so?
  • Students looking for high honors are given the opportunity to do a 10-minute presentation on a topic of their choice.


What were your hours (roughly)?
  • Approximately 6:45 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Did you get off on major holidays, or were you expected to be there (i.e. Labor Day, Thanksgiving & Friday after Thanksgiving)?
  • Yes. The team is pretty flexible about scheduling.
What was the call schedule? Were you able to pick your nights or trade with peers?
  • No Call. Students attempting to earn high honors are required to take call once.
In the Hospital, did you feel a part of the ‘team’? Did residents/attendings appreciate you?
  • It depends on the attending and residents. You don’t write notes on the patients you see, but just typically tag along on rounds. You need to be assertive to allow yourself the opportunity to see patients and present them in the office. If you have a strong interest in orthopedics and don’t mind the extra work, ask if you can write a note and see the patients you have treated in the OR.
How was the teaching by attendings?
  • Depends on the attending. Remember proper OR etiquette, but it is good to ask appropriate questions. It pays to look up the procedure you are watching the night before. Most questions directed at you will be anatomy related, so know your stuff. Drs. Shah and Gabos will take time to show you the anatomy or answer questions. Dr. Thacker is an exceptional teacher who will take the time to show you things and ask you questions. Dr. Bowen is also a great teacher, but moves at an exceptional pace in the OR, so prepare.


  • Brush up on OR skills (i.e. suturing, sterile technique) and read up on the anatomy of the case the night before. This will not only prepare you for the case but may help you to answer questions posed by residents/attendings.

Last revised: 01/12

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