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Alaska Native Medical Center Aug/Sept 2012

I just got back from a month at ANMC in Anchorage.  I did 2 weeks of hospitalist and 2 weeks of outpatient clinics.  Like previous posters have said, you see a lot of cancer and alcohol-related complications on the inpatient side.  And it’s true that you can get exposure to EGDs and doing treadmills, if you like those kinds of things.  You can pretty much see whatever you want, in terms of procedures or surgeries and whatnot since the place is small enough and the staff are very accommodating.

I’d like to put in a plug for the outpatient experience, since not many people have posted about that thus far.  You rotate through different clinics everyday, including a combined rheum/pulm connective tissue disease clinic (where you see more scleroderma with interstitial lung disease than you have ever seen in your life), GI clinic, hepatitis clinic, general medicine.  The outpatient attendings are all great teachers and excited to have us there.  The patients are great, appreciative, and come from very interesting places.

Aside from the clinical experience, the rotation is very well-organized with great support from the coordinators.  They give you a long weekend so you can go explore Alaska.  I made it to Seward for a glacier/wildlife tour and also to Denali National Park.  I don’t know if I was unlucky with the weather but by the second week of September there were more rainy days than sunny ones.  But no matter what the weather, the Alaskan wilderness is majestic.

Just make sure you have one of those nice cameras with the big lens if you want to take good pictures of wildlife.  You don’t want to have to be too close to a grizzly.

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