A Plea to Fellow Students

Charles Litch, OMS IV

As a fourth-year student who has been through the wringer that you all are going through right now, I want to start out by saying “I get it.” Didactic years are hard. COVID is frustrating, to say the least. The science and recommendations are in constant flux. I get it.

But, as a plea I feel safe in making on behalf of all of our students in the clinical world, please follow best practices for COVID precautions as much as you possibly can, even if the recommendations seem overbearing or abundantly cautious.

Clinical education is not only typically more enjoyable than the grind of didactic years, it is crucial. I’m sure you all understand that. We cannot control every aspect of this pandemic, nor how our network of medical institutions will make decisions. But we can uphold the highest standard of personal protection and behavior, even as it might seem overbearing at times.

Our relationship with the clinics and hospitals that accept our students is precious. For better or worse, the reality is the reputation that follows each of us individually as we walk into a hospital or clinic goes no deeper than the RVUCOM emblem on the shoulder of our (short) white coats. I’m sure you all understand this, but it doesn’t hurt to get a little reminder.

I believe in all of us that we can heed the advice of our school administration and COVID Response Team to make the best choices possible going forward.  We can’t always control the hand we’re dealt. But life is all about how you react to the situation at hand. I’m sure we will all have some interesting stories to tell our grandkids in the future. 

Happy to hear from anyone if you want to reach out. 

Take care, 

Charlie

PS. Coming from someone currently rotating in an ICU with COVID patients, you don’t want this thing. In case you needed one more reminder. 

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