As I come to a half-way point in my internship, I enjoy on reflecting how much I have learned in only one month. To start off, I had a change of internship and hospital location, which required me to keep an open mind and be adaptable. Once I starting to settle, in my new internship, I was able to continue to try to reach the same goals I made for myself in the beginning. I now am working with multiple types of physicians and learning about their specialties.
In terms of my previous goals, I am still trying to understand the Thai health care system. I work at a veterans hospital, so most of the patients get free health care from the government. When comparing to the US health care system, everything in Thailand is very similar because their healthcare system is all in English, and they use the same equipment as we do in the US. A major difference in the Thai healthcare system would be their leniency in terms of protocol in the hospital and the lack of newer technology due to finance. Furthermore, Thai healthcare sometimes incorporates more natural therapy such as acupuncture or thai massage rather then going straight to medical treatment. I have drawn many parallels to American health care system and it is interesting to understand the influence of America in the medical world. The doctors only speak Thai to the patients but all the medical records and documentation is in English, so doctors and nurses need to be fluent in Thai and English. However, many Thais are shy to speak English.
For my future goals, I would like to improve on my ability to take initiative when learning about a topic. I have been fortunate to learn about many diseases and technological terms, but sometimes I do not really know what they mean. I want to improve my medical knowledge and vocabulary through my own research. I also want to work on my patience because Thai people have a lot more patience than Americans do, and I think it is a trait that is critical to being in the medical field.
In terms of being in Thailand, I am still in the process of achieving the goal to learn as much about the culture as possible. Lately, I have been going to a Buddhist library and reading books on Buddhism and trying to understand its influence on Thai society. I had an incredible opportunity to meet a British monk who answered all my questions about Buddhism in Thailand. Every day I learn something new about the culture, and I am excited for many more days to be in this country.