As most students will agree, waking up in the morning in time for university can be one of the hardest things to do, and even when you wake up on time you still crave more sleep. Therefore waking up at 7:30am on Monday mornings can be a struggle at times. After hitting snooze a few times, I get ready and pack my bag with my tunic, clinic trousers and black shoes ready for clinic. At Cardiff Metropolitan University we have a clinic on the Llandaff campus where patients come to be treated by students on the BSc Podiatry course.
Clinic is due to start at 10am, however students are required to be in 15minutes early to set up and ready to treat patients at 10am. Although I have the privilege of owning a Met-Rider Card (an exclusive card available to Cardiff Met students who pay for it, which allows you to catch any bus at any time for the whole academic year) I get a lift from a colleague who lives close to me. Leaving home at 9:15am, we arrive close to the Llandaff campus, park the car and walk the rest of the way.
After getting changed into my clinic clothes, I go into the clinic area and prepare the cubical where I will be working. My Monday clinics are divided into two sections, the first is the morning in which I treat patients with musculoskeletal problems. These patients present with problems such as pain within muscles. Each patient is assessed both subjectively and objectively and after the a diagnosis has been made a tutor will double check the work we have done and if they agree the patient will be discharged and asked to return when they need to. However if the patient needs insoles these can be made at the clinic for the patient to take home and return for a review in about 4 weeks. There are roughly about 12 to 18 patients distributed between 8 students in the morning sessions.
The morning session lasts 3 hours therefore we go on lunch at 1pm for an hour. The second section of my Monday session is the afternoon and also lasts for 3 hours. In this section I will be in general clinic, this clinic has patients presenting with more general podiatric problems which can range from nail care to verruca and athletes foot. I am expected to treat at least one patient an hour – so about 3 patients in the afternoon session. In this session the most common treatments are nail cutting for the elderly, or those with injuries and are no longer able to reach their feet and debriding hard skin.
There is a rewarding feeling associated with leaving clinic at 5pm as I know I have helped people that day, this is what motivates me when waking up early in the morning. I get a lift back home from my colleague and the first thing I do is make some food as I am normally starving! Then I relax with my house mates for a few hours before heading off to bed to go over my notes for the following day.
To find out more about the Podiatry course and facilities at Cardiff Met, see the video below: