As a student-run free clinic, the UKSAC depends on you! Apart from serving a population in need, volunteering at the UKSAC will allow you to interact with experienced physicians and gain early clinical experience. The clinic is staffed primarily by M1 and M2 students who serve as floor managers and patient interviewers, but medical students of any year are encouraged to volunteer! During each clinic, there are four student positions available: one floor manager position and three patient interviewer positions. Student volunteers are always supervised by an attending physician. In addition to a great learning experience, volunteering at SAC is a way to help underserved populations in our community.
Jobs and Roles at the Clinic
The three patient interviewing positions are available to M2s, M3s, and M4s as well as M1 students who have floor managed at least once and have completed the Spring training session that focuses on interviewing. The interviewing positions simulate the environment of clinical rotations. You will see the patient alone to obtain the chief complaint, HPI, PMH, family history, and perform a focused physical if necessary. You will then present your patient to the attending physician or resident and come up with an assessment and plan together. You and the physician will then see the patient together before discharging him or her.
Volunteering as an interviewer, especially during the second half of your first year, is really the only opportunity you will have to see a real patient, one-on-one. This experience is invaluable as it not only prepares you for the format of clinical rotations, but it also exposes you to aspects of the medical field that you do not get in the classroom.
On clinic nights, the floor manager is the go-to person for all questions pertaining to labs, referrals, prescription assistance, and general clinic operations; he or she is in-charge! The floor manager arrives at 5:15pm and opens the clinic, organizes patient charts for the evening, and makes sure all exam rooms are ready for use. As the interviewers and physicians arrive, the floor manager orients them to the clinic and the typical procedure. While patients are being seen, the floor manager assists in running labs, tracking pharmacy inventory, providing referrals, and problem solving. At the end of the night, the floor manager files the patient charts, makes sure the clinic is in order, and locks up.
The floor manager is essential to ensure that each clinic night runs smoothly, for he or she is the one person who knows what is going on in all areas of the clinic at any given time. Volunteering as a floor manager allows you to become familiar with the finer aspects of the UKSAC, such as the community health care resources available to low-income patients and how to help a patient obtain a vital medication through prescription assistance. Additionally, volunteering as a floor manager enables you to develop your problem-solving skills and helps you learn to think on your feet. All of these benefits of floor managing cannot be learned in the classroom and will greatly prepare you for your clinical rotations 3rd and 4th year.
The UKSAC sees eight patients per night on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30pm until close (roughly 9:00pm). Patients are seen on a first-come, first-serve basis and may sign up at the front desk of the SA Lodge from 4:30-5:30pm. Typically, we see eight patients per clinic night. Extra patients can be added to the list only if their need is great and the attending physician agrees. The clinic is not well-equipped to deal with emergency conditions, so such cases are referred directly out to local Emergency Departments. All clinic staff—triagers, interviewers, floor managers, and physicians—are volunteers.
Pre-medical students interested in gaining valuable experience interacting with patients are encouraged to apply for the triage position. As a triager, the student will arrive at the clinic at 4:30 p.m. and perform one-on-one intake interviews with registered patients to obtain a variety of information. Students who triage a number of times throughout the year are eligible to apply for floor manager privileges in the spring. Additionally, undergraduate students may be asked to participate in special clinic projects throughout the year. If you are interested in volunteering as a triager, please send the triage manager a message at email@example.com.
Pharmacy students who volunteer at SAC have a unique opportunity to gain experience in not only the dispensing of medications, but also in conducting medication histories and medication counseling. With the help of the pharmacy preceptor, the student is also able to provide the medical students and physicians with medication knowledge,as needed. Each clinic night we have two student volunteer positions available, and we encourage our pharmacy students of any year to participate. If you are interested in volunteering, please email Sarah Arthur at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Social Work Students
Social work students receive real-world experience with patients at the SAC and grow in their skills of assessment and trauma- informed social work. As a social work student, you will perform assessments with registered patients to inquire about housing and financial situations, as well as experiences of trauma, and current state of mind, etc. Participating students volunteer twice a month on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This opportunity also provides volunteers with the chance to improve their skills in inter-professional teamwork, note taking, and community resource knowledge. If you are interested in volunteering as a social work student please contact us via email at email@example.com.