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For 30 days and 30 nights...

The nightmare of interning at a hospital:
The day our postings were put up, I was thrilled to find my name on the list saying " Ruby Hall Clinic". Well, its always quite different before the storm, they say. With content I went there, along with six others from our batch, only to find the sick smell of food and phenol lingering around mee, at least all through the first day, or was it the first week?....I don't care to remember. Of all the wards, I had to get the "k" ward...terror in disguise. Along with being the largest among the semiprivate wards, its also the toughest, being the "renal" ward, where people with transplants and kidney failures are usually admitted. For the uninformed, this ward is tough to deal with, esp. if you are an undergraduate nutritionist.
Along with work pressure, death is a common sight, where one has to toughen up to see the patient one has dealt with the previous morning lie dead. Visitors are usually not allowed, for sterile reasons, so there is patient- attendant relationships which are constantly formed and broken. Being there initially, I must add, took something away from me which lay deep down inside. I learnt to look at individuals differently. I started categorizing ppl as -healthy and non-healthy.
After being done with K , for a gruelling week , I was sent to the 'SR4', that being a deluxe ward, with AC -TV-and the works. Here, along with pain, I found money talking. I saw patients being residents there for 3 yrs, I saw relatives hoping for their family member to die, for property sake, I saw an aged couple being looked after a 'bai' with their children minting cash in the States. I saw stuff which toughens people for life ahead. No rosy-tinted pictures, the real deal.
What followed for me was the NTU(Neuro-Trama-Unit), where Road Traffic Accident patients with Head Injuries are admitted. Life there usually dwells around tube feeds and the ones who care willing to give anything just have a look at their loved ones. And I standing in between looking at desperation on one side of the door, and determination to survive on the inside.
When my time there ended, with vivas done, case studies completed and reports submitted, I wondered what else did I gain along with experience in my work field? Did I learn something other than practical therapeutic diet principles....I really hope so!

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