This one-on-one learning experience connects first- and second-year medical students with physicians from rural Alberta. Students have the opportunity to follow a rural physician for a portion of a weekend to experience the diverse range of skills involved in practicing rural medicine. Shadowing experiences are funded through the Alberta Rural Physician Action Plan (RPAP).
The shadowing program attempts to increase the rural exposure that many medical students felt their early medical education was lacking. The program gives careerists an opportunity to shadow a physician for a weekend on call to experience what rural medicine has to offer.
There are approximately 50 rural sites involved in the program. From these sites, more than 150 physicians are willing to have a medical student shadow them. There has been very positive response from preceptors and students who have participated in previous years.
Medical students in their first or second year may use this experience as a 12-hour elective. The application process can be found on UME’s Rural Shadowing & Skills Application webpage. Approval must be gained from the UME and the Office of Rural & Regional Health before the shadowing experience takes place or credit will not be granted.