Interest in Occupational Medicine

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Interest in Occupational Medicine

Post by brancato » Wed Aug 06, 2014 2:50 pm

I'm a PGY2 in an internal medicine residency program in Northern CA. I was thinking of moonlighting at an urgent care that does mostly occupational medicine, such as US Healthworks, or something similar. I do not have any specific previous experience in OccMed though, and so I have a few questions:

1. What exactly does one do at an OccMed urgent care? I know obviously we would see work related injuries, but to what extent? Would I be treating serious injuries (my guess is not, they'd have to go to the ER, right?)

2. What kind of procedures should I know how to do? Wrap a joint, dress a wound, suture lacs? (I suppose an even more pertinent question would be, what should I not do!?

3. Can you recommend a text or reference, of common diagnoses and procedures seen in a OccMed Urgent care setting, so I can read and get smart on the matter?

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Robert Swotinsky MD
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Re: Interest in Occupational Medicine

Post by Robert Swotinsky MD » Wed Aug 06, 2014 6:46 pm

Occ med urgent care practices are similar to general urgent care practices but more heavily slanted to musculoskeletal conditions. Plus, about half of what you do are physicals. The most important thing is that you become NRCME certified, see ... /home.seam . This is a qualification that will enable you to do truck driver exams. The requirement for NRCME certification became effective May 2014 and there remains a shortage of certified doctors. If you become NRCME certified, you will be able to do DOT physicals, which may be most common service provided at occ med urgent care practices.

Many of the standard occ med texts are heavily weighted at toxicology and public health. Those are important for certain practices, but not so much occ med urgent care. If you cultivate a mentor who does occ med, he/she can likely help you w/question cases. (Or, post questions to this board!)

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