The next two weeks of term introduced us to the three long term projects we will be undertaking this year, one on research in action, on based in medical humanities and one about doctors as teachers. For the doctors as teachers project we can do anything we like, but we were allocated themes for the other two.
My research in action project is working with a team at the University looking at new biomarkers for sepsis. They are working on the premise that maybe sepsis is like cancer, and there are different types. You wouldn't treat all cancer the same way and maybe that is why sepsis treatment doesn't have brilliant outcomes. They are working on ways to differentiate between different types of sepsis, whether there are any biomarkers that predict certain outcomes or complications, and whether there are ways to tell who is more susceptible to it. At some point this year we get to go into their lab and use lab techniques to get data of our own and then we have to present it in poster format and write a research proposal for future research ideas. I passed the first part which was a presentation of a literature review into the topic.
My medical humanities is looking at music, the brain and medicine. I am a fairly musical person, sort of. I like singing, and have always sung in theatre groups and choirs since I was very small. That said, I cannot read music, I don't know any music theory, and I don't have that much confidence in my singing ability, but it does make me happy so I persist. We are on to a winner here! I am hoping to approach and expert patient group of some form and teach them a simple song that will sound quite impressive for an afternoon. I am hoping that the act of singing in a group will make some of them at least happy, the way it does me. Fingers tightly crossed. I have to come up with something to display at a conference later on in the year and write a technical or reflective essay about the topic.
This leads me nicely on to Doctors as Teachers. I figured, since I was teaching something for my medical humanities, I'd just tweak that a bit and focus on my teaching style and specific techniques. I have to make a resource, display something at a conference and keep a portfolio of my teaching exploits and reflections.
It should be quite interesting, albeit a fair amount of work. I'm quite nervous, as these things will require me to be much more extroverted than I normally am, but hopefully they will all work out in the end.