Medical Assistant Students Host Clinic to Ease Young Children’s Fear of Doctors
Medical Assistant students in the Introduction to Clinical Skills course at Globe University-Appleton know that most children are often afraid of visits to the doctor. They decided to help ease some of these scary thoughts by hosting a “teddy bear clinic” that would show preschoolers at Project Bridges Day Care that they have nothing to fear when it comes to care from a doctor or nurse.
During the clinic, the preschoolers took their teddy bears through six medical stations where they were able to see medical equipment, handle it and practice on their bears. The stations included hand-washing, fake injections with Band-Aids, blood pressure checks/stethoscopes, otoscope/tongue depressor use, thermometer use, height/weight checks, and bandaging.
Medical Assistant Program Instructor Bethany Laak helped students realize that they needed to educate the children about what they might see if they were to go into a hospital or doctor’s office. “Hopefully, they aren’t as afraid now if and when they ever need medical attention.” Laak said.
Throughout the planning process, students knew that they would have to use compassion and care while demonstrating common medical procedures on teddy bears. They were able to explain and demonstrate some basic medical skills like blood pressure readings and hand-washing. The activity also allowed them the ability to practice professionalism and communication with children.
“It’s important for the children to realize that visits to the doctor should not be scary,” Medical Student Donna Flye said, “this experience made a doctor visit fun with hands on interaction.”