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How long should you be in practice before you take a student?


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That's nuts. We had an NP two years out precept a student at my ER and thought THAT was too extreme. I had a preceptor in PA school who was a year out and it was not a good experience. She and I were basically learning and figuring things out together. I have been asked by my program to take on students but that feels totally wrong at this point as I've only been out a year and a half... I think I would need at least three years to feel competent enough to teach someone.

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At the critical access hospital I worked at (solo coverage in ER), the facility was a family practice clinical rotation site for UTMB PA students.  We got the wording changed up a few years ago, to allow students to slip over to the ER, to see and do cool things that they would have had to fight with physician interns and residents to do at the bigger hospitals (sutures, I&Ds, other minor procedures).  They loved the experience.  I enjoyed the teaching aspect of it.

That said, it's not something that an inexperienced provider should be doing, when they aren't proficient at it themselves.  I sure as heck wouldn't take on the role of precepting a student in an area that I didn't feel comfortable in myself.  It's a disservice to the student to not get proper training.  "See one, do one, teach one" has its limitations.

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