Primary Care Outpatient Rotation at SF Free Clinic:
Information for Medical Students and Residents
Since its founding in 1993, SFFC has been a primary care rotation site for both medical students and residents. Half of the clinic's formal mission is to provide educational opportunities for future medical practitioners, so teaching remains a huge part of the clinic's identity to this day.
Fourth-year Medical Students and Residents who have rotated at the Free Clinic have given this rotation rave reviews. Some features that they particularly like include:
1) There's a great combination of autonomy and teaching.
This is often the first outpatient rotation in which fourth-year students feel like they are taking on the primary responsibility for their patients, and it is formally a sub-internship rotation in outpatient medicine for medical students. However, the schedule is set up so that attending physicians have extra time to provide adequate oversight. We are looking for the sweet spot of giving trainees the independence to be their patient's doctor, while still getting the teaching that will help stretch them to the next level.
2) The attending physicians love to teach.
Most of our physicians are UCSF-trained and rotated through our clinic as students or residents, and they *love* the opportunity to educate the next generation of physicians (whether or not they may be going into primary care).
3) Cases are varied and interesting.
We practice bread-and-butter primary care here: healthcare maintenance well exams, management of metabolic syndrome/hypertension/diabetes, along with a good variety of musculoskeletal injuries, GYN concerns, GI illnesses, endocrine diseases, dermatology, ENT/ophtho concerns, etc. While we are purposefully NOT an acute care center, we do also see our share of interesting sub-acute care cases, enough to keep our monthly clinical rounds quite interesting.
4) Patients really appreciate the care they receive at SFFC
It's really gratifying to serve such an underserved patient population.
5) The clinic ancillary staff is very supportive of rotating trainees.
Our support staff are among the best. Many have been at the clinic for a very long time – they are amazing at what they do, and they *love* working with trainees.
6) There are also additional educational opportunities within this rotation:
- Diabetes Clinic Monday mornings
- Shadowing Dr Richard Gibbs at the San Francisco Ballet clinic
- Bimonthly Clinical Rounds and M&M with Dr Daniel Chrobak
- Other didactic sessions (e.g. musculoskeletal exam, weekly Morning Report)
- Shadowing the dietitian, social worker, or patient medication advocate
If you are a medical student or resident interested in rotating through our clinic, please have your medical school or residency program inquire on your behalf with Paula Martin, our clinic manager.