A Day in the Life of a Resident

A Day in the Life of a Resident


Kelly Buchanan, M.D.

As a psychiatry intern, you’ll rotate through 6 months of psychiatry rotations and 6 months outside psychiatry to supplement and strengthen your general medicine. My first month as an intern was spent on the psychiatry inpatient until at U of L. Typically, I started my day around 7:30 or 7:45, checked on labs and overnight events, and pre-rounded on my patients before treatment team meeting at 9 am. During treatment team, we discussed each patient and plan with the attending, social workers, therapist, and management. After treatment team, we rounded on our patients with the attending, placed orders, made consults, requested transfers, and wrote notes. Two days of the week we had lectures with our fellow psych interns, lead by the chiefs, and once a week academic hour with the psychiatry department and lunch provided. Between the four interns on our rotation, we each carried up to 5 patients, which was perfect as we learned the basics of admissions and discharges. One intern stayed until 5pm for any immediate needs on the unit, otherwise we usually went home around 3-4 pm once our work was finished. During the month, we worked an average of 2 weekends and 2-3 EPS weekday shifts from 5pm-10pm to learn the flow of EPS. After work, I usually went for a run near our house around Seneca Park and spent time with my husband. We liked to take walks around the neighborhood or down to a local ice cream shop which was always a treat! Since I am interested in a Child and Adolescent Fellowship I’ll rotate through outpatient and inpatient pediatrics. This month I’m on outpatient pediatrics and work 8-5 pm with no weekend call. It’s been great to gain exposure to initial psychiatric care from a pediatric standpoint and learn the wide range of typical, healthy pediatric behavior. Both are valued skills I will carry over into my psychiatric practice. Overall, my husband and I have absolutely loved the move to Louisville! There are endless local food options that are delicious, a great music scene with many free or affordable events, and incredible outdoor activities and parks to explore. We are especially looking forward to the beautiful fall colors in Cherokee Park! Regarding the program, I couldn’t be happier with my decision to train at U of L. Thus far, I have loved my training experiences including my fellow residents and faculty. I’m looking forward to the remainder of my training at U of L and time in Louisville!



Courtney Allen, D.O.

During the week, I usually wake up about 6:30am, get ready for the day, and head to work on the inpatient psychiatry unit at UofL by 8am.  I check on my  patients and take care of anything from overnight and get ready for treatment team at 9am.  Some days I do ECT in the morning if one of my patient’s needs it.  During treatment team, we meet with the social workers, nursing staff, and recreational therapist and discuss the plan for each patient for the day.  It’s great to have a multidisciplinary team who I love working with to provide the best care for our patients.  Afterwards, we round on all of our patients with the attending  physician, who loves to teach and give us autonomy to make many of our own decisions regarding patient care.  Afterwards, I usually meet some of my co-residents for lunch in the cafeteria or nearby Panera.  After lunch, depending on the day, I will see a few therapy patients in clinic, go to didactics, or spend the rest of the day on the inpatient unit writing notes, teaching the medical students, and talking more with my patients.  I leave by 5pm and head home.  I recently bought a house that I love in St. Matthews.  It’s about a 15 minute drive from the hospital and has a lot of good shopping, restaurants, and parks nearby.  Some nights, I meet up with friends for dinner at one of the many local restaurants in St. Matthews or the Highlands.  Otherwise, I will cook dinner, walk by dog around the neighborhood, or go for a run at nearby Seneca Park.  



Juan Pablo Galindo, M.D.

As this section is titled "A day In The Life",  my days as a 3rd year resident usually go something like this: I wake up, fall out of bed, drag a comb across my head, I find my way downstairs and drink a cup, looking up I notice I am late... Just kidding (sort of). Shout out to all you Beatles fans out there!  But yes, 3rd year has been wonderful so far, as us 3rd years have transitioned to the outpatient setting of our psychiatric training.  This year, most of my time is spent in the outpatient clinic, however, once a week I see my long-term psychotherapy patients that I have been following since the beginning of 2nd year.  This is a great time for us to continue to hone our psychotherapy skills, which is supported by a weekly meeting with my psychotherapy supervisor.  With him, I discuss my patients and learn more about the techniques of various types of psychotherapy and the intricacies and importance of the patient-doctor relationship.   

 My usual days start off at 7am, when I am awakened by the sound of my dogs greeting my girlfriend home who has just returned from a 6am yoga class (typical Ophthalmology resident).  After drinking a delicious smoothie, I drive 10 minutes to the VA outpatient clinic, usually listening to some late 90's gold to spice up the day ( Ja Rule/Ashanti comparable to Lennon/McCartney? Best believe it).  After arriving to the clinic, I pick up my patient list and see who is on my schedule for the day and then head to our 8:15AM behavioral health team meeting, where we discuss any pressing issues at the clinic.  At 9AM I see my first patient of the day and delve into the work.  Our attending physicians have been great this year in giving us autonomy to make our own clinical decisions, with the right balance of supervision.  Throughout the day, I manage various medication changes based on the patient's clinical picture and quickly realize how much I have retained in the past 2 years.  Around 4PM my supervisor and I go over each patient that I saw that day and discuss/edit plans.  As we go through the clinical stories of each patient, she takes time to teach me and share different approaches or ideas that I hadn't thought about.  To me, this is what makes the work at U of L worth it, as our attendings are always open to teaching and making sure we understand difficult concepts to further our education.   After putting in the last orders of the day, I head home around 4:30PM, listening to some NPR to update myself on the real world events of the day. Psych! (pun intended) I am definitely grooving home to the beats of my first attending, Dr. Dre, windows down, hair flowing.

My girlfriend and I live in Highlands, a beautiful neighborhood lined with elegant trees and old Victorian homes.  Cherokee Park is steps away with unbelievable walking/jogging trails, picnic areas and beautiful scenery. On the other side of the neighborhood is the famous Bardstown Road, where we walk to amazing restaurants/bars and coffee shops.  So far, Louisville has been a wonderful city to train in.  I couldn't be happier with the friendly atmosphere, my awesome co-residents and the fun scene the city provides.  That's saying a lot coming from a California kid :) 



Zachary Sager, M.D.

As a fourth year resident, no day is 'typical'. The one constant is the morning ritual of hand grinding coffee and dog walking, offering a moment to center myself before beginning the day. As I am entering a fellowship in palliative medicine next year, I have spent the last several weeks bouncing around the country interviewing at programs. As the fourth year has the most elective time and most variability rotating at different sites it allows each resident to tailor the year to their own interests.  I have spent a month leading the new residents on one of our inpatient services, with my primary role being teaching and supervision as opposed to direct patient care. I've also spent time at a stand alone private psychiatric hospital working in the inpatient and outpatient setting, a state hospital, and our local hospice organization's inpatient care unit. There I step out of my typical role as a psychiatrist and  manage symptoms of actively dying patients, running family meetings, and providing brief psychotherapeutic interventions to family members and caregivers.

While it may get confusing rotating through varying facilities every month, some aspects stay the same. I attend our weekly didactic conference on Wednesday afternoons, have two hours each week protected for individual psychotherapy supervision, and protected time for my own weekly psychotherapy. As one of my interests is psychotherapy I carry more than the typical half day a week of patients, and see psychotherapy patients on two half days a week.

When not in the clinic or hospital, I take full advantage of all that Louisville has to offer. I regularly practice yoga at our University's gym and local studios, ride on the city's great collection of mountain bike trails, comb the stacks of our local record stores, go to several concerts a month at venues ranging from small clubs to large restored historical theaters, and enjoy the amazing restaurants that our city has to offer.