News & Events

Dietetic interns at UW begin on-site clinical rotations

Graduate students in the University of Washington Graduate Coordinated Program in Dietetics began on-site clinical rotations in January, after receiving eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccination in December from UW Medicine, along with other UW students, postdocs, staff, and faculty members who work in a clinical setting.

Kazue Yoshida, an MS student and dietetic intern at UW just after receiving her first of two doses of the Pfizer vaccination this month. Yoshida began her internship as a dietetic intern at UWMC-Montlake this quarter.

Anne Lund, director of the GCPD, says that this quarter marks the first experience for many of her students being on a clinical floor, and for some is the first time being around other people in nine months.

“Starting this quarter, my 2021 interns transitioned from didactic learning in the virtual classroom, to working full time in a variety of internship sites, including the clinical floors. I am thankful that we were able to offer this year’s interns the vaccine before they started on the floors.”

As students in the UW School of Public Health, dietetic students were conscientiously following the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” orders from the Washington Department of Health, and policies set by the University when the pandemic began in early 2020.   

UW Medicine has allowed students to complete their clinical rotations on-site since May 2020, but with strict safety procedures in place.  

Students who were permitted to work on-site this past year have adhered to  guidelines which include attesting daily to being symptom free, universal masking in the building, maintaining 6 feet of physical distance, and not entering rooms of patients with a COVID-19 diagnosis, or are under investigation for COVID-19.  

Allie Serioussi
Allie Seroussi, an MPH Nutrition student, who also received the COVID-19 vaccination began her internship this quarter at the Department of Health and will complete clinical rotations within UW Medicine soon. 

“I was thankful we could offer them the vaccine before asking them to leave their living rooms to report to daily work on the hospital floors,” said Lund.

Lund has been impressed with the leadership shown by Tim Dellit, the Chief Medical Office of UW Medicine and his entire team in distributing the vaccine.

“All UW Health Science students on clinical rotations within UW Medicine facilities were incorporated into their prioritization plans for the COVID-19 vaccination of their healthcare personnel.  They made time to answer my logistical questions and their weekly UW Medicine Town Hall webinars have helped me understand how this pandemic is affecting the clinical training experiences of my students,” said Lund.

Lund adds, “Running a clinical internship during a pandemic has been challenging, but somehow, we’ve managed to graduate our 2020 cohort on time, and our 2021 interns are on schedule to do the same.”  UW Medicine began distributing COVID-19 vaccinations to those who were eligible in mid-December based on guidance and coordination of the vaccine supply by the Washington State Department of Health (WA DOH).

February 11, 2021