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Intern Spotlight

Lu Wu
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Career Goals

"I am interested in getting training in psychodynamic psychotherapy techniques and working with young adult / college-aged students for my career. I envision myself having a balanced work life with time to spend with my soon-to-be-born child and exploration of my interests. "

PGY1 Clinical Rotations:

  • UCSD Hillcrest Inpatient Psychiatry (3 months)
  • VA Inpatient Psychiatry (3 months)
  • Neurology/Child Neurology (2 months)
  • Emergency Medicine (1 month)
  • Inpatient Medicine/Pediatrics (2 months)
  • Outpatient IM/FM clinic with continuity patient panel (half day/wk)
  • Nightfloat/buddy call at UCSD Hillcrest (4 separate weeks)
  • Vacation (4 weeks, 2 or 1 week blocks) 

Average Weekly Hours

On service: ~45-55 hrs/wk
Off service: ~65-75 hs/wk

Night and Weekend Call Duty

  • 4 separate weeks of night float/buddy call with a PGY3 at UCSD Hillcrest (6 nights/wk)
  • 1-2 weekend psychiatry call shifts (12 hr) per month, except no psychiatry call while on medicine or ED rotations (~14 psychiatry weekend shifts total in a year)

Get to know Micah:

Background & Education:
I was born in Australia and since have lived in Hawaii, New Zealand, Connecticut, New Jersey, Massachusetts and most recently Santa Barbara. My parents are both professors – my dad is a professor of art and my mom is a professor of writing and ESL. I was an English Literature major at UC Berkeley, where I lived in the co-ops and was an eager, yet amateur house cook. I took a year off before coming to medical school, during which time I played guitar and sang for patients at the bedside at UCSF Medical Center. Then, it was UCSD for medical school! On arrival to the West Wing inpatient psychiatric unit I was delighted to find they had a guitar and was able to spend some of my free hours in the afternoon playing for patients and nurses, which I continue to enjoy doing now. 

Typical week:

This morning, I sleep in. Then I eat a big brunch of scrambled eggs, ketchup, and sausage (with spinach!) with my fiancé. Then I usually play some guitar and sing. Have some fun: go record shopping, maybe swim in the ocean, ride around the neighborhood on my longboard skateboard or bike. 
Watch a movie (documentaries or movies that are supposed to make you feel something), go for a run through the trails in Balboa Park, and talk with a friend on the phone. At the end of the day, I make sure everything is in place for the morning so I can be efficient and sleep as long as possible. Read before bed.

Wake up at 6am and do some push-ups and squats to make sure that I don't have a zero-exercise day. Then I harass my cat, Blue. I pack my lunch, drink as much coffee as I have time to drink, and bike to work at UCSD Hillcrest (~20 minutes). I arrive on the unit by 7:15am, prep my notes, check in with the nurses, talk with my patients, and round with the team. We have rounds with an interdisciplinary team usually around 9am. 
Finish putting in orders and sign my notes. If I have time, I like to play guitar and sing for the patients on the unit. Then, I find out I have an admission and go visit them in the ED. Our unit is busy and we have many discharges/admissions per day.
Come home, go for a run, listen to an audiobook, eat dinner, go to bed.

Wake up at 6am, get to work via bicycle by 7:15am. I arrive on the unit and accompany my patient to ECT. On Tuesday, we don't have formal rounds, so we "card-flip" – chat about our patients with the attending and chief resident.
Finish putting in orders and sign my notes. Today, I have a later admission so I am the "late stay" resident. This means the other interns sign out their patients to me around 4:30pm (and go home) and I sign out all the patients to the night team at 6pm. 
Bike home, go for a short run, have take-out for dinner (my indulgent go-to is a chicken sandwich spot called Crack Shack).

Wake up at 6am, drink my coffee, work by 7:15am. One of the PGY2s in the Clinical Educator Track gives us a chalk talk on LAIs. Interdisciplinary rounds with my team. My co-intern I share an office with and I go get pick-me-up coffees with our ID cards (we get money for food put on our cards throughout the year). 
Finish up notes, put in orders. Today, I don't get an admission, so I sign out to the "late stay" intern by 4:30pm and head home. 
Tonight, our (very needy outdoor) cat leads us on a slow and meandering walk through the neighborhood. Then I go for a longer run around sunset. For dinner we cook beans, greens, and rice, which is a household stable. Wednesday evenings at 7pm we are lucky to have our intern process group led by the legendary Dr. Groban (currently from home on Zoom).  

We have didactics every Thursday morning from 8am-noon (currently on Zoom, which is nice to be able to attend from home). This week one of our APDs gave a talk on UCSD's SAVE program. We had a group discussion on psychiatrist's reaction to patient suicide and how to get the support you need to fully process/grieve these events. 
Thursday afternoons can be a bit of a scramble trying to get all your work done after a more relaxing morning at home. Arrive on the unit at 1pm, see my patients, "card-flip" rounds with the attending. Sometimes the attending will help out with progress notes here and there when things are busy these days. 
I have been watching "Norsemen" which is hilarious and cheers me up after a busy day. I eat chocolate and try to be in bed by 9pm. 

I drive to work on Friday since I have clinic in the afternoon. See my patients, prep my notes, and interdisciplinary rounds with the team at 9am. I work quickly so that I am able to sign out my patients by noon. I drive to the VA where my clinic takes place. 
I have clinic in the VA Mental Health/Primary Care Clinic where I see three patients who I present to both an internal medicine and a psychiatry attending. These appointments are typically in person, currently transitioned to video and telephone appointments. Clinic wraps up around 4:30pm. 
Tonight, my fiancé and I have a big salad for dinner with boiled potatoes, eggs, and vinaigrette. After dinner, I play Animal Crossing on my Nintendo Switch. Then I have a long and animated conversation with my friend in LA about the oracular qualities of the rapper Future. 

I sleep in super late today. I play a lot of guitar and sing. My fiancé and I eat our first garden harvest of cherry tomatoes. We are still waiting on cucumbers, pumpkin, and black beans. Saturday afternoons I have my own personal therapy. 
In non-pandemic times we like to go to the movies, a concert at The Observatory (we saw Unknown Mortal Orchestra, The Shins, Fleet Foxes, and Punch Brothers most recently), or I'll be dragged to an art show by my fiancé who is a painter 

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