For one pre-med student, a childhood history as a patient at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital and the positive memories from that time brought the spark to pursue a career in medicine.
Though Paul Adkins began to explore possible career paths during high school, you could say that he got his start on the road to a career in medicine as a patient at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital.
“Because of my experience I was always interested in medicine,” says Paul, now a sophomore at Florida State University. “I shadowed a few surgeons while in high school and I found it really interesting.”
Shortly after his second birthday, doctors diagnosed Paul with chronic asthma and he began to develop frequent ear and sinus infections. A year later, his doctors discovered that he had a specific immune deficiency that put Paul at an increased risk for infections and complications from illness. Something as simple as the common cold could have been very serious. For the next several years he would depend on care from the experts at Johns Hopkins All Children’s to keep him as healthy as possible.
Keeping Paul healthy was a task that required a myriad of appointments. Sometimes a trip to the main campus in St. Petersburg was needed, but often Paul was able to receive care at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Outpatient Care, Sarasota near his home. The convenient child-friendly location and caring staff helped make the experience less frightening.
“The nurses were always very nice and compassionate,” notes Paul. “I remember feeling safe and enjoying everyone on the medical team.”
By the time Paul started elementary school, his visits to Johns Hopkins All Children’s were becoming less frequent. Today, Paul’s asthma attacks, ear infections and immune system issues are little more than memories of the past. Though he still has to take some precautions for asthma, he enjoys spending his free time playing the drums, skateboarding, and of course, preparing for a future career in medicine.
“The team at Johns Hopkins All Children’s not only saved my life, but also gave me the inspiration to follow in their footsteps.”