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Meet your chief resident: Rachel Randell, MD

Thursday, August 16, 2018
Rachel Randell

Rachel Randell, MD, is one of the 2018-19 co-chief residents for the Pediatrics Residency program. Rachel is a graduate of the University of Delaware and received her MD at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine. As chief resident, Rachel will serve as a mentor to the residents and be a liaison to the administration. She will return to fellowship in the Division of Pediatric Rheumatology after her chief resident year.

How did you end up at Duke?
You could call it fate because I was born here at Duke University Hospital! I grew up in Durham, went away for college and work, then found myself happily back in the area for medical school at the University of North Carolina. Looking at pediatrics residency programs, I was lucky to have such outstanding local options! I was especially excited about exposure to subspecialties at Duke, the tight-knit resident community, emphasis on education, research opportunities and really inspiring faculty in leadership positions.

How did you decide to become a pediatrician?
What about the field interests you the most?  I have known that I wanted to be a Pediatrician for pretty much as long as I can remember – it’s the reason I went to medical school!

What are your main responsibilities as chief resident?
Ryan (the other chief resident) and I get a lot of clinical time in both the pediatrics primary care clinic and on the inpatient wards. We spend the rest of our time planning educational conferences for residents, making resident schedules, participating in different hospital meetings and committees and helping educate the medical students on their pediatrics clerkship.

Do you remember a key teaching moment from your training that helped you become a better doctor?
At UNC I had the opportunity to meet a lot of patients with Cystic Fibrosis during their prolonged hospitalizations. There was one young woman who suffered all of the worst complications of the disease but also dealt with a lot of psychosocial factors that impacted her course – she taught me a lot about chronic and terminal illness and that was where I really fell in love with chronic illness care.

What is your approach to leading and working with residents?
I think I am in a really unique position to “lead” a group of incredibly talented, hardworking and caring individuals. I try to meet each person where they are at and give them the tools/resources to get to the next level.

How will you give your residents the confidence they need to be successful?
Our residents are so talented already that I’m not sure they need more confidence from me – but I do try post schedules as far in advance as possible so they can make the most of their limited time off!

What makes you a good fit for this role?
I am detail-oriented and organized, which makes me a good person to do your schedule J I also hope to be approachable and supportive, but to be a strong advocate when needed.

What do you want to do after your chief resident year?
I am happily staying at Duke for fellowship in Pediatric Rheumatology.

What passions or hobbies do you have outside of the department?
I love anything that has to do with food or wine (especially if I get to eat or drink it while in another country). I spend most of my free time with my fiancé Zach, our dog Chloe, my parents and Grandfather who live in Durham and other friends.

Is there anything else that you’d like to share with the Pediatrics faculty or residents?
Please remember to acknowledge and thank the residents (or any team member, for that matter) for all of their hard work ensuring that we take excellent care of children.