Department of Neurology

Neurology 637

Providence Neurology Specialists
Missoula, MT

601 W Spruce Street, Ste J
Missoula, MT  59802

Site Director: John D. Schaeffer, DO
Office Contact: Elizabeth Sinclair
WWAMI Office Contact: Liz Kelsey phone: 406-243-4763

Pre-arrival Requirements

  • Letter of Good Standing (LOGS):  Required for this site.  Please go to your E*Value profile and download the LOGS to send.  Instructions if needed.  Send to Dr. Schaeffer.

Travel & Housing

Travel: Contact the WWAMI office at least one week before the start date to coordinate your arrival and any other details. If you drive, you will receive mileage reimbursement for one roundtrip to and from the site. You may also be eligible for one night’s stay in a hotel during your drive each way. Contact Scott Bailey at for mileage reimbursement and overnight hotel information or to make other travel arrangements.

Please be advised that there is no vehicle available at this site. If you fly, you will need to use public transportation once at your site.

Housing: Housing is provided. Please contact Liz (see above) for details.

What To Bring & Orientation

Equipment to bring: White coat and name tag, reflex hammer, tuning fork (128Hz), stethoscope,
(ophthalmoscope recommended).

Clerkship orientation: You will need to view the away student orientation video on the Distance Learning page. You willl need to refer to your Pocket Syllabus (see below) when viewing the video.

Pocket syllabus: Available at the site. A printable (PDF) version is also available on the Pocket Syllabus page.

First day: Contact the clinic to find out when to arrive on your first day.

Course Requirements

Course requirements are listed below. Refer to the Distance Learning page for due dates.

Cases: Two case write-ups are due each week. Further information is available in the orientation video and on the Cases page. Your assigned case numbers are on the Distance Learning page. Please note that your assigned case numbers are different than for the Seattle-based students. Weekly case answers and video lectures will be available on the Distance Learning page on Thursdays after 1PM.

Patient log: You are required to log in the patients you have seen each week. The log is described in the clerkship orientation video. Additional details are on the Patient Log page.

Clinical & Bioethical Mini-CEX exercises: You are required to do both a clinical and a bioethical mini-CEX for this course. See the Mini-CEX page for details.

Presentations: Presentation requirements are described in the orientation video and are available on the Presentations page.

Final exam: Your final exam will be held in Missoula unless you tell the clerkship director otherwise.  The scheduling/notification process runs through UW Testing Services and the contact email is  See the Final Exam page for details about the exam.

Site Expectations

Welcome to Missoula.  Once you’re done with orientation come to the office to meet us.

Schedule:  You will spend about half of your time with Schaeffer and half with Reid.  We are each on call every four weeks.  When one of us is on call you will be with that person for the week.  When neither of us is on call you will be with one of us in the office for the week.  There are so many switches in the call rotation that it is impossible to publish a schedule in advance.  During the weeks in the office we work from 8AM to 5PM.  For office follow-ups we will go in together and we (Reid/Schaeffer) will do the interim history; you will then usually do the exam.  For office consults you will go in first and get the history, then come out and present it to us; we will then go back in together and you will do the exam.  For hospital consults you will do both the history and exam, and then present to us.  We will work together on how to split up the hospital follow-ups.   During office weeks you are done at the end of office hours.  During call weeks you are not on call and you have no assigned night or weekend duties.  We will let you go when the workday ends.  If something truly fascinating comes in at night or on a weekend we might call you to let you know and you can decide whether or not to come in; no extra credit for coming in and no points off if you don’t.

Feedback:  We do the feedback as we go along.  We will give our comments as we go over the histories and exams together.  As a result we do not plan a formal feedback session mid-way through the clerkship.  You can request feedback from us any time you want.  Feedback to us is always welcome.

About us:  We teach because we like to, and we strive for an interactive environment.  We ask a lot of questions.  Our questions are not intended to belittle, humiliate, or embarrass you; we don’t know what to teach you unless we have a feel for what you already know.  We also like for you to ask us questions and teach us.  If there is a particular neurology topic you have an interest in please let us know so that we can make sure we discuss it.

Presentation:  There is a required presentation for this clerkship that you will give during your last week.  Please don’t feel that you have to choose an exotic topic.  Choose something you are interested in, we always find something to learn from you.

Expectations:  The school has certain expectations such as on-line cases and the presentation, that are described in the course syllabus.  Our expectations are first to show up on time every day and try hard, and to be respectful and professional with all patients, staff and providers.  Our goals for you are to be able to obtain a meaningful neurological history and do a reliable neuro exam,  use this information to localize the disease process in the nervous system, generate a differential, then a plan to determine the diagnosis.