Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas, Sicko

I was on call on Christmas day and night. Initially I expected it to be a calm night with an empty emergency room, however, I soon realized it was the complete opposite.

The ED was full of people seeking medical attention for what I considered trivial reasons: a sore throat, a wound check, or best of all, a medication refill. It was truly surprising. Were these issues that important that they couldn't wait another day? Did they really find it preferable to be in a sterile, crowded emergency room than at home with their family or friends enjoying a nice Christmas evening?

I do realize that half of these people were likely homeless and were thus looking for a warm place to spend the holiday, but that doesn't explain the other half. To them, I simply wanted to yell at them to go home and leave these minor issues for a later date ... thus giving them, and me, a less hectic Christmas.

Merry Christmas, welcome to the hospital tonight.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Halfway There

I almost forgot: today marks precisely the halfway point of this retched year!
Only 26 more weeks of being at the bottom of the ladder. Only 26 more weeks of scutwork and paperwork. And most importantly, only 26 more weeks of pre-rounding.
Not that I'm counting or anything ....

Holiday Dinner, Hospital Style

I had a special holiday dinner here at the hospital tonight, and the food was actually pretty tasty. Even more amusing was having the CEO of the hospital in the cafeteria, serving us food. And to top it off, we all got gifts!
This is my second holiday dinner served by the hospital -- first Thanksgiving, now Christmas. I suppose I could be saddened how my workplace (and not mama) is serving my holiday dinners, but it's ok ... at least it was festive.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Paradigm Shift

One Week Ago
The Caribbean is not enough. This island isn't quite as good as I expected it to be. The beaches are too crowded, there aren't enough beaches, the sun is shining too hard, and I'm getting bored just sitting on the beach reading all day long. I feel I should be more productive with my life.

I am a complete idiot. I would give almost anything to be back on that beach (in fact, I would give almost anything to be anywhere but the hospital). I cannot believe I was unable to fully appreciate a Caribbean island -- any Caribbean island -- when it was filled only with beaches and sun and large an abundance of lazy days. I knew how miserable the hospital was, and I knew I would have to return to that hell within a few days, and I still couldn't fully appreciate it. Now look at me ... I've spent 40 of the last 48 hours in this hospital. Damn.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Doctor Doctor!

Here on vacation, thoughts flow much more freely over drinks. My surgical intern friend and I spent half an hour describing the annoying text pages we get in the middle of the night, all regarding very important -- rather: "important" -- topics. (Note: this is not meant to ridicule or take a swipe at nurses. It is how we amuse ourselves to get through the misery of this year.)
  • Doctor doctor, please change Colace order from tid to bid. (really, this needs to be done at 4am?!)
  • Doctor doctor, FYI: pt's blood sugar is 78, pt asymptomatic. (don't ever again page me to tell me pt is asymptomatic)
  • Doctor doctor, pt's systolic blood pressure is 85, shall I give metoprolol? (no, which is why I wrote parameters to hold if SBP<90)
  • Doctor doctor, pt is nauseous, please write for Zofran. (who are you? what pt is this for? how about a callback number?)
  • Doctor doctor, pt doesn't feel well. please advise! (yup, we've gotten these!)
 Luckily, laughing helps wash away the tears.