* * Anonymous Doc

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

It's probably wrong to say, but I find myself pretty excited when patients decide to leave AMA (against medical advice). I should be warning them it's a bad idea, they should really stay, they need monitoring, they're going to regret the decision... but instead it's like, one less patient, awesome, maybe I'll get out twenty minutes earlier.

By working us this many hours, I'm afraid they're making us forget why we wanted to be doctors in the first place. I think I still want to help people. Deep down, I think I still want to help people. But when all I can think about is going to sleep, it's hard to remember what the point was to begin with. And so it becomes a battle to get things done as quickly as possible and get as many patients off the to-do list as I can, so that maybe my resident will let me go home.

The day before we're on overnight call we're supposed to get out early (so we stay under the maximum hour limits-- not because anyone's trying to be considerate), and for the most part I have been-- but it depends on the resident in charge, and what are we supposed to say when a resident just doesn't want to let us leave? I'd finished with all of my patients, I had no work left to do, and I'm just waiting for an emergency, basically-- but you can wait all day. There were other people there, who were supposed to be there-- but if I start complaining about wanting to go home and sleep, so I can spend my 27 consecutive hours in the hospital today and tomorrow, then I'm branded the lazy one, the annoying one, the bad one. I just wanted to leave. I just wanted to sleep.

I miss sleep.

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