shutterstock_17897284 Ok, I’ll admit it: I had no idea.  I thought that the whining and griping by other doctors about EMR was just petulance by a group of people who like to be in charge and who resist change.  I thought that they were struggling because of their lack of insight into the real benefits of digital records, instead focusing on their insignificant ...

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shutterstock_62024029 When I first lay eyes on Marilyn, I don’t think she will survive another week. Eighty-nine years old with short, curly gray hair, she sits in a wheelchair in the examination room. According to the nursing sheet, she weighs one-hundred and nine pounds. She wears a bulky white sweater over a gray dress that seems too big for her tiny body.  Her ...

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shutterstock_106417913 I'm not old enough, in emergency medicine years, to identify with the struggle of those calling for the end of the term “ER.”  The argument was about the “R” vs. the “D”: "It's not a room!”  It’s a department!” was the war cry.  Then perceptions changed, battles were won, and along came the very popular TV show, "ER.”  The war hawks quieted ...

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shutterstock_122014903 As I have written many times in my previous blogs, it is essential that patients and physicians partner in the management of disease.  Outcomes are improved when patients are actively engaged in their own healthcare.  Part of engagement involves forming a relationship with a physician through regular follow up visits.  Relationships with doctors, just as with friends and spouses, evolve over time. ...

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That was Virginia’s second visit to the hospital in the ten days of the new year. It also ended up being the last. Virginia was a patient we all knew. She came to the hospital frequently. The aphorism of our intern year was, if you had not taken care of Virginia once, you were not going to graduate out of internship. And that was hardly an exaggeration- almost no one in ...

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shutterstock_110328605 My first night shift in a stretch of 7 was almost over.  It was 6:15am and I had to keep moving otherwise the minute I would stop, my eyelids would drop like two ton shades and I’d fall asleep.  That never makes for a good drive home after a night shift. “Got time to see one more?” asked Jenny the nurse. “Do I have ...

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shutterstock_150037820 I work part-time. Some people think that women who work part-time are ruining medicine and contributing to the physician shortage. So I want to present my very reasonable list of reasons why I work part-time in a flexible job: 1. I am sick constantly. Constantly. My kids are petri dishes. And it always lasts forever. Even as I'm writing this, I'm coughing, and ...

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There’s a lot nurses can learn from doctors. There I said it. But I’m not talking about clinical ability or medical knowledge. I’m talking about expectations. I’m talking about basic behaviors that dictate a predictable response. Nurses don’t feel valued. Much of this is warranted, but I argue that some of it is self-inflicted. I said this once to a colleague and she responded, “But that places the blame on the nurse.” I disagree. ...

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You might be surprised to know that I'm lying here in bed still thinking of you two weeks after you've died. During the month that I watched you die, I often wondered what it felt like to be you, with your deep, husky voice, rounded belly and stubborn anger. You'd once owned your own mechanic shop; now you were sitting here in a hospital bed, staring up at the medical team ...

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LanceArmstrongOprahinterview According to George Orwell, "serious sport has nothing to do with fair play. It is bound up with hatred, with jealousy, with boastfulness, with disregard for all rules, and with sadistic pleasure in witnessing violence: in other words it is war minus the shooting." Ok ... sounds pretty much like the Super Bowl, but the Tour de France? Lance Armstrong? Ergogenic aids? Cancer ...

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