As she lay on the gurney telling me she was tired and having vaginal bleeding yet again, I was doing my own biopsy of her medical record. It stated very clearly that palliative care and hospice had been recommended to her for her end-stage gynecologic cancer. So, why, I’m thinking, highly annoyed, is she now in the ER, late at night, creating problems for me? Why could she just not accept ...

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Recently I've seen a number of reports of women who are denied the ability to help in a plane emergency because they are not believed to be doctors. While most of the denied women are of color, since this became public a large number of women of all races have come forward because of similar racial and gender discrimination. I am an emergency physician, and I was once called to duty ...

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Four years ago, I was having a conversation with a friend of mine. We had graduated residency the same year and our careers had taken us to different parts of the country. It was ACEP 2012. We’d been mingling with old friends and current colleagues, and the conversation turned to kids. I told him my wife and I were getting ready to start having children. He said he and his wife ...

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"Good morning, Sandy. How was work?” How do I answer that in a normal way? Any given shift in any given ED is comprised of the gamut of emotions playing out behind the calm facade of physicians and nurses. Afterward, we often don't articulate or even process the roller coaster of feelings. The story of a recent Monday overnight illustrates the wild ride of emotions most people don't realize that emergency ...

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One very late spring evening during my last year of residency, I was driving home and got stopped at a police DUI checkpoint. I was exhausted from being up all night from being on call the night before and having been very busy had no time to shower, shave or change into my street clothes. I also got called in at 4 a.m. the previous day and had not showered or shaved that ...

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You have to create a disconnect from death. Not indifference, in fact, it’s your duty to combat it. But as an emergency medicine physician, you lose that battle often. I encounter death on a near daily basis as a resident in the emergency department, and despite all my years of training, there’s often nothing I or anyone can do to prevent it. Health care workers in such an environment often ...

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I am sharing this account of a serious medical emergency on a transoceanic flight because I hope it helps other health care providers assist people in the future and learn from the difficulties I encountered. About 8 1/2 hours into a 17-hour flight, a gentleman had a syncopal episode in the exit row I was sitting in. His face was bleeding, and he was having issues controlling his bowels afterwards. His ...

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Speech recognition errors occurred in 71 percent of emergency department notes, and 21.1 percent of notes with errors were judged as critical with potential implications for patient care says a recent study in the International Journal of Medical Informatics. Investigators looked at a random sample of 100 dictated notes and found 128 errors or 1.3 errors per note. More than half of the errors were ascribed to speaker mispronunciation. Although ...

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It’s true. Man nearly dies on plane because crew didn’t believe black woman was doctor. The medical fiasco on Delta Airlines has now gone viral after a Facebook post by Tamika Cross, MD, the physician who was turned away as a fellow passenger was unresponsive. Tamika joins a long list of female physicians who have experienced the same discrimination. Meet a few of these doctors below.
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I was working a 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. locums shift a few months ago and was preparing to leave. There were about 15 patients in rooms and 15 waiting to come back. I asked the lone night physician: "Hey, do you want me to stay a while?" Her answer, defeated, was this: "No, don’t worry. It’s always like this." I packed my bag and headed to the hotel, still feeling guilty ...

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