Dear Uncle Sam:
I know it’s been a rough week. I’m sure you’re grieving the lost of life at Fort Hood just like the rest of us, but I’m compelled to write you this letter. I hope you take it in the spirit in which it is meant.
I read an article at Salon.com today that made me wonder about your judgement. Since when did you stop listening to your doctors? The article was about Dr. Kernan Manion, a psychiatrist who wanted to help troops before they went postal on military bases. Uncle Sam, Dr. Manion use to work for you at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Then he got fired. Why did you give Dr. Manion the boot for stating the obvious? He pointed out that troops at Camp Lejeune are getting bullied by superiors and dumped into an overwhelmed mental health care system when they asked for psychiatric help. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Nurse Ratched's Place*
My iPhone started ringing just as my nursing colleagues and I were getting ready to report off to the next shift at Undisclosed Government Hospital. The frantic caller was one of our nurses. She cried, “Are you on lockdown? Don’t leave the unit!” I signaled everyone in the room to cut the chatter. Then we heard the patients in the television room gearing up. I’m not going to replay everything that happened last night. I can’t do it. Suffice to say that things got tense at the nurses station when the name of the Fort Hood triggerman was released. We knew him. He was a former psychiatrist at UGH.
People are asking me what it was like to work with Dr. Hasan. They want to know if there were any signs that he was going off the deep end. No, he didn’t come across as a Unabomber in scrubs. He was just one of the guys, and that’s what made him so dangerous. He could make me laugh. I use to banter with him about his bachelorhood. He told me it was too bad that I was already married and then he would ask me if I could line up a nurse who wanted to marry a doctor. We never talked about religion or politics on the unit. He was always polite and respectful. He was an officer and a gentleman. Read more »