This is a guest post from Carolyn Thomas:
An Open Letter To All Hospital Staff
Dear hospital employees,
After a particularly bizarre experience undergoing a treadmill stress echocardiogram at your hospital recently, I decided to do something that I have never done before: I called the manager of the cardiology department to complain about her staff. (Incidentally, a recent opinion survey of international tourists found that Canadians were #1 in only one category: “Least likely to complain when things go wrong” — so you can appreciate that lodging an official complaint is a fairly big deal here!)
In my best PR fashion, I told the manager how distressing the appointment had been because of the behaviour of the two cardiac technicians in the room. It’s not so much that they were openly rude, but it was their insufferable lack of people skills that had pushed me over the edge. No introductions, no eye contact, no consideration of how awkward this test can be, no explanation of the test procedures or even the flimsiest effort at polite conversation. To them, I was merely the 1:00 o’clock appointment, the obstacle between them and their next coffee break, just a piece of meat on a slab — but worse, an invisible piece of meat. Read more »
What is a hospitalist and what kind of care does a hospitalist provide? It’s funny to read what people are writing these days about my professional role in patient care. It now appears hospitalists don’t manage medical issues anymore, but rather go through seven years of medical training to discuss the efficiency of the cafeteria food with their patients.
I read one article where the reader (obviously not a hospitalist) suggests that a hospitalist is a medical doctor who can do all the things normal doctors can, but instead of seeing patients all day, he makes rounds through the hospital, talking to patients to find out what can make their hospital stay better. And what kind of issues does the hospitalist deal with on their rounds? Why, the efficiency of the cafeteria food, of course.
I guess I was sleeping the day I was supposed to learn about the efficiency of hospital food in medical school. Maybe that means, after reviewing the SHM/MGMA 2010 hospitalist salary compensation report, I should request a pay cut because of my failure to provide cafeteria support. Or better yet, maybe I could make it up by asking security if I could provide takedown support on some code assists. Okay, I feel better about my role as a hospitalist.
*This blog post was originally published at The Happy Hospitalist*