I’m a doctor. We get all the glory. And credit. And guess what? We only deserve part of it.
I started out in medicine in the mid-80′s, volunteering at an ER. And the biggest shock to me was learning how much of what happens in a hospital is nurse territory. Doctors will see you anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes a day, depending on how sick you are. And the rest is the nurses.
They’re the ones making sure you get your pills and checking that your vital signs aren’t dropping. They make sure you don’t fall down and break something. If you start vomiting, doctors will run out of the room and the nurses will rush in. They change your wound dressings and start your IV line. They’ll bring you a warm blanket. And clean disgusting things off you. Even if you’re drunk. Or delirious. Or mean. And through all of this they try be friendly and positive. Even though you aren’t their only sick patient.
I respect nurses. I learned early on that they’re key to being a good doctor. You piss off the nursing staff, and you’ll have a miserable career at that hospital. Respect and treat them well, and you’ll never regret it. They’re as important to being a good doctor as your medical degree. Maybe more.
If you come out of medical school with a chip on your shoulder against nurses, you better lose it fast. Because they will make or break your training, and often know more than you do. Be nice and they’ll teach you. A good neurology nurse is often a better inpatient neurologist than some doctors I’ve met.
I remember a guy named Steve, who was an intern with me a long time ago. We were only a few months out of medical school, and as we were writing chart notes one morning a nurse came over and asked if he’d go listen to his patient’s heart. With icy contempt, and not even looking up from the chart, he said “I don’t have to listen to his heart, because I looked at his EKG.” They ain’t the same thing, dude. If he’d listened he might have noticed that the patient had developed a loud murmur in the last 24 hours.
When the attending caught it a few hours later, Steve got chewed out. If he’d taken the nurse’s advice, and listened, he wouldn’t have gotten reprimanded by the residency board.
Here’s a quote from “Kill as Few Patients as Possible” by Oscar London, MD: “Working with a good nurse is one of the great joys of being a doctor. I cannot understand physicians who adopt an adversarial relationship with nurses. They are depriving themselves of an education in hospital wisdom.”
Those doctors are also depriving themselves of friends. On a difficult day on call, sometimes all it takes is a sympathetic nurse to temporarily add you to her patient list, steal you a Diet Coke from the fridge, and let you cry on her shoulder for 5 minutes. It doesn’t make the day any less busy, but helps you absorb the punishment better.
What got me started on this?
While I was rounding this weekend, a grateful patient’s family brought the ICU nurses a box of donuts, and so the staff was picking through them. One said, “Oh, this kind is my favorite, it has cream filling.”
And a patient in one of the rooms yelled, “Hey, babe, I got my own kind of cream-filled dessert in here! Come have a taste!”
You say that to a waitress, and you’d likely get your kicked out of the restaurant.
You say that to a co-worker, and you’d be fired and/or sued for harassment.
You say that to a lady in a bar, and you’ll likely get a black eye.
And what did the nurse do? In spite of the patient said, she went in his room, turned off his beeping IV pump, and calmly told him that he would not talk to her that way.
And I admire that.
Nursing is a damn tough job. And the people who do it are tougher. And somehow still remain saints.
Have you noticed the Mosquitos are already out! Here is a homemade trap to help keep you and the kiddos from being a blood donor!!!
HOMEMADE MOSQUITO TRAP:
1 cup of water
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1 gram of yeast
1 2-liter bottle
1. Cut the plastic bottle in half.
2. Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle.
3. Add the yeast. No need to mix. It creates carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes.
4. Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle, taping them together if desired.
5. Wrap the bottle with something black, leaving the top uncovered, and place it outside in an area away from your normal gathering area. (Mosquitoes are also drawn to the color black.)
REBLOGGING BECAUSE IMPORTANT
and if someone breaks into your house you can throw the bottle at them
^^^ My kind of person
Garon Wade and his husband Jamie were prepared for their son in 2012. They were not prepared for what strangers had to say.
- (Cab Driver in Florida directly after getting in) Where’s his mom? (Us) He doesn’t have a mom. (Long Awkward Silence)
- (Cashier at a Surf Shop, see’s just me and my little boy) Oh man, you were given Daddy duty today huh? (Me) It’s Daddy Duty everyday at my house bro. (Confused look)
- Do you think he’ll be more likely to grow up gay? (Me) No. But I’ll love him for whoever he is, so it doesn’t really matter does it?
- (Man on a plane next to me, completely out of nowhere) So did you leave his mom in DC or are you taking the baby to his mom in Florida? (Me) He doesn’t have a mom, he has two Dads. (Complete Silence)
- Are you guys going to tell him he’s adopted one day? (Us) Yea, but I’m pretty sure even if we didn’t, at some point he’d figure that one out right?
- You shouldn’t take babies on planes for the first many months because they get sick right away. (Us). He’s already been on 20 flights. (Silence)
- (Random Guy on the street) Where’s his mom? (Us) She didn’t want him, so I guess that makes us the next best thing.
- (Random Stranger at the grocery store) That baby’s so cute. Does your wife breastfeed? (Me). No he’s got two Dads so we give him formula. (Lady) What??
- (Another Random Lady at the grocery store). That baby is so young. You should NOT be out with him like this at the grocery store! (My husband) Oh I’m sorry are you a pediatrician? (Lady) Excuse me? (Husband) Are you a pediatrician? (Lady) Well, no. (Husband) Then I’m not that interested in what you have to say. My pediatrician said it’s fine to take him out. Have a good one.
- (Yet another Random Stranger) Where’s his mom? (Me) Where’s your mom?