Thursday, February 18, 2010

Well, that was an interesting phone call.

Dear Doctor Dipwad:

If I call you several times in the course of a night, warning you about subtle neurological changes that your patient is having, please don't blow me off.

Because, if you do, I will be forced to call your attending at oh-damn-thirty and let him know that the subtle changes you blew off have become something truly horrible. By that time, of course, the patient will be already on the way for a stat scan, and I will have alerted surgery. 'Cause I'm good like that.

So when your patient (whose changes you ignored) is going to surgery for an emergency skull-chop, and your attending isn't happy about that, and I'm running mannitol much faster than it probably ought to be run, and there are intubation trays all over the place, just remember: dealing with it now means you'll have less to deal with later.

And, dear Doctor, once it's been established that you were indeed a Dipwad about things, please please please don't try to blame it on me. Don't tell your attending that I didn't notify you when things started to go pear-shaped. Don't tell my boss that I failed to catch the subtle changes that I called you about four different times. There's this little thing called charting that I do that will put paid to your story. Also, the page operator has a computerized record of all the times that I tried to make you see reason.

All that being a further Dipwad will do is make my boss call me in the middle of a nap to make sure it's okay that she accesses my charting. I'll say it's fine, and you'll be sitting there in a conference room with my boss and *your* boss, and I'll be on speakerphone, and then things will begin to get very depressing for you.

I'm just sayin'. You interrupted my nap like I interrupted yours, but the consequences were very, very different.

(The patient will be fine, by the way.)


Brian said...

As long as the patient's going to be okay, I like this kind of story. It's nice to see that shit does not always roll downhill.

I'm about to start nursing school, and when I ask experienced nurses about the most important stuff I should remember, number two on every list is "Document everything." This story makes me happy to know all that documentation is actually useful.

Gert said...

God, I love your blog! You're a really fine writer......have a great weekend.

Jo said...

I'm glad that the patient is going to be ok, and I hope that the Dr got the roasting he justly deserved!