Monday, January 31, 2011


The job's been going great lately; I look forward to my shifts these days, I've been doing a lot of teaching, and in general am enjoying medicine more than at any time since I started on this path. (12 years ago now!)

And yet, here it is, 4:00 in the morning, and I'm sitting up thinking. During my shift yesterday there was a situation that could easily have led to one of my patients dying. Quickly. It was a systems issue and nobody blames me for a failure of knowledge or skill. But it was still my responsibility. Even though there wasn't a bad outcome for the patient -- this time -- it's a reminder of how high the stakes can be in this business.