A junior doctor is any doctor between one year out of medical school and one year short of becoming a consultant.
A junior doctor starts work well before most patients wake up. Finishes work when all the urgent jobs are done. A junior doctor can’t just leave at 5pm because it says so in their contract. Not if their patient is in uncontrollable pain, or hypoxic or in dire need of a medical review.
A junior doctor eats lunch when they can. Often its a working lunch. And it might be interrupted if their bleep goes off.
A junior doctor will miss birthdays, festivals, weekends and evening plans because they are working.
A junior doctor won’t stop being a doctor when they’re in the supermarket, the train or even another country.
A junior doctor wants to be one. They’re on the patient’s side, fighting their battles with them.
A junior doctor will be the one a patient sees daily, the one who takes their blood test and runs it to pathology. A junior doctor might even do the patient’s surgery.
A junior doctor doesn’t give up on healthcare.
As 2018 draws to a close in just a couple of days, it seems prudent to reflect on the year past. I turned 25 this year. Quarter century. Started my final year of medical school. Recognised I was overworked, stressed and not coping. Found some healthy (and some not so healthy) ways to overcome the problems. I finally went on a friends only holiday. I visited Russia. I saw a 12 year old die. I helped saved the life of a 96 year old. I put a catheter into a man’s urethra after he had come in from a road traffic collision. I watched a new born baby being born, a man become a father. Many moments made 2018 an emotionally charged year and some moments will always stay with me. Continue reading
Fear of missing out aka FOMO
In the age of twitter, facebook, InstaGram, snapchat and a general need to update everyone on our lives constantly, it is hardly surprising how over connected we all are.
It’s great that we are. I’ve met and chatted to people in and out of the healthcare industry and engaged in lots of fascinating conversations on various topics about medicine, health policies and the future for us.
But alongside it also comes a major issue. I see it everywhere. It’s the FOMO culture. It’s the thought that I must do everything humanly possible and experience all that I can and remain busy every minute of every day. because everyone else is too. It’s hectic, time-consuming and frankly totally pointless.
In today’s world our careers are bench marked by how successful we are in comparison to our followers on LinkedIn. Our popularity is judged by the no. of lives, RTs and comments we get. Our self-worth is dependent on what others think of us.
But on top of that every time we do get attention it only feed the self-perpetuated cycle of instant gratification. Unfortunately what this has led to (IMO) is a lot of superficial ideas and connections with very little genuine interest or basis behind it.
When this sort of culture seeps into our lives as professionals that’s where I start thinking that perhaps being over connected is as much a hindrance as it is a help.
FOMO needs to stop. we’re all part of one community and at least as far as healthcare is concerned you need every single person to be doing their own job not replicating that of someone else.
As someone famous once said: “be yourself. everyone else is already taken.”
Reflection. It is the dreaded word in healthcare. Why? Because it is uncomfortable and tedious. Imagine selecting the most boring film you know and watching every excruciating minute of it. Now imagine watching it with the most critical person you know. Does that sound fun? Reflection isn’t meant to be fun. But it is vital for creating a better health care service. Continue reading
My goodness. We’re tipping into the third week of 2016 already. *insert about a billion cliche lines in here about how 2015 was a great year blah blah blah and how 2016 will bring health and prosperity our way…*
Actually 2016 started in a poor way. At least for the NHS and for me personally too. First let’s talk a little about the the public health service in England. And then I’ll talk a little bit about myself, maybe. Continue reading
Media is a fairly new concept. Medicine on the other hand has existed in some form or the other ever since human kind has been getting sick. The depiction of the medical industry is often one that is used for different purposes in media. Be it the news coverage of ‘Ebola’ or the political elements of a ‘privatised healthcare and demolition of the NHS’ or even the romanticisation of being a doctor as is often shown in Television programs.
It all comes down to one point: As long as media depicts medicine, the public’s fascination with it will continue.