brightlywoven: (weavings)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8177878.stm

Dear government,

So you decree that you can't allow my department and I to negotiate a contract where I work more than 48 hours a week but get more supervised time where I learn, but it IS alright for me to 'opt' to work extra hours to cover an understaffed rota?
And you say this knowing full well that the 48 hour limit means the rotas will always be understaffed*
So in effect, I'll continue to work well in excess of the hours, but it will be my 'choice' and therefore won't be reflected in my salary, which will be calculated on the basis of 48 hours. Furthermore, the extra hours will be harried and unsupervised, so won't do a lot to help me become a better doctor.

Next time you want to 'protect' me, could you just - um - not?

Thanks,
me


*NB That is to say, they will be understaffed because of the limit on training places. This whole thing could be fixed with more trainees, but you don't want that, because then you'd have to pay them as skilled consultants when they complete training.
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (lalala)
exactlyhalf 'Is Stephen Fry gay?'
dr_b 'come on, what was his most famous role?'
exactlyhalf 'Colonel Melchett?'




Judge, regarding a man who has murdered both his children by stabbing them

" For any man to kill his child is a ghastly, horrific crime. To kill two of your children, each in different ways vulnerable and under your trust, is almost unimaginable."

Now, maybe I am deeply twisted, but halfway through this, I was convinced he was going to say 'looks like carelessness'.

Also! Today we had bundles of crap flying around the ward, when the nurse co-ordinating told me that 'what I had said restored his sense of balance'. Huh? Turns out he overheard me taking a patient's history and saying 'So, apart from the cancer, the back pain, the high blood pressure, high cholesterol and constipation - do you have any other medical problems? No?' Apparently this sounded much like 'So, apart from wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us? Nothing!'

Just how I like my days: pythonesque.

ETA: OK, clearly I overestimated the well-knownness of Wilde
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (dodo)
Proofreading my database - why did I not do this before?
(Or at least make notes when I changed my methods?)
*facepalm*

boring!

Jun. 13th, 2008 11:54 am
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (camera)
I have found a task that I loathe even more than data entry.
Data clean up.

I made a brief foray into stata, but found that my database was full of little holes, and if I didn't clean it up i'd be getting junk. Now, as I sift through thousands of pages in no particular order, I wish I'd been more organised.

And in the more rigorous world of clinical trial cleaning, we have reached new lows of pedantry. Today I received a query, asking me to reconcile two entries that did not 'exactly match'.
Listed under medical history (the patient's condition) "Reversal of ileostomy August 2007, with post-operative pain"
Listed under medication indication (the reason a medication was given) "Post operative pain following reversal of ileostomy".

Surely it is obvious to the most lay of lay persons that these are THE EXACT SAME THING!
Ironically, the only way to satisfy this pedant monster would be to say that the paracetamol was given for "Reversal of ileostomy August 2007, with post-operative pain", as though the operation was something we needed to 'treat'. Dammit.
brightlywoven: (docs)
Give me a dodo and call me Thursday - I'm off to Swindon for a training job.

*is happy*

words fail

Apr. 7th, 2008 04:19 pm
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (grrr)
http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/short/336/7647/748

The sub-and-rapidly-becoming-text here being: women take responsibility for more unpaid work than their male colleagues do, so we should ration their education and employment opporunities.

Kiss my ass.

passed!

Feb. 19th, 2008 09:12 am
brightlywoven: (harriet)
1 down, 2 to go!
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (peter wimsey)
In a fit of sycophancy I took on a night shift last night. 26 hours later I crawled into bed. It was fun though, not least because I got to admit general medical patients for the first time in ages, doing proper differentials, coming up with management plans and denying opiates to drug seekers. (oh, and my favourite game on cover shift - Make the Patient Pee)

Now recovering with DVDs. An episode of Strong Poison had me thinking you could play a LPW drinking game. If you joined in with all those brandys and soda, G's and T, sherries and madeiras, you could end up pleasantly sozzled. On reflection, poured self large port. Happy now. Might just toddle over for a refill though
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (Default)
uber-quick post, cycling off to exam hall now. Thanks for all your good luck wishes
Anyone interested in a post-exam drink and/or dinner at the Gardener's Arms in Jericho tonight? We'll be there from about 6pm, from which time I aim to be a normal person again.
brightlywoven: (huh?)
practice exam #1 tonight - 68% (borderline fail)
practice exam #2 tonight - 88% (clear pass)

WTF???

Don't know where that leaves me....
brightlywoven: (harriet)
Here I am, studying (and watching scrubs) on a Friday night, distracting myself from memorising antituberculous agents by checking the web and I check BBC news...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/7087846.stm

It was only a fortnight ago I discovered the proposal that would lock me out of training in the UK, but my god it has felt like a long time. Exactlyhalf and I have tried to reformulate our universe in the light of what looked to be a crushing blow. I honestly thought the chances of this appeal succeeding were in the order of 1%. I'd even begun filling out a DPhil application. And now, glorious reprieve.

I get to stay! And work! And train in a sensible order! Caloo, callay. I'm going to have a glass of wine and a celebratory chortle.

On a contemplative note though, I now I have a tendancy to anticipate trouble. I've certainly put myself through a lot of grief by expecting the worst here. Then again, if I'd been sanguine, I do believe there was a large chance I would have ended up stranded and unprepared. Still, it does take it out of one to anticipate disaster.
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (Default)
A question, prompted by my encounter yesterday with a mad person. What is surgery to you? Is it:

a) Something that is inherently risky and painful, to be resorted to only when the likely benefits outweigh the likely harms (and almost certain pain).

b) An assault on the body's integrity and a form of charlatanism. I'll have some Noni juice and a Reiki massage, please.

c) A way to get some TLC and attention from nurses/surgeons/my family (plus, cool scars!).

d) The only way to fix a problem for good.

e) My NHS given right dammit, and I'm not leaving till I get some!

f) A totally valid career choice.

Discuss (If f, it's OK, you may go now. Here's a fresh pair of scrubs and a banana for you.)
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (Default)
And I thought I wasn't a student anymore!

Here I am doing homework at 1 am. It's so long since I have tried to decipher immunology (I get the principles, but everything descends into acronyms so quickly, and I'm left struggling to remember if the CD4 are the CTL or the NK or the THC, or whether that is the CD8. Seriously.)

This staying up late malarkey was no fun when it meant dozing through classes in the morning, but we have a full day of operating [1] tomorrow. And that means being upright and awake [2]

Oh well, now I have a very boring powerpoint for friday, so all that's left is the paper I promised to edit and reference (in exchange for being second author), which the boss wants Friday, although she only gave it to me yesterday.

Do you think there are extensions in the 'real world' [3]


[1] - For me, that means, in technical terms 'holding things' and 'paperwork'
[2] - Not because I will be doing anything that could actually hurt somebody, but because falling asleep or fainting in theatre is a) bad manners and b) gets you teased mercilessly. And if you look sleepy, people tend to assume you're on the brink of fainting, which is pretty much just as bad.
[3] don't let the late night rantings fool you - i love it really!
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (Default)
I am the evil woman who makes children cry.

Yesterday, I made a 13 year old boy refuse the operation he really really wanted because....

....It meant having a needle.

I must admit my sympathy was delayed. Then he started sobbing, and my heart broke. How nasty am I? I forgot that 13 year olds are terrified of people like me (even though I tell the little ones they can call me Dr Biscuit because my real name is too long!)

I have a patient (4 years old), who has had so many needles, drips and other generally nasty things happen to him that he gasps in terror when a doctor enters the room. I have to hold my hands up and say 'no needles'. And then when I have to do things, he sobs throughout, and cries piteously to his mother 'It will hurt' and 'when will it be over?' and 'mummy she's hurting me'. His mum keeps reassuring us that this is his way of coping with the unknown, and he's not that distressed, but it's hard to believe when he's screaming.

(In between screaming, he's super cute. After I gave him a 'rectal washout' today (no wonder he screamed!), although he needed a needle too, he turned to me and said 'I need a rest before my needle'. )
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (Default)
Yay me!

No more an unemployed Oxford hanger-on, as of Wednesday I shall be a bona fide respectable citizen, with a *job*.

*Dances around the living room some more*

And I don't have to commute to Banbury on a daily basis because they didn't offer me a job in Banbury. Oh no. They offered me a job at the John Radcliffe. A mere 5km from home! I can cycle.

So I will be a senior house officer in Paediatric Surgery for the next four months. I hearby undertake not to complain about the work, the hours or the pay. For at least 2 months!

Off to celebrate now.

*Dances away*

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