There's a reason I'm not a poet

Posts tagged ‘palpitations’

What is your emergency?

So I’ve moved on from my FY1 year and have been working in A&E for the past month now, and I think my experience so far can roughly be imagined by the fact that I’ve had three whole days off in that month. That includes weekends by the way.

In a word? Relentless.

Part of me is a little sad that I was off last weekend, because the whole “I’ve had one day off so far” was such a badge of pride at week three. But the majority of me is quite happy with the fact that I actually got some me-time.

The thing is though, that while I’m working essentially every day, the shifts aren’t that long: say like a 8-4:30, or 11-7, or 4-12. So you often get either the whole morning off or else the evening, and so I’ve actually been able to make a fair amount of plans over the past while, which has been nice. In my previous jobs I had days that were much longer, and so committing to things was harder in a different way.

I have been enjoying A&E, and I think over the four months I will have certainly learnt a lot. The place I’m working in just opened up a new A&E department, and man is it shiny. So it’s a nice place to work in. On a good day, you’re enthused by the variety of things you’re presented with, by the enthusiasm and hard graft of the people you’re working alongside, and by the hilarious people that come through the door (intentionally or otherwise).

On a bad day, you’re overrun by swarms of people coming through the door, you’re filled with blind fear and your mind is thinking “oh pants I have no idea what’s going on with this person and I’m too young for this crap and I can’t decide if they’re going to drop dead if I let them walk out the door or if they’re just a bit drunk/weird/insane” (delete as appropriate).

But I’m getting there. Getting a bit more confident with dealing with diagnostic uncertainty, with judging levels of safety, and assessing what the person actually wants you to do for them today. And there’s time for improvement. So obviously by the end of the four months I’ll be an absolute boss at everything. Obviously.

In other news I’ve moved out of my house and am currently back at home while we look for a new place to rent. Turns out it’s pretty difficult in Belfast to find somewhere suitable, but we’re making some progress with a place now and it should hopefully work out. I’ll also be starting up Chinese lessons again later this month- custard bun 4lyf




So Friday was an interesting day. Driving to work, the cars in front of me suddenly stopped. I figured there must have been an accident, so I got out of my car with a fair sense of trepidation over the possibility of being expected to do something about it. It turned out that a car had veered off the road and fallen into a ditch, with two passengers trapped inside. And so I kinda crapped myself.

Thankfully they were both conscious and seemingly not seriously injured, and I’ll tell you now that when I last saw them heading off in the ambulances towards the hospital (about 5 minutes from the site), they were looking well. So luckily it ended well! But walking up I was pretty anxious.

As other drivers and myself approached the car, someone asked if anyone was a trained first-aider. I replied with the somewhat terrifying sentence of “I’m a doctor”, and gently moved some other guy out of the way to get an idea of how the two men inside were doing. I later realised that this random person is in fact a consultant in my hospital. Awkward. Thankfully a consultant anaesthetist also appeared on the scene shortly after I did and the pressure certainly decreased.

The whole thing was quite a feat on the behalf of the emergency services. I was impressed with the communication between the different team members and how they managed to overcome the various obstacles that a sidewards car in the rain down a ditch with trees and a slowly rising water level presents.

For me, it posed a problem in the sense that my clothes were soon absolutely covered in mud. My brown shoes were black and I was in absolutely no fit state to walk into a building with sick people unable to fight off infections. So I took off my shoes, stole 5p off a stranger to buy a plastic bag to put em in and dandered on round to theatres to find a pair of scrubs. Which was a perfect time to walk past my educational supervisor as I realised that my socks were even more mismatched than ever before.

I obviously ended up being late for work and spent the rest of the day frantically trying to catch up, but I figured it was a decent excuse! And as my first “is there a doctor on board” experience it certainly didn’t disappoint in the realms of anxiety and fear. Fingers crossed that’ll also be something that comes with time