19 August 2011

Psych-ed out

A week in psychiatry:
10 ADHD kids getting medication refills
1 hour lecture on psychiatry
2 hours group therapy for substance abuse
1 intake H&P for substance abuse
16 hours on call with behavioral emergency group responding to local EDs and consults
1 morning of general lecture information
1 afternoon in a small community emergency department (Usually the best part of the week)
5 more ADHD kids getting medication refills

And that is why I am glad psychiatry is half over.  I don't care that I have "plenty of time to read" and prepare for the end of service exam, I am bored bored bored. There are a few other things coming up, like rounds on the geriatric psych unit, but I'm not holding out a lot of hope. Beyond being bored, I'm discouraged that I feel like I haven't learned anything beyond my textbooks.  I still don't know what a schizophrenic acts like or a histrionic personality disorder patient. I'm not that excited about OB/Gyn in general, but working with a doc who fairly lives at the hospital and seeing patients, performing skills and generally learning stuff on the job sounds like a vast improvement right now.  I'm writing this in part to remind myself in 6 weeks that I shouldn't complain about OB/Gyn wearing me down!!

02 August 2011

A different kind of funeral

In addition to all the transitions in my life as I leave classroom learning and enter clinical rotations, there has also been another big announcement which I'm still processing. Due to cuts in Medicaid funding in the state, the ambulance company I worked for is closing. While it isn't a change that will upend my life (I've only worked 6 shifts in the past 6 months), it does directly affect friends who relied on those jobs and the benefits they provided and indirectly brings me a certain sadness.

It was a difficult transition for me when the company lost the 911 emergency contract for the city the North station is in and where I spent most of my time. Many people transitioned to the company which won the contract and many more just went on to other things entirely. When I went there after the change, the place was a ghost town - empty bays, plenty of seats on the couch, empty beds at night, barely a peep at shift change. The South station always had a whole different type of personality, plus upper management in the station, and was just not a place I ever felt as comfortable.

Now, the entire company is closing and I'm watching an outpouring of grief on Facebook from current and previous employees.  I've never seen a Facebook funeral before - maybe it is more like a wake, with everyone sharing their memories of good times. While no company ever has fully satisfied employees, most are choosing positive statements and support for the displaced employees over any sort of nitpicking.

Thank you to the people who have served both the North and South cities, providing great EMS care and supportive training for the ever-growing community of EMTs.