I have no shame bout being trained in one of the oldest medical schools in England. Although I transferred only during my clinical years, it felt like I did my entire undergraduate there. So yes, I might be bias.

But I have to just write it here before I collapse. I have been meaning to compose something regarding the current working conditions but guess what, yours truly do not even have time to live life, what more to write an article to vent these all out. I shall persevere, perhaps write this in stages and multiple draft entries before clicking publish.

Maybe it is just me being the weakling here. But I think we are in the 21st century. We are no longer living in the past. There is no point comparing us to what it used to be during 'those days'. Yes, I know house officers in the past had eod (every other day) calls and worked probably 282888 hours a week and only sleep 2 hours a day and sometimes non, yet, they still managed and now they are budding surgeons, yay! Do not get me wrong, I absolutely earnestly admire and respect my bosses for their achievement, contributions, dedication and experiences. However, I think it is not exactly fashionable to compare us to what it used to be, and then continue to be demanding. Some even treat us house officers as rubbish, useless people who make them shake their heads in disgust. 

I know I am not great, I forget 90% of the things learnt in medical school. I have never heard of Forrest classification nor could I read or spell choledocholithiasis (told you I am dyslexic!) but I have the interest to learn. However, with this current working conditions which defy all possible work directives or labour law, I am pushed to ultimate exhaustion to the point I can collapse mentally, physically and emotionally. Mentally, I get so much stress because I feel I am not performing up to the standards required. I can't rest well at night and end up waking up with nausea and palpitations everyday. Physically, my hormones have gone all hire wire and I have been having amenorrhea since I can't even recall when. Emotionally, I am so fragile and been tearful because of all the clogged up feelings about being such a failure and disappointment to myself, my superiors, my family and the patients I take care of. 

Currently, we are so tight that we have to do the so-called eods. The schedule is so demanding I think everyone is burning out sooner or later. There is no room to learn because all we do every day is trying to complete the never ending joblist. We need to ensure preop bloods are taken and chased back. No shooting pods, sorry, we are the ones who run down 7 floors to an adjacent building to send the bloods. We are the ones who walk all the way to another building to the record room to trace old notes and wait ages to get old ct scans. Oh wait, we also have to escort patients down to radiology department - even the most stable patients. Oh, then you get random favours from your superiors asking us to bring films to the clinic, or call certain patients to name a few. 

Those, to me, are just a reflection of how inefficient this system is. We are wasting time doing the porter job. I don't mind, if I had only 4 patients. But no, we have 40 patients and 484929 requests. The inefficiency is hampering our potential to learn. In the scope room, we have to dilute drugs, type in patients detail, write into the green book etcetera that we haven't got time to observe, question and learn about endoscopic procedures. Alright. You may dismiss me as giving too many excuses. 

I really don't know. Maybe I am just too worked up. Maybe I am plain inefficient. The more I try, the more I fail.. Making mistakes which are unforgivable, forgetting to do tasks asked by superiors and best still, I feel so deluded every single day.

Yes. I think I am plain depressed. Period.


Ecner said…
Your work conditions really do sound horrible. Not being given the time for a good rest really affect your ability to stand back and see what you are actually doing and self reflection. I am sure you have grown a lot, as a physician and as a person. Hang in there Lynn Xuan, hope things get better for you.
LX said…
Thanks. Surprised anyone still reads this. Been such a whirlwind! How are you, btw?

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