Tagging in a department is a no-fun period for a houseman. The work hours are from 7am till 10pm everyday for the first two weeks (in the first department posting) and one week or less in subsequent postings.
Why is it no fun for a tagger?
1. You are always BLUR. Always. You might know how to manage a patient in med school, but in the wards it is all about ordering this and that, referring this and that, reviewing and clerking this and that.
2. At 5pm, when everyone clocks out, you will feel overwhelmed, mostly for a tagger who knows nothing. You and some on-call housemen. It’s kinda tiring to review all patients, and it’s kinda lonely.
3. Haven’t seen daylight in a while, except thru the windows of the ward “prisons”.
4. I already hate the short forms. They are just too much.
5. I like to do procedures, although I am not skilled yet. But I really can’t find the stuffs I need (cotton, needles, trays, dopplers, the so many forms I have to write down). That’s kinda tiring too.
6. Sometimes too blur what to write or what to do. Lucky my fellow HOs are helping (I am currently working with a senior in my med school in the same ward).
7. Specialists and consultants in my department are alpha males. No bullshitting. The overwhelming pressure when they are together in ward rounds makes a tagger never want to present any case at all.
8. Three rounds in one day – morning, evening and night. Night round involves on-call housemen and taggers only. On-call houseman gets extra allowance, but a tagger does not. On-call doctors gets free food, a tagger does not. Go figure.
But the good thing about tagging is it gives a houseman some confidence in managing and handling ward patients and that is priceless…