Emergency department is the most enjoyable department I went through among all the six postings as a houseman. Initially I wanted to do anaesthesia as my six posting, but it was full, so they sent us to do Emergency Department instead. When I first started at emergency department I was so depressed. I did not like the shifts, my sleep pattern became haywire, one shift can be so busy as if you’re doing a 24-hour shift. Even before I started I already kinda hate emergency department because they keep sending and referring patients over and over again.
Emergency department is the most commonly misunderstood department, the most hated department, dubbed as the stupidest department in the hospital. Medical officers on call usually become very apprehensive when called upon to see patients in emergency department. Thus, it is also usually the most-yelled-at department.
What people do not understand is that we see all the patients other departments do not want to see, we do procedures other people do not want to do. For every patient admitted, we discharge ten of them. Patients cannot be forever observed at emergency department else there won’t be any beds for the next ones and the inflow and outflow of patients at any time can vary.
Nobody really thank the emergency department for that. Certainly not the houseman and nurses in the ward who keep getting patients, not the medical officers who get referred. Sadly not even the patients thank the emergency department. They thank the specialists of the departments they got referred to instead.
But nonetheless it’s the most enjoyable department to work in anyway.
For those who never work in emergency department, please come and work for few months. When you are upstairs, you do not like what we do downstairs. But when you have been downstairs, then you will understand what we do and why we do it. You will understand why we don’t give a fart about LFTs, or TFTs, or anemic workouts, because they do not change emergency medicine management. You will understand that we do not like to send patient for fancy imaging, as we are scared patient might collapse. You will understand that a patient may have GCS of 13 or 14 or even 15 and we still intubate (initially GCS is used to assess patient in head injury/trauma, now the medical fraternity use it like no tomorrow as if its theirs).
I had a lot of fun and learn a lot more in this department than anywhere else…
Selamat hari raya everyone!