Tuesday, February 2, 2010

"Saw some amazing cases..."

Gene Gincherman, M.D.
Go Team member and Johns Hopkins Suburban Hospital emergency doctor

Today I worked a day shift again, but took on a different role and became an ER flow manager, making sure that the patient flow got more efficient.

I was running around all day distributing patients between different docs, communicating with managers, teams from other NGOs, pharmacy, lab, etc. It was also important to make sure that none of the providers got dehydrated, and had their 15 minutes to swallow an MRE, and stay hydrated.

Tom Kirsh, M.D. (Go Team leader) took on the role of disposition manager, making sure that patients were moved out ofthe ER efficiently. I thinks all of the docs liked the system that Tom and I put in place today much better.
Unlike other days, not a single patient left without being seen. The volume was lower oday, only about 160 patients (it is Sunday in Haiti, and people are very religious). I suspect tomorrow I will have to manage the flow of 300-400, which may be more challenging.

I have a feeling I am now appointed to be the operational manager for the rest of the stay. Still saw some amazing cases: tetanus, possible cerbral malaria, saved a guy with a gunshot wound to the back,and another with a stab to the groin, that got his femoral artery.
I have become good friends with the medics from 82nd Airborne. They are great guys, and are very helpful.
One of them said something truly meaningful to me: "Don't let anyone ever tell you that you are nor making difference, no matter how frustrating it gets at times".
That meant a lot coming from a guy who's been to place that we as civilians can only fathom.

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