Monday, March 21, 2011

I have a Crush

I have a friend on a running site who designated the "Crush of the Week". I now have one. Dr D., a hospitalist of the female persuasion, internal medicine on-call. Crush. Of. The. Week. (Maybe the MONTH. Or longer. It depends on who else steps up.)

Malingering. It means what it says. Docs shy away from saying it, because our society is so stupidly litigious. Nurses, not so much. Nurses don't get sued so easily, therefore we can call a spade a spade. We see patients all the time who love being sick for sake of being sick. Some people just like being in the hospital. They love the attention, and can go on forever about all their ailments, real or perceived. They know the buzzwords, they know the system, they take real dollars and real health-care away from people who really need those services.

I had a patient that no one would get rid of. NOTHING was wrong with this man, outside of his normal state of health. He just kept saying the right words, therefore the docs kept working him up for things that weren't wrong with him. Malingering. Walking the halls, hounding the nurses, being inappropriate with other patients, taking advantage of the nursing assistants. Everyone knew that he was fine, but no doc would stand up to him. Lawsuits, you know. Malpractice -- the driving force behind healthcare.

Anyway, Dr. D walks in and discharges the guy (with no narcotics). 8 hours later, after much drama (yelling, crying, wailing, begging, berating) he finally leaves. We send out surveys so that patients can tell us how good of a job they think we did. I don't think that Dr. D will fare very well.

Crush. Of. The. Week.

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