Primary care: the variety and the intimacy of the problems I see
“Fifteen minutes for a checkup or urgent problem, thirty minutes for a physical. In the tiny gasps of time in between: Refilling scripts, checking labs, and signing medical supply orders and insurance authorization requests. Maybe lunch. Maybe a chance to get to the restroom if I am lucky. Clicking, always clicking away on my EMR, hoping to finish my notes. Maybe typing notes while holding on a phone call (why do patients call with a question about a medicine, but they leave the vial upstairs and have to retrieve it while you wait?), while trying to cram a few bites of lunch, while wondering if I will get out of there in time to get the blasted Valentine’s napkins before picking up the kids from their after-school program.
I take a deep breath.”
Melissa Schiffman is an internal medicine physician. She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “Primary care: I love the variety and the intimacy of the problems that are placed before me.” (https://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2021/08/primary-care-i-love-the-variety-and-the-intimacy-of-the-problems-that-are-placed-before-me.html)