Saturday, November 12, 2011

New Blood

The first new tech, Newbie, has been hired! Hitherto, I had been the newest tech for about a year now.  Interestingly enough, I was chosen to train him for my 12 hour shift last night, which was great. His unadulterated enthusiasm and appreciation for his exciting new job was heartwarming.  Moreover, his focus is on patient-care and making sure our patients were happy and comfortable.  This aligned well with my own philosophy and we worked very well together.  The best part of Newbie was that he wasn't lazy. He followed me throughout my high-energy day with no complaints, though I realized at the end of the night that his legs were very sore from standing all day.

In direct contrast there had been another tech-hopeful that visited the ER often, hoping to get a foot in the door. A manager had approached me and asked me about her performance. Although our tech-hopeful had a lot of ER experience in another hospital and seemed to really want to be here, I had a feeling she had too much prior experience.  Experience can make a person more adept at a job, but it can also give a person insight into how to take shortcuts and become inert.  Although she stated she had worked many codes before, when we received one, she did not jump into the action and I worked the code alone, compressions and all.  Her manner and upturned nose suggested a weary boredom of her current job and an apathy for getting to know our ER and our people.  Therefore, to the manager, I replied that she was not a good fit for us, despite or because of her experience.

Newbie, on the other hand, wanted to get into everything, but not in a competitive way.  I was resolved to give him some organization in his training and showed him at least once, in detail, how I performed each task.  My own tutorage followed a "thrown to the wolves" philosophy.  I had to learn everything by trial and error.  Secretly watching the person "training" me helped me grasp details of the trade; otherwise, there were many instances in which I could have gotten in trouble.  It felt good leading Newbie into the rooms and jumping in with a plan of attack.  We cleaned up a massive GI-bleed, helped with draining abscesses, helped set up a lumbar puncture, etc. Though the amount of information was overwhelming, he was beyond satisfied with his new job.  It was also interesting seeing him perform his own little brand of personable magic with our patients.

I was holding Ms. Lumbar Puncture's hand when she said "I can't believe I'm getting a spinal tap on 11/11/11. This is going on my Facebook!" I laughed at the reference, but Newbie went further and launched into a spirited discussion with her about various obscure movies with the same actors. I have never been a movie-person, but watching them form an instant bond because of movies was enlightening.  Everyone has different skill-sets. Whether a person can be bothered to use these skills to relate to and help other people is what makes the difference. Newbie has this wonderful quality and I am proud of him.

Yesterday's shift helped me realize I wasn't doing myself any favors by abstaining from blogging.  The plan was that I used my weekly blogging time to work on applications for medical school, but that is a very different kind of writing that I don't enjoy nearly as much.  If anything, my informal little stories will help me get back on track.  Therefore, I am back.  Sorry for the wait.


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