Dr. Weanus always studies his patients’ charts carefully. Who knows what clues, what tiny bit of information, suitable considered, processed and digested in his mighty brain, may produce the cure, the telling analysis, the means of improving the patient’s quality of life or, at least, a higher OHIP* fee?
Can anyone really say? So he pours over the chart, stroking his chin thoughtfully: what does the radiologist mean exactly, when he sees a slight opacity in the chest x-ray? Why it means I will have to order —
And then, alas, tragedy. He is interrupted. What brilliant thought, what insight is lost forever we can only guess — and worse, he is interrupted by a nurse!
“About that palliative patient in Exams you were supposed to see —”
Dr. Weanus erupts. He is incandescent. He positively glows in Outraged Physician Radiation. How dare you? he shouts. Who referred this so-called patient? I spoke to no emergency physician! This is a gross violation of procedure! I categorically refuse to see this patient!
” — she died.”
He waves a hand dismissively. “Oh, that’s all right then,” he says.
Head down, back to the chart, cheerful even.
My favourite internist.
*OHIP: Ontario Health Insurance Plan, i.e. who pays Ontario physicians.