Yesterday was a bit better. Busy, but not terrible. I had a couple of nice interactions with other physicians and it made me think a bit about how people generally treat each other in the hospital.
I feel thankful to work for a health system where I think there is an underlying culture and expectation of respect and kindness, especially between clinicians. People generally like each other and put patient care first. But there are still subtle ways in which sometimes I feel . . . less respected. I am not sure if it is because:
- I am in a ‘less prestigious’ specialty (ie, not surgical or even procedure-based, not critical care, not highly compensated, pediatric — which is sadly lower on some sort of artificial hierarchy for some people)
- I am female (duh).
- I have been there for less than a decade
Examples of experiences that lead to these feelings:
- Getting a stare like “WHO ARE YOU AND WHY ARE YOU IN OUR SPACE” when I walk into certain clinical areas to do consults that I was asked to do
- Getting haphazardly texted consults. At least leave me a callback number please to ask you questions! This is common consult courtesy. (To be fair, this drives Josh crazy as well.)
- Getting casually asked to do things that are not my job (example: get this patient that we are both consulting on an appointment with some other specialty). This doesn’t happen a lot but I am definitely sensitive to it when it does.
All that said, the above things do not always occur. In fact, I had some very *positive* experiences yesterday which is what led me to think about things. I had someone from a surgical specialty call me for a consult in a nice way and it was so refreshing! I also had a very lovely interaction with one of our neo attendings who seemed to value my clinical opinions.
Anyway. It was nice. It benefits the work culture AND the patients – truly a win/win. (PS: I am sure there are issues like this in every industry and corporate environment!)