poured out before bed
“Let’s shoot for 9am rounding tomorrow. OK?”
Our attending stuffs his scribbled notes into an overflowing white-coat pocket, gives a wave, and shuffles toward the team room door. I look at the clock.
It is 1pm. We were to round at 9am today, as well. We finally gave up on trying to reach our attentive attending around 11:30am, stepping into another team room to ask our pressing patient care questions of another hospitalist. Our attending then paged us away from noon conference to round at 12:30. There was no apology for tardiness. Instead, he requested a quick table rounds – “just anything pertinent that happened overnight” – interrupting any discussion of non-acute issues, dismissing questions concerning current management, declining to see any of the patients as he had to pick his child up from a half day at school.
Yesterday we were post call, to round at 7am so that those of us who stayed overnight could get home without breaking duty hours. Our attending sauntered in at 11:20am. Yes, 11:20am. Meaning we all sat in the hospital for over 4 uneventful hours waiting for him. Again, no apology. He did at least stoop to see the patients – but his exam consisted of prodding a few bellies, listening to the heart in one place for less than 2 seconds, to the belly for a beat.
I am disappointed, discomfited, disgusted. It is all I can do to brightly meet his gaze as he bids us farewell.
“Page with any questions. See you tomorrow,” he says as he shuts the door.
“Sure thing,” our senior nods. “I’m sure we’ll see you then,” she mutters as the sound of his wingtips clicks distantly away down the hall.