Thursday, May 29, 2008

Nocturnalist admissions

…According to Laura Landro, WSJ, May 28, 2008, doctors called nocturnalists are being hired to man the night shift in hospitals and ICUs, where sparse coverage tends to result in that death thing in way too many cases.

…Nocturnalist? HA loves the name and the puns.

…Half to 70% of patients are admitted at night—to what? Who pays attention to them in these critical first hours? Heart attack patients who arrive at night are 66% less likely to get an artery-clearing angioplasty when it could do the most good (the first 90 minutes). Strokes also need to be treated within 2 hrs.

…These nocturnalists are a subspecies of hospitalist, the new-fangled doctor who works only in the hospital since many physicians no longer take care of their sickest patients who have to be hospitalized.

…HA is not a hospitalist-lover. Don’t ask. Probably one of her crazy oversimplifications—but it happened because of every hospitalist she has met so far.
Latest example:

…But she digresses. On the plus side, one doc interviewed said being on the night shift gave him more time to think about the patient’s situation. That sounds positive.

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