Calibrations Always Go Up And Down

, , | Healthy | November 27, 2017

(It’s the night shift in the hospital lab. I’m the scientist doing the nightly calibrating of our analyzers’ drug screen when the ER requests a drug screen, which I can’t run until I finish my calibrations; once I start, I can’t stop. We tell them it will be done as soon as possible, and we’ll rush the sample, which they’re okay with. Meanwhile, some plumbers are working on one of our sinks. The lead scientist comes to my bench to check on my progress and get a better ETA to tell the doctors.)

Lead Scientist: “How’s it coming over here?”

Me: “I’m almost ready. I just need to do cocaine and marijuana.”

Lead Scientist: *without missing a beat* “[My Name], you know better than to mix uppers and downers.”

(The plumbers all went silent and turned to look at us. I hope they didn’t think we were actually doing drugs.)

Something Doesn’t Clicky

, | Healthy | November 26, 2017

(I am fifteen and fortunate enough to be able to attend the birth of my baby sister with my dad. This takes place only an hour after she is born.)

Doctor: “Now, Mrs. [Mum], is it all right if a student doctor does the examination on your baby?”

Mum: “Yes, of course; they have to practice!”

Doctor: “[Student]! You can come in now!

Student: *examines my baby sister and then looks worried* “I’m going to refer [Sister] here. She is exhibiting signs of clicky hips.”

Mum: “Should we be worried? [My Name] didn’t have any of that. Is it going to affect her as she gets older?!”

Student: “It’s likely she’ll just have a little fabric harness. It’s easily corrected.”

(Two weeks later we are sitting in a clinic room in the hospital waiting for the doctor. My mum sits next to a lady with a toddler and a baby not much older than my sister.)

Lady: “Hello, why are you here?”

Mum: “We’ve been referred. Apparently, [Sister] has clicky hips.”

Lady: *looks surprised* “Same here! Did you have [Student] examine her?”

Mum: “Yes, that was him!”

Lady: “I’ve talked to three other ladies who’ve been referred, and each of their babies have absolutely nothing wrong. I’m betting it’s the same for our two!”

(It turned out the student had referred about twenty mothers over the two days he’d been in the department, and none of their babies had clicky hips!)

Has To Be Some Kind Of Record

, , | Healthy | November 25, 2017

Customer: “I need my birth record in order to request a new Social Security card, because I don’t have a copy of my birth certificate.”

(This is a fairly common request, so I nod as I look over his Release of Information to make sure all the fields have been completed. Before I get to the end, he adds:)

Customer: “I wasn’t actually born at this hospital. Does that matter?”

(Yes, it matters. He left empty-handed.)

County The Ways

, , | Healthy | November 24, 2017

(I work for a non-profit medical clinic. Because the county we operate in provides a pretty broad range of services, we have a lot of patients who labor under the belief that we are associated with the county. We are not and never have been. I overhear my colleague who is working the front desk engaging with a patient.)

Patient: “So you’re part of the county, right?”

Colleague: “No, we are in no way associated with the county.”

Patient: “Oh, so you contract with them?”

Colleague: “No. We are not contracted by, subcontract with, or in any way work for or answer to the county.”

Patient: “So, you’re subcontracted with the county.”

Colleague: “No, we are not. We are in no way, shape, or form any part of the county services.”

Patient: *sounding confused* “Oh.”

(A moment later.)

Patient: “So can you send [paperwork] through this fax machine?” *gestures at printer*

Colleague: “That isn’t a fax machine.”

Patient: “Can you fax it from here?”

Colleague: “No, we do not have a fax machine here.”

Patient: *confused* “Oh.”

(After the patient has been called in to see the provider.)

Me: *to Colleague, teasing* “So hey, [Colleague], aren’t we part of the county?”

Colleague: *throws hands in the air* “Apparently!”

Me: “Someone should tell [Boss]. He won’t have to worry about that [specific] grant anymore!”

Millennial Problems Don’t Have Legs To Stand On

, , | Healthy | November 24, 2017

(I’m 20, and I use a wheelchair because my leg muscles can’t support me. I’m at the grocery store with my boyfriend and talking to someone at the bakery who we know personally when a woman walks up to us.)

Woman: “Oh, another lazy teen. Why can’t you just walk normally?”

Me: “Uhm, because I have a medical condition?”

Woman: “Don’t you lie! You just don’t wanna walk like everyone else!”

Boyfriend: “She can’t even stand up without assistance. She’s not lazy.”

Woman: “Oh, so you’re in on this, too?!” *looks at bakery clerk* “Do you see what this generation is doing?!”

Clerk: “Yeah, people who regularly see a doctor about their medical problems. She’s been in a wheelchair since I met her.”

Woman: “UGH! LAZY ENTITLED BRATS!” *storms off*

(We laugh after she leaves. The bakery clerk gives us a couple baked goods for half off for the trouble.)

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