Second Sick Day Off, After Weekend Cover

I usually don’t take sick days off unless I really need them, but today seems to be one of those days that I have decided to call in sick. It is the second time I have called in sick in these last 1.5 years of work. I feel a little guilty however, since I’m not like actually dying, and could probably still go to work even though I would be extremely worn out and inefficient.

I suppose I was actually sick yesterday too, but decided to go into work anyway. Being a public holiday yesterday, and with two and a half pay, how could I not go into work? I wasn’t really that sick yesterday morning though, but late afternoon, I started sneezing and had terrible joint pains. Come the end of the day, and I was exhausted.

Being a public holiday, there were only 4 medical doctors on; the day consultant, an admitting registrar, the ward registrar, and the ward RMO (resident medical officer). My job was to see mostly well patients on the ward, while also getting called for ward jobs and reviews of patients that may need some attention on the ward by nurses. In total, I saw about 16 patients, did 4 cannulations, did two urgent discharge summaries, and attended to several other odd jobs like rewriting medication charts and the like.

I just churned through the list, and took my time to just have a chat with patients to identify any issues, and just a basic exam; all patients I saw got a chest, heart and abdominal examination. Mind you, many of these patients were actually well and didn’t have many issues, but needed some monitoring and review for things like bloods, hence that’s why even a lowly RMO could see these patients.

My shift started around 8 am, and ended at 8:30 pm, but I had pretty much seen all the patients by about 6pm, and then had to do other odd jobs that I had prioritized as last priority (which included rewrite of medical chart, and certifying a dead person). Certifying the dead person was actually quite spooky in a sense. The patient was in a body bag when I turned up, and had been dead for over 2 hours. On unzipping the body bag, and throwing the cover back, I came face to face with a ghastly pale and yellow face, with eyes closed. He felt cold to touch. On opening his eyes, I thought I could see the eye lens. HIs pupils were dilated, yet I could make out a slight shimmer, as if it was the lens of his eyes.

On finishing all jobs, I met the night RMO, and handed over just 3 easy jobs – essentially to chase bloods. I quickly headed off to one of my favourite restaurants (they close at 9pm), and got myself some Mexican food, and finished it at home. Switching the TV on, a movie was on; Freddy vs Jason. I watch for about half an hour, thinking to myself how ridiculous the movie was, with villains magically materializing from dreams. There’s nothing better to watch, so I just watch a bit more, and make my way to bed after a well deserved day (of working 12 hours).

Now I’m just looking forward to my upcoming pay check 🙂

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2 thoughts on “Second Sick Day Off, After Weekend Cover

  1. I think the culture of medicine has traditionally been about wearing yourself down and always putting medicine before self-care. Personally I feel that’s a pretty crappy way to practice and live, so I feel like a sick day was totally warranted. It’s important to take care of yourself 🙂

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