Physician and Nurse burn-out – part III  Obnoxious pinging

Historians claim that we wouldn’t be able to stand the atrocious stench that arose from the open gutters of the Middle Ages cities, except for a few that had sewers. Likewise the inhabitants of those same cities would quickly become demented if they were subjected to the humongous noise pollution that we get in public spaces. Steadily yet alarmingly we have become accustomed to multiple noises that creep from all the portable and fixed electronic devices that crowd all the available space.

In our new book Emotional Frustration-the hushed plague, we discussed the trolling toll of Technology (that’s the title of the chapter) in our daily lives, especially after the invasion of the small screens in 2007—those ubiquitous mind-snatchers. Almost all our human relationships have been drastically changed by the gawking at those devices that continually transmit all kinds of information—as well as dis-information—to our minds; at the same time they function as surreptitious emitting antennas that transmit our preferences, contacts, choices, inquiries, to total strangers.

One of the most frustrating experiences that many medical professionals encounter at present is the inability to concentrate properly to fill the humongous amount of paperwork that public and private payors demand to reimburse their care services. For years physicians and nurses have had to write comprehensive medical notes where the main complaints—and all the accompanying modifiers of diagnoses—had to be carefully and honestly described for all kind of care reviewers, including the administrative personnel of the institution and the utilization  review specialists. We discussed in another blog about data how once the patient leaves our office, a torrent of medical information is instantaneously shared out with multiple digital endpoints.

In order to comply with all those strict requirements—especially with the time-sensitive parameters of Electronic Medical Records (EMR)—those professionals need to put some distance with all the noise pollution from colleagues’ and patients’ devices. Who can reasonably focus on an accurate clinical description of a serious illness or a major procedure when there is a multi-faceted explosion of pinging all around? The least we can expect is to have some quiet to reflect on our very difficult choices. The brutal demand of our time should not be synonymous with its constant sullying out.

Like the “loose lips” of World War II, those “loose noises” can still sink our ships.

What do you think? Please tell us.

Don’t leave me alone.