Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Patient Safety and Organization of the Sensory Nervous System

Our FCM class this morning was about patient safety. We met in our small groups first, and we were given a case to read about a patient who had gotten a morphine overdose in the hospital. It was pretty similar to one of our PBL cases, actually. We've covered this topic several times already, so it wasn't too hard for us to come up with ways to improve the system to make it harder for these kinds of errors to occur. Afterward, the whole class got back together to hear a lecture on improving patient safety. This would have been unremarkable except for a comment by one of the preceptors, who is a surgeon. With typical surgeon arrogance, he proclaimed that the morphine overdose was clearly due to the nurse who administered it being incompetent. As if surgeons don't ever screw anything up, say, by leaving towels inside of patients. That's a man who I can definitely envision getting sued for all he's worth at some point in his career.

Our seminar was really good. We came into the library classroom to hear Celine Dion blasting on the stereo (which wasn't so really good), and all of the chairs organized in a circle in the middle of the room. The speaker had brought a neurology resident with him, and he demonstrated several neurological exams on her to illustrate the cases that we were discussing. I think that this was one of the better seminars we've had since we came to CCLCM. I'm still kind of disappointed that we were learning about touch instead of vision, but we'll apparently get to vision next year. And touch did turn out to be a more interesting subject than I had expected it to be.

After seminar, about half of the class went to the Internal Medicine noon conference. I don't think I've told you about those. They are hour-long clinical talks held at lunchtime every day, and the salient thing about them is that free food is served. Each day has its own standard menu: stir-fry on Mondays, Lebanese on Tuesdays, and so on. One of my classmates discovered this and told all of the rest of us about them. Now a bunch of us have started going. Today's talk was about prenatal care for pregnant women. It was actually pretty interesting. And the Lebanese food was excellent.

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