Thursday, September 30, 2010

Anonymous in Atlanta

This week’s interview requested that she be kept anonymous, for security purposes.
She was a Physicians Assistant in the large hospital I work in, before she transferred to Atlanta.

Susan assists with a lot of surgeries, so she is dealing with not only her own stress, but the heightened stress of the patients, as well as the doctors. So her job is very stressful. Honestly though, she either has a really good mask or really handles stress well. You wouldn’t think she has a care in the world, to talk to her. So I asked her about it.

She said that her two biggest stressors are making sure that her patients’ needs are met in a timely manner. This would include medications, pre or post-operative care, to just making sure they are comfortable. If there is anyone who can put an ailing person at ease it is Susan.

Always the joker, she certainly can’t be accused of taking things too seriously. She’s always got a prank or a joke up her sleeve. I can guarantee that you won’t spend 2 minutes with her before you start laughing.

Though I couldn’t imagine it, I asked her if she ever had disagreements with anyone, staff or patient, and how she handled such altercations.

“Aside from cussing them out?” she asks. Then she explains, “physicians and doctors have egos, you have to be careful not to bruise their egos, let them know [that your way might be better] in a non-threatening way.”

She says her best ways of releasing stress are grinding her teeth, Peruvian coffee beans and humor. She has her gal pals. She always knows where the party is. She says good people make all the difference. She cites my cardinal rule, Leave work at work.

c. 2010


  1. This is the kind of physician's assistant that I want when I'm a patient -- knows how to handle stress and makes sure the patient is comfortable -- good insight from her - thanks for this post!

  2. thanks kristen! indeed, susan is the one you want on your side...b