Monday, November 27, 2006


Last night I was on call for Jo again, and it's really making me relearn my Emergency, acute general practice and ward stuff - very good for me. We've realised how much Jo's skills and my skills complement each other - Jo is very good on procedural, anaesthetic type things, where as I'm much more comfortable with the broad general practice stuff. It means that we both think we look like complete dingbats on the ward for different reasons!

I've found it interesting being in a hospital environment again. I don't feel at home there, and I've realised how the context changes your consultation skills - it's very easy to be much more doctor centred interviewing someone on a bed. I've taken to using one particular room in the Emergency ward as it looks more like a GP room, and I know how to use that environment effectively.

(This may sound weird, but there's a whole literature on consulting skills which we teach doctors training to be GPs which definitely makes them more effective (as well as popular with patients). And consulting skills overlap with, but are separate to, communication skills. Consulting skills are about managing what we grandly term "The Consultation" which encompasses using the room, the roles of the people involved, using the computer, using the time....etc.....etc. Communication skills is the part which involves talking with, and much more importantly listening to, the other person. I'm glad that's cleared up, then.)

It was a busy weekend on call. There was a big football tournament (football=rugby league here) this weekend, so we saw all sorts of twisted knees and injured shoulders. Apparently the winning team get $10,000 each! That's more than Jo gets paid for me being on call.

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