Monday, September 9, 2013

Direct feedback, work load, and random life news

A big difference between the learning environment and work is that if there is a problem, issue, or concern with a specimen then the feedback goes to me directly rather than through a staff PA (although, at the VA we were sitting in on sign out so that feedback was pretty direct). Sometimes things get filtered through my boss (ie: use "portion" instead of "fragment", things like that), but other times I look up to see a pathologist standing there holding a slide with a comment to make (ex: only one section of fallopian tubes for sterilization, that's all they need for verification...). Generally it is a fairly painless process and over pretty quickly. I'm glad that they're comfortable giving feedback and I'm working on keeping everything in mind.

Technically my hours are 1-5, but I'm getting leeway with that as I get up to speed. I tend to arrive around 12:30 and leave somewhere between 5 and 6. Every day there are some placentas (I think the highest so far in a single day was 11, but that was after a weekend), there are GIs, gallbladders, appendixes, and ortho specimens (humeral or femoral heads, knees, amputations). There are regularly hysterectomy specimens (the most in a single day has been four), segments of bowel for tumor or non-neoplastic (sometimes a couple a day), and a smattering of *breast cases. Sometimes there are kidneys, segments of lung, and the standard small larges. Oddly... not a lot of tonsils, but I guess those mostly go to an out patient surgery center somewhere.

Fuel economy makes a huge difference....
So... following up to my previous car accident announcement. My crossover was totaled (completely heartbreaking) and I'm still dealing with aches and pains (and an annoying host of medications) from it. But luckily, the gross room was set up for my boss after she had neck surgery so it is probably more ergonomic than it would have been otherwise. And I bought a new car, or rather a new used car since with my current commute I'd put a minimum of 37,000 miles on a car per year and a brand new one would lose all value after me having it for a year. I was shopping solely for fuel economy because of the 140 mile a day commute, so it ruled out most vehicles. I also needed something that would fit my human family plus my 120 lb dog, which ruled out sedans. I ended up with a hatchback Honda hybrid (alliteration!). The upside is that it saves me around $12 a day in gas costs (seriously...), the downside is that I really loved my old car and the space it gave me. Before the accident the idea had been floated to keep my old car and get a small commuter car, but the accident expedited the latter part and negated the former. Oh well. In a few years maybe technology will allow me to have a larger vehicle with excellent fuel economy.

*They use gel foam in the biopsy cavities, which makes it really easy to find the previous biopsy site. I'm a fan of that. Less of a fan that we don't have radiology on demand--it is easy to get spoiled with things like that... UNC had the capabilities in the gross room, they could do a quick scan to make sure they'd gotten all the staples out of an anastomosis section.

1 comment:

  1. Hi! Was going to try to email you but couldn't figure it out. Was wondering what your experience was with finding a job in the south. I'm from Greenville, went to USC! :) I graduate next year but was just curious, I wasn't sure if you had looked elsewhere or just close to where your family has previously lived, city or state wise? Thanks!