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It is that time of year, when all the paper work goes flying in the air, and you spend sleepless nights in front of the computer, sharing, scanning, uploading and submitting the documents for the ARCP (annual review of competence progression) before the deadline.
I appreciate the time and energy invested by various consultants over these long, tiring days, which roll on for weeks and months.
I am currently working as a psychiatry trainee. At the recent ARCP, I had to face a panel of seven members. I was not only shocked and overwhelmed by the large number of consultants and non-medics in the room, but also felt extremely anxious — wondering what each one of them was going to ask me. I dreaded the thought of how long the process was going to last.
Needless to say, I only knew a couple of the panel members. In the end, it all went well, with an expected ARCP outcome.
But the thing that made me reflect on this particular experience was the feeling of déjà vu it prompted with regard to patients’ experiences and the subtle lack of empathy that we sometimes have towards those we care for.
Patients in psychiatry units go through a similar scenario during inpatient ward rounds. They walk hesitantly (carrying with them various psychopathologies) into the meeting room, to be met by so many unfamiliar faces. They are asked various questions from different members of the MDT (multidisciplinary team), and are invited to hold conversations.
I could not have empathised more with my patients when I was put in a similar situation, and questioned randomly by the consultants.
Towards the end of the interview, I was kindly given the opportunity to clarify any queries, but I hesitated to speak — thereby avoiding the possibility of uttering anything that could have appeared like a big blurt.
I am glad that at least some of the ward rounds in a few hospitals have changed in the past few months so that consultants see patients individually, instead of inviting them to a room full of MDT members.
Although trainees might not be unwell in the way that their patients are, I feel they might benefit from their ARCP meetings being held in a less daunting environment, such as their place of work, thereby giving the observer a true sense of their worth.
Uma Rani Padmanabhi is a specialty trainee 2 in psychiatry in Hampshire
This is an amazing type of post.
There should be no absence of empathy in the field of medical as I guess. Well, there are many specialists who lose tamper due to sudden unspecific situation. I recommend them to visit www.essaywritingnz.com/ website for cutting down the problems of their thesis and tight deadlines.