Letter to the Editor
In my relatively short 13-year career in EM, so much has changed about our “health care” system, but relatively little has changed about human nature or human suffering. I used quotation marks around the words health care because I find that nowadays so few of our duties have to do with health or caring.
As an emergency physician, I have witnessed many similar scenarios that were highlighted in Dr. Edwin Leap's recent column, “D/C: A Little More of the God's Honest Truth.” (EMN 2019;41:21; http://bit.ly/2TgtHwl.)
I specialize in dispensing motherly advice about getting their lives together to teenagers who land in my pediatric ED by way of poor choices, dysfunctional social situations, insufficient support systems, and inappropriate coping mechanisms. Parents who hear me delivering this advice have always been appreciative of what they perceive as my caring about their child, and they are correct: I do care! Are we really caring if we physically fix up a patient for the short-term but omit any long-term words of advice on how to avoid the revolving door—or worse?
Dr. Leap is a kind and wise soul and a thoughtful and honest writer. His writing makes me feel not so alone. I look forward to his columns every month in your publication, and honestly if I found that it wasn't there, I doubt that I would continue to browse the other articles.
Mercy Hylton, MD