Ahem, well this post is kind of a confession or an rather an understanding. Last year, I had posted about the end of the days of legible handwriting and the beginning of the scrawling era, i.e. “ Last days of Scrawling ? Not Yet !!” Well, working in the present situation as to being the only doctor attending rounds, monitoring the in-patients and handling the emergency department, it’s not possible to keep the pen at a standard pace on paper. Being a rural hospital not many doctors will volunteer for helping out on a regular basis. The main consultants that even work here, do so only on a two hourly, five days a week basis. So the daily routine of taking the a.m. and p.m. rounds falls on me.
Initially, the notes were legible and orders were pretty distinct. But as the emergencies pile in and the number of in-patients increased the scrawl pretty much came back into play. Earlier I never understood why my senior doctors wrote so brashly, but now I am doing pretty much the same. The solution obviously is to hire another doctor to share the load, but that’s out of question at the present. So now after scrawling down the orders, all the files land on my desk wherein I take my time and complete the notes, “legibly” and in capitals. The worst case scenario comes the patients get transferred over. Computerized records are not possible at present thanks to the fact, that I am working in a rural place in India. Electricity itself 24 x 7 is a rarity. So far the prescriptions are safe, thanks to the habit of writing in caps, but it is not feasible for me to do so for ward notes. During the transferring of the case notes to higher centers ; I have nightmares “what if it was read as…”. Obviously, logically the easiest thing would be to write legibly, but it is easier said than done for me, at present.
Handwriting woes !!! Why can’t the neurons send electrified signals though the air, so that whatever we say gets automatically set down in writing (only when we want it to), a pretty unreasonable demand, I know !!! Recently, I have started writing legibly (hopefully), but when the calls come-in haywire then I am back to square one. The best permanent solution to this would be to voice-write the orders ( technology, need help). Until then, all I can pray is for legible scrawls and less written hazards. Really need a lot of luck at my fingertips and grace right now. Amen.