Newly minted doctor Jane McGill is in hell.
Not literally, of course. But between her drug addict patients, sleepless nights on call, and battling wits with the sadistic yet charming Sexy Surgeon, Jane can’t imagine an afterlife much worse than her first month of medical internship at County Hospital.
And then there’s the devil herself: Jane’s senior resident Dr. Alyssa Morgan. When Alyssa becomes absolutely hell-bent on making her new interns pay tenfold for the deadly sin of incompetence, Jane starts to worry that she may not make it through the year with her soul or her sanity still intact.
To Grin and Bear It
You might think becoming a doctor is hard work. It is. You have to study a lot and earn good grades and work hard, and everything else you’d assume would be true. But that’s not the real reason why it’s so hard.
The culture of medical training is that the people higher up on the totem pole are allowed, nay, encouraged, to abuse people below them. This can be exemplified with a single story:
Several years ago, a female colleague of mine was doing her surgery rotation as a medical student. She was scrubbed in for a surgery and assigned the stereotypical med student job of holding the retractor.
About three hours into the surgery, the student had been standing in one place without moving longer than she’d have thought humanly possible. She didn’t dare lift her fingers from the retractor, for fear that the surgeon would scream at her. It was at this time that a lock of her hair somehow managed to escape from underneath her surgical cap. This was noticed by the surgeon. And instead of telling her to fix her hair, the surgeon simply reached out and snipped off her hair with a surgical scissors!
This is what it’s like. There are people responsible for medical training who think that it’s more appropriate to cut off your student’s hair than to simply ask her to fix it.
And if you want to become a doctor, you have no choice but to grin and bear it.
(And no, I have no idea where the hair fell. And yes, it’s probably worse to have a lock of hair plummet into your patient’s abdomen than it is to have it hanging loose from the student’s head.)
Freida McFadden is a physician who has finally finally finally come to the end of her training and is still intact to write about it.