Working with difficult Physicians (and Mid-levels)

Good morning.

So from the title you can probably guess what todays post is about. Not every shift is fun in the sun and you may have a day where you work with a physician or midlevel that just doesn’t mesh well with your personality or does not take into consideration how fast a scribe can actually type or how long it takes to complete a patients chart. I like to refer to these providers as headaches.

Fortunately/unfortunately I have a few physicians that I have worked with that fits this to the T. It can be very uncomfortable and even make the shift more stressful.

What helps me get through these shifts is first getting to work early. Like earlier then early, just so I have time to decompress on my own before the provider arrives. This is the time when I go and get Starbucks (yes I am addicted and unashamed) or coffee from the break room. I also like to go and see what other scribe is working and talk with them for a bit. As you probably can tell, I love to chat with my co-workers and other hospital staff before the shift. This helps make the day more fun.

After the quick chat, I typically go to my work station and set up my laptop. I typically open the tracking board just so I can see what the flow of the ED is at during that particular time. This helps me to mentally prepare and keeps me calmer as I know ahead of time what I am about to walk into.

After that, I read some emails, read a few books online via my Kindle cloud and then around 10-5 minutes before my shift, I clock in and wait for my provider.

Some providers are early, while few are late. Once, the “headache” arrives, I typically say hello and then keep it professional. If the provider asks about my weekend, I keep it brief and let them know if we have any patients to see. This helps set the tone and makes the shift more durable.

During the shift, I try to use subtle cues to alert the provider of their speed by asking them to slow down. Some listen while others pretend they can’t hear me ( I know they can hear me because I have had nurses say they’ve heard me ask the provider to slow down multiple times). Mind you, I type 60-65 WPM. I also have a list I use to keep track of what patients we’ve seen and what’s pending on these patients. Live by the list, NEVER LOOS THE LIST.

At the end of these shifts, I typically never get off on time and end up staying no later then one hour after my shift to complete charts. #TheStruggleIsReal.