Friday, September 5, 2008

Grand Rounds

Grand rounds are a time-honored tradition of medicine, an age-old practice that even predates waiting rooms and breezy hospital gowns. Formerly, grand rounds were led by a wizened clinician who would present a patient's case to the group of attending physicians, fellows, residents, and students. The group would meet in the hospital, discuss the case, then go see the patient.

Sadly, that type of grand rounds has gone the way of leeches, lobotomies, and the four humors. Today, grand rounds typically consist of that same group meeting in an auditorium somewhere and discussing the patient's case. . .but without ever seeing the patient. Some dumpy auditorium and no visiting patients? Maybe grands rounds are neither grand nor rounds.

So then what are they? Last week, I got the chance to find out.

I got up extra early on a Wednesday morning and made my way over to UCSD's campus, to Liebow Auditorium, where these supposed grand rounds were to be held. Much to my chagrin, I had actually heard this same exact lecture twice already from the same presenter. And there was no discussion whatsoever of any patient's case. Luckily, there was food.

Afterward, I had to hoof it back over to Thornton Hospital for my day's work. Despite it being only 9:00 am, it was already blazing hot and humid outside, and I was in my dress clothes and white coat.

This is the route I was forced to take. You'll notice the drastic northward deviation I had to make in order to cross I-5. You'll also notice I ended up passing through a rather unfortunate locale there near the baseball field. I was running late, and if climbing over a giant mound of whatever is the only way to get to work on time, then that's what I'll have to do.

Basically, I've decided that the term "Grand Rounds" must actually refer to the following three things:

1. The approximate shape of my route to Thornton Hospital.

2. What I'd like to fire off at the person who decided that spot was perfect for a compost heap.

3. The waste products of the various animals through which I was forced to walk.

Anything in the name of patient care.


Annette said...

Two questions -- are you making this up and was this mad dash made on foot? Also one more, does google maps always note the location of compost heaps?

I hope your patients and fellow medical persons appreciated your efforts.

Matt said...

No, I am absolutely not making this up, and yes I was on foot. Honest.