When the art of medicine becomes business as usual

It’s Saturday morning, the last day of my 6-day workweek. Twelve hours have elapsed since I finished my previous shift at the after-hours care center. I step in through the front door, valise in hand, to find my assistant seated behind the reception desk. “How does it look?” I ask him.

“Ten appointments so far,” he says, “last one at 10:30 a.m.”

I do a quick mental calculation — roughly 9 minutes allotted for each patient. And there’s no telling how many additional walk-ins might show up over the course of the morning. more»

Interested readers can now access my latest Art of Medicine column — When the art of medicine becomes business as usual — recently published in the Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants.

Please note that all of my previously published Humane Medicine pieces can now be accessed here.

Snow Ghosts

Morning snowflakes dapple
Gnarled naked branches
Then cascade down,
Deluging the landscape
In white.

I clear the driveway,
Move the car,
Shovel again;
Step inside,
Now numb from cold.

At noon the wind whips up
Over frozen fallow fields:
Snow ghosts
Suddenly rise and swirl
Above rows of cornstalk stubble—

Phantoms form,
Dart, dash, drive—
Then dissipate
Into a windbreak
Of winter trees.

1/9/2015

2015©Brian T. Maurer