Sunday, August 22, 2010

Culture Shock

Enfermera, hable por favor! 

The abrupt realization that I was in a clinic with lots of Spanish speaking patients had now become evident. The first few days had me shocked when the providers would yell those words down the hall for a translator who would arrive moments later.

Lessons in Living

Initially, I had no idea what to expect. With so many foreign patients frequenting this long standing walk-in clinic, translation was a normal part of the experience. The patients never seem to mind and usually chuckle at the doctor's attempts to communicate translated or not. His clientele of all backgrounds has come to love the medicine he practices which has been evidenced to me time and time again. When they tell me he has been their doctor since they were born, the doctor reminds them that's not long at all. He has taken care of six generations in some families!

When I'm asked what kind of doctor I want to be (usually referring to specialty), I reply "a good one." I don't think that means I will practice perfect medicine or always be right, but to me it means I will be appreciated for what I can do. The patients determine a doctor's reputation in the community, not the doctor. No matter their socioeconomic standing, they deserve adequate care and if they are satisfied, word will spread. This month in family medicine has been a unique experience in caring for patients medically and even more so in cultural awareness. All I can think is that one day it will by my turn to make a difference, will I rise to the occasion?

Question of the Week

A researcher is investigating the distribution of goblet cells in the respiratory system. She injects dye that will be picked up by goblet cells into an animal model. Where is the dye most likely to be absent?

A. Intrapulmonary bronchi
B. Larynx
C. Nasopharynx
D. Terminal bronchioles
E. Trachea
Answer & Explanation


  1. I don't do this for everyone, but I'll do it for you muneebers, 'cause I like you. And I'll throw in a punto uno for good measure.

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