Meet your first friend in residency: The Pager
Do you remember that device that was famous just before the release of the first cellphone in the 90s? Yes, That is the pager and it has come back to life and you will be using it in your residency. In 2012, about 7 million US dollars were spent on new pagers in the USA!
I really have no explanation to why this ancient device is used nowadays to call doctors. It seems they haven't yet figured out a better way to reach out physicians without listing their personal cellphone number. To be honest, it is advantageous not to have your number out everywhere but for some reason the pager's ringing tone is bothersome to more than 90% of physicians.
You might have some difficulty dealing with it at the beginning as it has only five buttons and you have to figure out how to read the messages, delete, change settings and set the clock whenever your battery runs out. Easiest way out is to give it a try when you start residency or just ask your upper level.
The pager is one of the miseries of residency, some interns think it is the worst part indeed. At some point you just want to throw it in the bin because it keeps on ringing and you get slammed. The other explanation, nurses are just bonded together and have telepathic skills where they all want to contact you at the same time. Don’t get frustrated if you get that many pages. All you have to do is stay calm and answer one at a time. I have seen some interns get crazy when they get three pages at the same time. Always remember that if a patient is dying, the nurses would be calling rapid response whom will be there quickly and you will be also paged to follow. If you want to make sure that the nurses love you for ever, answer their pages within 5 minutes and you will be on the safe side.
While writing this article, I ran into some funny pages that I found over the internet and thought of sharing it with you.