Pulse: Voices from the Heart of Medicine is a lovely site publishing literary work pointed at health, wellness, illness, and care to “[foster] the humanistic practice of medicine.” Overwhelmed with healthcare poetry, Pulse paused on poetry submissions for some time. The time has come to submit your healthcare poems, though.
A single author can send up to three poems – each as separate attachments – to email@example.com by November 13, 2013. Submissions are accepted from all. Editors will review the submissions and notify authors of acceptances or declines during December 2013 and January 2014. Accepted poems will appear in publication during 2014 and 2015. There are specific submission details that all interested authors should follow; please see Pulse’s submission guidelines for poetry (or haiku or prose or other categories) for additional information.
Will you submit a piece to Pulse? I hope so.
End of the day.
Full of work.
Yours was the same.
The doors open to release me.
The fresh, evening air welcomes me.
I push out, out, out.
But your current is stronger, pulling you in, in, in.
Your day has become longer than mine,
Your face wrinkled with worry.
One, two, three, four, five.
The current of your family and friends within pulls you further in, in, in.
I count my blessings as I move against the current.
A catch in his voice.
A tremble of his chin.
He shuffles, shuffles trying to redirect his attention.
Weeks of pain – eternity encompassed in minutes.
He clears his throat.
A handkerchief catches a lone tear.
He grasps at the memory of her.
Afraid to lose her again.
I’m not sure when it happened, but it seems like algorithms and “pathways” have overtaken healthcare. I’m not complaining; I love it. I’m a visual person, so when people explain processes to me, I tend to draw them as I’m listening or reviewing my notes. I’ve found that algorithms turn gray processes and care to black and white. They clarify exactly what everyone can and should do rather than leave that information in one person’s head. I frequently make – and revise – algorithms. They’re easy, artful, practical, and just plain smart work.
I make algorithms one of two ways – in Microsoft Visio or in Microsoft PowerPoint. You could also use Microsoft Publisher, but I prefer not to use it for algorithm creation simply because I know PowerPoint shortcuts and tools much better. Visio is intended to develop algorithms and pathways. It’s incredibly easy to use (especially if you know how to use PowerPoint or Publisher) and takes all the guesswork out of making straight lines and centering text. If you don’t have Visio but make a lot of algorithms (or are planning to do so), purchasing Visio is well worth the investment. No, Microsoft Visio is not paying me for this article; I just love Visio that much. I know, it’s geekily comical. I am unashamed.
If you don’t have Visio, you can still develop your algorithms in PowerPoint. It may take a little longer than Visio, but hey – it works. Open a blank file. You’ll only need to use one PowerPoint slide for this. Start adding your quadrilateral shapes, overlaid text boxes, and add in arrows. Capture or highlight all the items on the slide, group them, and then right-click to save the file as a picture to then insert into other documents. It’s pretty easy once you get the hang of it.
Do you use or create algorithms in your healthcare setting?
My day today didn’t necessarily deserve this card, but trust me, I have had pah-lenty days where this card would have been more than appropriate. I hope you never have to give it to someone, but chances are, there’s someone you work alongside that really needs a good laugh – or at least needs to know someone is thinking of her or him.
You can download and this card for free.
I know you feel like quitting. Maybe not now. Maybe exactly right now. If you don’t really want to quit, then don’t.
Download it, and pass it on.