Friday, August 3, 2007

NOD Duty and Bad Hair Day

I had NOD (Nurse of the Day) duty Wednesday and Thursday which means I wake up extra-early on Thursday and Friday so I can make rounds of the inpatient wards and report to the Senior Nurse Executive so he or his representative can brief the Commanding Officer.

Of course, Thursday morning the power went out at 0423. My alarm was scheduled to go off at 0500. Nervous that I might oversleep, I set the duty cellphone to alarm as well as pray the back-up battery in the alarm clock would still go off. Needless to say, I did not sleep well those last 37 minutes. Then I had to make the decision whether I would go to work and shower or simply wash up at the sink because there was no power to run my blow dryer. I looked at my hair by flashlight and decided my unwashed hair would look better than air-dried clean hair. I vowed I would not look in any mirrors all day and I would tell anyone who made comments on my hair that it was due to a power outage and not a complete disregard for professionalism.

When I talked to Gregg that evening, he said the power still hadn't come on by lunch time. And no one said anything about my hair.

The only interesting and sad event on my watch was the death of an 18 year old local male who was brought in by ambulance (BIBA) with a pellet gunshot wound (GSW). In the Guam PDN, police were withholding the type of weapon used pending an investigation mainly because no one dies from a pellet gun... This particular pellet managed to transect the aorta and lung. When the ER crew inserted a chest tube, one liter of blood came out. This young man essentially died of cardiac tamponade.

Yesterday's NOD would have had an interesting duty as well because a 29-year old Japanese tourist nearly drowned at Fish Eye (I saw the ambulance and fire truck and saw them pulling the victim from the water on a gurney as I drove home yesterday) and a pedestrian was transported to Naval Hospital following a hit-and-run in Agat.

I much prefer the uneventful watch because any "excitement" for hospital personnel entails a very bad day---much worse than bad hair---for everyone else.