The discharge paperwork was still warm from the printer when I arrived at the patient’s bedside. Her work-up was simple; something that easily could have been treated at her PCP’s. But she couldn’t go to her PCP, because she was new to the area, or she didn’t like her doctor, or she was between doctors, or she called them up and they couldn’t fit her in until April 2032…I forget. Something like that. I digress…
I began reading over the doctor’s notes, created using that new “speech-to-text” dictation program. Simple patient, simple assessment, simple treatment, simple discharge. Right?
“…if the infection does not improve over the next few days, please return and we will…” I paused. I stifled a giggle, bit my lip, and excused myself from the room. I scurried back to the nurses’ station, taking a seat next to the doctor and passing him his discharge notes.
“Really, Doc? Seems a little desperate, don’t you think?” I asked. He shot me a confused look. “Discharge notes, at the bottom. Read.”
“‘If the infection does not improve over the next few days, please return and we will…ask the Catholics’?? What? No! I said ‘Prescribe Keflex.’ Damn software…”
“I was gonna say, I didn’t think her infection was quite that bad yet.”