After a morning in the hospital and being educated on Ebola, this afternoon was spent dictating letters. The pile is slowly building up again and I was trying to make a dent in it. I guess I should be grateful that I do not have to type my own letters – then it would be months before anybody saw anything from me! And my letters would probably be much shorter. I talk a lot. I find that when I am correcting my letters – I will take out much of what I originally said or rearrange the order in a way that seems more logical after I have had a day or two to reflect on the consultation or add in new information I have gathered from speaking to other professionals.
It’s alway a relief to finish dictating letters from a clinic and the sooner the dictation is complete the greater the sense of achievement. It is nice be able to honour the promises and commitments I have made to my patients and family. It is not so much fun when the letters take too long to come out or a parent takes issue with what is in the letter. Equally it is frustrating when it is clear that nobody has read the clinic letter! Sometimes I question who I am writing the letter for – who is my audience? Primarily the family of the child in my care, the professionals involved in the care and for me – to remind myself of my impression of the situation. A well written letter is so helpful when the child and family return for follow-up – a quick reminder of the previous consultation and management plan.