Musings of a Gaijin MD

Life in Japan as a Foreign Doctor

Morning Report: Crickets’ Chirping September 18, 2011

Filed under: Hospital — GaijinMD @ 10:42 AM

Image via Wikipedia

While I had been forewarned that the residents are usually very quiet during morning report, I was still not as prepared as I should have been.  For one, I had a pleasant surprise during the interns’ morning report in that they actually interacted and participated very well, so well that my first morning report ran over time.

When the morning reports started to combine all levels of residents, however, the situation changed.  No longer were people as engaging and forthright.  Many times, residents would not ask any questions of the history.  Then, asking them for a summary statement and differential diagnoses was like pulling teeth.

I’ve considered why they do not speak up.  Perhaps it’s Japanese culture not to speak up very much, more of a passive listening type of learning?  Perhaps they are not comfortable with speaking in English?  Perhaps they are scared that they may say something wrong in front of their upper levels and attendings (although whenever they do speak up, their questions/answers are appropriate)?  The real underlying reason(s) are probably a mixture of all the above.

Well, no more mister-nice-guy.  Instead of having them volunteer for the above information, I started to call on people.  Now, a big problem with doing that for me is that I can’t speak any Japanese so, therefore, Japanese names are very hard for me to learn.  I’ve started to take the resident roster poster with everyone’s name and picture to the morning reports so that I could call on them.

Which brings us to the next problem: some of the residents’ photos don’t look like how they appear in real life.  *Scratching head*  My boss’s solution: casually walk around the room and when I want to pick on someone, just tap on their shoulder without needing to call their name.  Genius!  🙂


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