I used to wonder why the NFL chose Monday night to have games. I think the picture says it all, Mondays totally suck, so they probably thought we all needed a little relief from total insanity that night. Mondays in the ER are so bad, that I have often wanted to ask my hospital for special hazard pay for Monday mornings.
First sign of trouble, you have the people who partied too hard all weekend and are now too lazy to actually go to work. Yet for some reason, they still want to hold on to their job = “I need a work excuse”. I once had an attending in residency tell me that if we could put three baskets out in the waiting room (1. Work notes, 2. Pregnancy tests, 3. Narcotics) that we would effectively cut down at least 75% of ER congestion. How true! But, in the end these are easy to deal with and at least a sign that we’re not in a full blown depression just yet.
Second sign, you get all the people who were wrongly brave enough to try to go to work instead of knowing when to take a sick day. No that chest pain probably isn’t “just indigestion” from wolfing down your 1300 calorie, 67gms of fat McDonald’s Deluxe breakfast in your car on the freeway this morning. No, in the timeless words of Fred Sanford, this is probably “the big one” my friend. In fact, studies have shown that up to 20% more people die from heart attacks on a Monday than any other day. At least one of these studies also shows that on any given Saturday there are 64% more injuries and traumas than the daily average coming into the ER as a direct result of the effects of alcohol. That about sums up much of my week – dealing with alcohol related stupidity.
Third sign, all the nursing home patients that were “forgotten” over the weekend and consequently got worse, “necessitating” an ER evaluation on Monday morning as well. These people are usually sick messes of urosepsis, dehydration, electrolyte imbalances (choose your favorite combo!) and the occasional pneumonia. Gee, just another 2+ hour work-up in my already full ER!
And finally, the fourth sign that its Monday – all the administrative/”executive” people come back after you’ve spent the whole weekend trying to forget their annoying presence in your life. Is it just me, or does seeing them again after a two day vacation from their “memos” and “customer service survey reports” equal more cruel and unusual punishment than 5 cursing drunks on a Friday night?