In the comments on the last post Old MD Girl rightly pointed out: It is our job to care.
Last week's Friday Links was dedicated to the humanitarian response after the earthquake in Haiti. That disaster awakened the sympathy and generosity of the world, but the news cycle moves on. Each day the updates on Port-au-Prince get shorter and shorter until in a week or two you won't hear any more at all. We might just assume everything is better. The fact is that our neighbor Haiti was a humanitarian disaster even before quake. "Port-au-Prince, on a good day, looks semi-destroyed."
It is our job to care, but we often forget.
So for this week's Friday Links I give you: Doctor John Carroll and his wife Maria.
Doctor Carroll is twice the physician I am. He is an ER doctor in Illinois who has been going to Haiti for 15 years and finding children with life threatening congenital heart conditions that he brings to the US for surgery. Johh and Maria have an organization named Haitian Hearts that it appears they run completely by themselves. They have saved thousands of lives. They were in Haiti before the quake and will be there after.
Doctor D once met John Carroll, long ago when D was a college student. John Carroll sat down with young D and spoke to him about caring for patients. He was the first doctor that D ever met that he wanted to be like. After meeting John Carroll, D went home and signed up for the MCAT.
Well, I'm a doctor now, but unfortunately I'm still nowhere near the kind of person that John Carroll is.
Finding John's blog Dying in Haiti and Maria's blog Live from Haiti has been a breath of fresh air for Doctor D. Sometimes I forget why I chose this profession. My caring gets worn out and jaded. The Carrolls are a constant reminder of medicine at it's best. The Carrolls' stories of their work and their patients are inspiring. John's bravery and his uncompromising stand for his patients just might be infectious.
Seriously, you should subscribe to these blogs. Don't forget those who are suffering, and for those of us that work in healthcare don't forget why we do this.
John Carroll is a real hero for Doctor D. I might not be an MD if it weren't for him. Do any of you other healthcare worker have heroes like this? I would love to hear about them in the comments.