Saturday, September 19, 2009

There is No Doctor Shortage, Only a Sleep Surplus

I recently came across an article describing how Australian doctors are made to work longer hours. Apparently the health authority has decided that doctors can work 80 hour work weeks if they just drink 6 cups of coffee a day.

Of course, this health authority wants to assure everyone that they are not in their ivory tower creating esoteric advice that doesn't apply to real world situations. They add that they realize drinking that much coffee is "not always feasible or realistic"; their solution: physicians should take caffeine pills instead.

Seriously? There is a health authority in a respected, developed country that thinks the answer to a doctor shortage is to force doctors awake with a stimulant so that they can work longer hours? What's next? I mean, cocaine is a better stimulant than caffeine...if they still have a doctor shortage maybe the health authority can strike a deal with a Colombian cartel?

Oh, and side effects of caffeine can be anxiety, insomnia, and agitation...the exact qualities I'm looking for in my physician...

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