Risk and Change: Useful in an Emergency? #WILTW

This is the 105th #WILTW

A past president of the Royal College of General Practitioners and the Chief Transformation Officer of NHS England briefly debated change on twitter this week:

The imposition of change is a concept that everyone is not only familiar with, but also probably weary of.

Change energises risk takers?

This statement stuck with me. Change has been a  dirty word in the past, and to some, it still is. Currently many health care systems around the world are at breaking point. Something must give. Is it more change that is needed?

or is it something else? There is an innate desire in health care to improve; but improvement tends not to happen by chance alone. Either with something, by someone or just somehow, a change will need to occur.

Emergency Medicine is a dynamic and exciting career. The demand and pace of our work dictates that change is not an infrequent occurrence. Emergency Medicine is not a specialty that sits still. It is therefore not surprising that those in Emergency and Critical Care were the early adopters of the social media revolution that has transformed the delivery of education around the world. And while we never expose our patients to unnecessary risk we must live with risk all the time. Not every patient with a headache can be admitted, not every patient with a fever receive antibiotics.

Do we therefore potentially enjoy change? Is it in the blood of the emergency physician to relish trying different things in the same way there’s something appealing about not knowing what is going to be wrong with the next patient who comes through the doors? I think many in the UK may baulk at this analogy. At present the sheer number of patients coming through the doors is reducing the excitement somewhat.

Regardless I think it is worth noting there will always be those looking for something different and those who need time in the status quo. As Helen states a shared purpose is vital and as Clare alludes to energy is not limitless.

What have you learnt this week? #WILTW

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