Call can be pretty brutal sometimes. Some nights you don’t get to sleep at all and you end up staying awake close to 30 hours by the time you hit the sack. Despite the many downsides, there are some pros about being on call.
- You get to do more – less people means you need to step up your game. You get to see more patients and figure out what needs to be done. And as new learners, increased clinical exposure is the best thing you can get.
- You learn more when you are the one making the decisions and committing to them. You take ownership of your patients and learn to become more confident with your decisions.
- You are a critical part of the team – you are covering for other people when you are on call. Because of you, others are able to go home and feel at ease that patient care is continued. They will return the favor too.
- You can catch up on work – When the nights aren’t busy, you can use that down-time that you might normally waste at home to finish any remaining work. Whether it’s a dictation to be done or a note to be written, you have a lot more time to get all your work done.
- You lose weight – you’ll burns hundreds of extra calories for every additional hour you stay awake
- Beautiful sunrises in the morning that signal the shift is coming to an end. Post-call mornings always seem refreshing, as if a weight has been lifted off your shoulder.
- Save yourself a day of work – Think of it as doing a back to back work day so you can skip the next day. A break in the middle of the week can often make a big difference in your stress levels.
- Post-call day naps. Best slumber of your life.
- Time off during work hours – For anyone who works full time during the week, it can be pretty hard to get some errands done after work hours. Whether that’s going to the bank, getting your car fixed and so on, there are many things that can only get done during the day. Post call days are perfect for catching up on those loose ends.
- Sense of accomplishment – whether you saved a life during your call shift, diagnosed and managed a new admission or contributed to patient care, at the end of call you get satisfaction that you made a difference.
I won’t make a list of the downsides of being on call, that’s a whole other issue, but if you have any pros/cons or personal experiences with being on call, feel free to leave a comment.