September 22, 2017

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A Typical “On-Call” Weekend in Minnesota Lake Country

Dr. David Ross, MD, Family Practice

Dr. David Ross and his family enjoy lake living in rural Minnesota

I’m a family medicine physician with an ACMC affiliate in Litchfield, Minn., – a town of about 6,500 people.  I’m often asked what the lifestyle is like in Litchfield, especially from other physicians living in metro areas. Here’s the key – I live on a lake inside the city limits and it takes me about two minutes to drive to the hospital. Now, here’s an example of a typical “on-call” weekend for me.

I take call every other Thursday at the local hospital, Meeker Memorial Hospital, plus one out of every nine three-day weekends. On my last call weekend, I admitted two patients on Friday during the day and I received inpatient check-outs from my partners for rounding purposes. On Friday evening I relaxed with my family and was not called overnight. On Saturday, I began rounds on 14 in-patients at 7:30 am and was finished by 11:00 am. I went home and waterskied for a few hours with a friend of mine, then received a call from the ER doc for two admissions. I did the two admissions, then went home to go kneeboarding with my daughter. Later, I was called for another admission, so I returned to the hospital and took care of the patient. I returned home to enjoy steaks on the grill, corn on the cob, and s’mores over the campfire with my family and neighbors.  I had no calls Saturday night, did no admissions on Sunday, and thus spent another day on the lake with my family.  That’s it.

So… would you like to hear about the next eight weekends that I was NOT on call? Lake living is affordable here, the hospital is just minutes away, there is no traffic, the organization and the patients are great, and the call is both light and infrequent.  What could be better than that?