An intensive career
Jeremy Bewley tells Jessie Colquhoun about working in intensive care
I am the clinician responsible for the intensive care unit one week in six, with a team of 2-3 doctors and 12 nurses at any one time who work with me. In that week I am fully absorbed by the responsibility of looking after the sickest 15 patients in the hospital, admitting about three patients a day and working about 80 hours. During this week I am on call. I leave the hospital at about 10 pm on weekdays and at weekends. I also need to be ready to return to the hospital immediately. The weeks in between are quieter, with about one day a week at the intensive care unit, one day a week in the operating theatre, and one night on call, with other time occupied by hospital management, teaching, postgraduate training, and research.
I am constantly surprised by the increasing demand from such a wide range of