A Locum’s ScrapBook: Sometimes You Just Get to a Program that Absolutely H A S What it Takes :)

Heading to The Next Planet I’m Gonna land On 🙂

Editor’s Note:

Just finished up a stint in the southern Midwest that lasted roughly 6 months from June to December, it’s a place I have pumped at before, and it’s a program that I hold in high regard.

I’m going home for two weeks on a much needed holiday with my wife and children, so that has me absolutely giddy with all things Christmas and an answer to why I do this.  It sucks – TOTALLY to be away from my home, my wife, my children, and all the things that we build to enjoy our lives and prosper for the future.  But I chose this path- and it works at this point in our lives.

As I drove away from my last case for this “TOUR” I actually referred to it to my wife as a tour- and we both understood the parallel that any assignment away from home can indeed be similar to tours of duty that I was assigned to- when on active duty in the United States Navy as a combat medic.  I had just finished up with a case, I felt really satisfied and at home- because it was a fun pump run- a great surgeon- an excellent team- and just a decent place to be a part of.

So I’m taking off and coming back for another stint here- and for this post- I would like to share with you all- just what a good team this really is  🙂

There are some People I would Like to recognize:

The Scrubs

(AND when I say “SCRUBS”- I INCLUDE myself- because I scrubbed for 8 Years before getting into Perfusion).

Those skills are what SEPARATED me from the pack.   I was better, faster, more organized, quicker to adapt, more resourceful, more confidant, assimilated to the environment and not afraid of anything- basically when I got into school –

Those skills?  I admire them every day I pump a case.  And I recognize them when they are clearly evident with the people I work with.


I’m gonna say it for what it iz: “TOP GUN”  LOL  Rebecca is totally amazing.  She stops at nothing to make sure the job is done right.  I watched her set up a case at 5:30 am- Identify a sterility issue-  trash the setup and start fresh- and then go to the next room and setup the back table for the OTHER open heart case because bad weather slowed down the 1st Scrub for that case.  Yeah- she is def top dawg – IMO.


Ever see one of those war movies where you know some serious shit is gonna go go down- and you are so scared all you want to do is pray?  Well- if you’re gonna pray?  Just hope Melissa is in your fox hole- cuz she is Baaaad to the Bone 🙂


An amazingly fast and seriously talented technician.  Tuff as nails–  She knows her stuff- and she knows it cold.  Don’t mess with her- because she doesn’t make mistakes- and I have never seen her step back away from any situation.  She absolutely cares about the job- and more importantly- she stands her ground for what is right- and makes sure that the job is done right.  Heart of gold.



I’m pretty sure I misspelled your name- even though I asked you how it was spelled LOL-   Getting to the point though- Probably the most recent addition to this crew- EXCEPTIONALLY solid when it comes to dealing with really hard situational conflicts.  Impressive- especially considering how relatively new to this team you are.  (It says a lot for a team when “new” is considered 1 yearish?)

The Circulators



Well what can I say?  YOU A R E IT.  That undefinable glue that makes THIS team work.  I watch you a lot.

Extraordinarily good in ALL crisis situations–  You are proactive before the storm reaches us- and when things get really bad- your familiarity with all aspects of OUR environment, makes you indispensable in terms of not only anticipating what we need to accomplish the task at hand- but proactive in identifying alternative resources.  MUCH respect. BEST of the best.



Every time ANYONE walks in the heart room- if they are on the heart team- you satisfy an inner need of calm that is uncanny in the way it settles people down.  You bestow kindness to everyone– and certainly help make visitors such as myself feel welcome.  You have SO earned my respect not only because of your nursing skills- but your unflappable attention to the task at hand.  You multitask exceptionally well- and your smile breaks ALL barriers.  THANK YOU 🙂



I probably misspelled that dude- BUT what I won’t misspell- is one undeniable fact!  COMMITTED with FAITH.

I won’t bore you with the obvious skills you bring to the table- but what is clearly evident and resonates with the entire room- is the spiritual wellness you confer to the team.  Thank you 🙂



You make my day when your are in the room- cuz you are  so “matter of fact”.  You know your stuff- and you are incredibly KIND.  That makes a difference to people like me that travel.  I very much appreciate you- and especially respect the kindness you show to our patients.


FISH: Nothing else to say,  If you and I are doing a heart- It’s a done deal.  PERIOD 🙂  You are truly excellent.

Raj:  Mercury RISING.  Impressive.  Lots of ATTITUDE- BUT– You back it ups with your skillset 🙂

Neal:  Drew Brees ON THE RISE_  You have talent 🙂

The Nurse Pracs 🙂

Becky:  Yeah- BRING IT!  🙂  Love your style- ALL AMERICAN in my book- I still want to do the BB shot challenge 🙂  Don’t need to discuss skillz here- you clearly have them- I’m impressed.  I’ll take you down tho- on a 3 point contest- or H O R S E.

Kyla:  To be a part of this team is tuff.  It ain’t fun to grow into it.  You are absolutely making your mark and becoming a solid- Incredibly SOLID asset- in terms of what you bring to the team.  Believe in yourself 🙂  Cuz the TEAM believes in you !

El  Perfusionista (That’s US- the Perfusionists)


Smooth as silk.  I appreciate poetry in motion- so watching you RAP is something that I can and do respect.  I have watched you grow into your position- and I can’t think of anyone better for the job.  It is clear you have the TOTAL confidence of the surgeons, the team and administration.  You have EARNED it.  This is your TIME.


I don’t even know what to say to you Mark-  All I know is that you are solid as a rock.  That is something to be said in our profession.  You don’t falter- and that means ultimately that all of us look to you for support or advice.  I appreciate the opportunity to work side-by-side with you 🙂


Well- you gotta go there sometime.

Obvious questions:

  • Are they good?  YEAH
  • Are they kind?  YEAH
  • Do they have tempers?  YEAH
  • Are they Good?  YEAH
  • Would I let them operate on me?  ABSOLUTELY
  • Would I let them operate on my  Family?  ABSOLUTELY

Some of the BEST I have seen- in 54 Hospitals- IMO 🙂

And that’s over 30 years.