A room with a view

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 11 May 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b717
  1. Suzy Stokes, foundation year 2 doctor in general medicine, University Hospital of North Staffordshire, Stoke on Trent
  1. suzystokes{at}

    Like any doctor being admitted to the hospital in which he or she works, I was pleased to have a side room away from the curious eyes of colleagues and friends. Free to sleep in peace, read in peace, and have personal medical discussions in private. But as the weeks passed while I waited for a diagnosis, boredom and loneliness set in—DVD box-sets all watched and attention span for crosswords, Sudoku, solitaire, and books exhausted. Time slowed to a standstill. Having stared at the same four windowless walls for a whole month, I found little new to talk about with visiting friends. Despite excellent medical care and staff who always had time to listen, I couldn’t …

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