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I need a vest like that...


Thanks for sharing this article. OF course we're all in favor of reducing errors in medical care and the differences amongst nurses and the conditions in which they work and their quality of management is fascinating.
And what about MD's? Seems like there's very little written about differences within this profession and the effect on our medical care.

Interrupts are a common occurrence in the work environment. We are pulled every which way throughout the day... a meeting here, a meeting there. Next, emails and instant messages bombard us, not to even mention phone calls. How can any of us ever get any work done? I love the idea of the "do not interrupt" vest. I think we'd all be more efficient if we'd just disconnect ourselves from the world for a few hours a day!

I just read Jonatahn Friesen's comment... good stuff there!

working girl

Where can I get one of those jackets???

Randy Bosch

Excellent information, applicable to all disciplines and professions, though often not as critical as healthcare.

Please note, however, that the practice of covering windows - windows usually installed in just the past decade or so - most probably violates several State and Federal regulations intended to prevent various "personnel problems" in Pharmacies and hospital Medicine Rooms, and should not be forwarded as a way to prevent interruptions without careful review of regulations.

Jonathan Friesen

John Medina, author of Brain Rules, and developmental molecular biologist, summarizes the research on the brain's ability to multitask with this: "Multitasking, when it comes to paying attention, is a myth...We are biologically incapable of processing attention-rich inputs simultaneously."

Medina describes the brain's function in a similar fashion to the way a single processor computer works: it uses "task-switching." When attempting to multitask, your brain must disengage from the current task, re-engage the new one, disengage the new one, and re-engage the old one while trying to remember where it was at before disengaging. Medina notes that various studies show this task-switching process to be very inefficient--not only does it take around 50% longer to complete a task, that person makes up to 50% more errors performing the task (Medina, Brain Rules, pp 84-87).

The information that is the Chronicle article certainly reinforces this notion.

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