Agraphia Medical Tragicomedy

2Jun/06Off

I’m frustrated

I know I haven't been posting- and believe me, it's not for lack of time in which to do so.

There's not much to say, honestly. I found out Wednesday that the guy I'm working for does not, in fact, have IRB approval. Back in the days before HIPAA, I could have culled through all of the medical records of the hospital, pulled out the ones he wanted, and started doing preliminary analysis while we waited for IRB approval. All I want to do right now is analyze some data.

Unfortunately, we do not, in fact, have approval. And what that means is that medical records has already run the data for me and has a list of some 50 names, waiting. Literally, in a printout, on a woman named Joanna's desk. It's there. I know exactly where it is.

However, Joanna cannot release the names to me until I give her a copy of my IRB approval form. To have this form, I need to be approved for the IRB. To get approved by the IRB, I have to get departmental approval.

Now here's the problem with this. The department head has to sign off on the document- and all he ever does is glance at it and sign it. But the research head also has to sign off... and the research head peruses every proposal with a fine-toothed comb. The research head is also totally busy until Monday.

I gave my proposal to the departmental secretary on Wednesday. She still hasn't even GIVEN it to either of the people that need to sign off on it.

What am I doing in the meantime? Standing around, watching surgeries. And let me tell you... if you aren't doing the surgery? It is boring as all hell to be standing around watching surgery day in and day out. I've been leaving early and coming in late every day. The guy I'm supposed to be working for doesn't care- he's too busy.

So, I'm stuck, and I'm frustrated, and I'm not getting anything done. And that, dear readers, is why I haven't been posting. There is absolutely nothing to post.

Hopefully the proposal will get through departmental approval by Monday. If I'm lucky, it'll see the light of day at the IRB by next Friday. I may then get the list of names two Mondays from now.

I've only got 2 months in the summer... one of them is going to be completely eaten up by administrative paperwork.

God dammit.

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