Health Care Haikus

5 11 2009

Dr Rob Lamberts of Musings of a Distractible Mind is holding a “Health Care Haiku Contest“. The actual contest is at his Facebook page.

Inspired by the beautiful haiku of Dr. Ramona Bates of Suture for a Living, who also inspired T of Notes of an Anesthesioboist to write a Haiku, I started to write my own. Once I started writing, I couldn’t stop.

This is the result: 9 Health Care Haikus.

Haiku #11018284405_db0b517f24 emergency hospital night

Dark when he leaves home,

Dark when he returns from work.

Resident Life.

Haiku #2

Web 2 point ooh tools,

Might help to reform health care.

Change needs people 2.78244074WM004_Supreme_Court

Haiku #3

Health Care Reform.

An unaffordable plan?

A matter of choice.

Haiku #4

One trillion for war.

The poor denied insurance.

U.S. Death Panel.

2910025091_907be70e41 Exam

Haiku #5

P S A screening,

rectal exams, biopsies.

Worries, no less deaths.

Haiku #6

Doctor, Desk, Patient

2868594277_873f67216d doctor patient mural

Questions, silence, not understood,

Frown, shake hands, such pain.

Haiku #7

Fragile hands, white sheets,

Witty old man, nurses laugh.

Shout down silent tears.

Haiku #82898004506_de9f57e836 patient in the next bed

Wishing he was dead,

Paralyzed from neck down,

Nothing he can do.

Haiku #9

The man next to me

discusses end-of-life-wish.

Curtains are closed.

Notes and Acknowledgements

  • Haiku #1 : Inspired by a tweet by Scott Greenberg, MD (and resident)
  • Haiku #2: Own experience, Web 2.0 is more than web 2.0 tools, Web 2.0 is people (see presentation)
  • Haiku #3 and #4: Based on article: “We Can’t Afford Health Care? You Lie!” at Truthorg. (see linked photo below)
  • Haiku #5 A lot of money goes into screening. But is it worth while? Recent studies show that prostate cancer screening may not lower mortality. See older post: Still Confusion about the Usefulness of PSA-screening.
  • Haiku #6, #7, #8, #9 All about loneliness of patients, miscommunication, the lack of being in control and the lack of privacy. Haiku #8 and #9 are based on my own experience: the man lying next to me wanted to end his life, but was not allowed to. He had to take fluid food. I overheard the conversations between him and his doctors, nurses, a psychiatrist, a dietitian and a priest. Quite embarrassing.

Photo Credits:


Are you a Twitter user? Tweet this!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]



9 responses

5 11 2009
Yousei Hime

What a wonderful surprise! Never thought of medical haiku. I particularly like the last two, #8 and #9. Please continue with your poetry.

5 11 2009

Wonderful! I agree with Yousei, I like the last two the best.

5 11 2009
Tweets that mention Health Care Haikus « Laika’s MedLibLog --

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Laika (Jacqueline), rlbates. rlbates said: Wonderful! RT @laikas Blogging: Health Care Haikus […]

11 11 2009
crzegrl, flight nurse » Blog Archive » Grand Rounds Vol 6. No. 7

[…] Happy, happy girls The second is from Laika at “Laika’s MedLibLog.” Haiku #8 […]

15 11 2009
Golden Haikus | Haikus about Medicine, Llamas, and Other Stuff

[…] 3. Jacqueline Limpens – (Jacqueline wrote a whole post inspired by this contest! She included several entries on […]

23 11 2009
My Little Golden Llama « Laika’s MedLibLog

[…] final haiku I’m presenting That Limpens gal who’s unrelenting She wrote a whole post But what touched me most The hours of a life residenting […]

23 01 2012

I’m looking at how to use haiku with nursing students in their pharmacology class. Thanks for posting yours here.

16 07 2012
Laura Atwood

Several from home physical therapy:

Baby, don’t pull Dad’s
G-tube, J-tube, chemo port
Rock-a-bye…good bye

Doc says, “Please help him,
I can’t.” But neither can I.
MS, going down

No stomach, just ribs.
“Don’t see me as old,” he begs.
Ninety-two: the end.

J.E.S., gracious.
“I just need to work harder.”
Words before his death.

Soul strong, but body…
Grunts, “Cheesesteak sandwich, please,” then
Looks at feeding tube

No money, no help
Worried about young daughter
MS is a curse.

1 06 2013
Grand Rounds Vol 6. No. 7

[…] Haiku #8 […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: