When the Simulated Patient is for Real by Taneisha Grant

From the encounter with Mr. G, the narrator learns the importance of using her patient-centered interviewing skills and sensitivity to calm the situation and attend to an aggressive patient. It is clear that she did not learn much about cultural awareness at school, which she uses to create a connection with her patient and help him understand the circumstances that he was in during his stay at the hospital: “I also remembered my multi-cultural seminars from medical school and how my teachers strived to teach cultural awareness and sensitivity” (Grant). Her interaction with the patient was the first step in gaining this knowledge. She is brave enough to face the man and suture his bro when deep down she already knew that he was potentially belligerent and could hurt her at any given moment: “The profile of an angry, handcuffed man in police custody, possibly intoxicated possibly intoxicated by drugs is enough to make someone reproachable” (Grant).  The narrator understands that even though the man feels vulnerable for being abused by the police and being restrained to a hospital bed. It was at this moment that she acknowledges that Mr. G is straggling to grapple with the reality that confronts him. Moreover, the doctor now realizes the critical role that they play in the lives of their patients. She calls his mother, as per wish and promises to ensure that he gets the breakfast he has been requesting while at the Emergency Room (ER). The narrator also learns that most of the individuals who find themselves in a hospital setting are intimidated by the medical encounter. It is for this reason that she understands Mr. G’s situation owing to the fact that he was merely scared of the environment and the persons who were about to handle his case: “I try to empathize with my patients because I realize that the medical encounter can be intimidating”(Grant). The narrator realizes any person who walks through that ER door ceases to be anything else but a patient to her.

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