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Andrew Cleary, MD

18 Sep 2016

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A full trauma patient with devastating injuries was brought to our ED. The activation was paged out to the trauma team, and the trauma surgeon called to say he was on the way. Over the next minutes it became apparent the patient was even more severely injured than was anticipated. As the ED doctor managed the patient in the ED it became evident that the surgeon was needed urgently.

Dr. Cleary was the second call surgeon, but for the most part they are rarely needed in the ED and spend their time managing inpatients or operating. When I called Dr. Cleary he didn’t argue, complain or question he just said I’ll be right there and he was. The patient’s resuscitation required almost every intervention that can be done in the ED, and with his calm demeanor and leadership he, the ED doctor, the anesthesiologist and the trauma team in the ED gave this patient every opportunity for survival.

Unfortunately, the patient did not survive, but not without exceptional teamwork on the part of everyone involved. Even when the designated trauma surgeon arrived Dr. Cleary remained the leader. One could say this is his job, and that is true. But it is much easier to follow a leader who shows up with grace, is skilled, and is respectful and appreciative of everyone in the room. Dr. Cleary was a role model for excellence yesterday. He is going to say he was just doing his job and he was. But it doesn’t change the fact that he did model excellence, and for that we appreciate him and want to recognize him.