Like an apprenticeship

Looking back of my life as a doctor, I have been kindly taught by many senior doctors on private basis. One of such doctors was a neurologist named Kuwashima at the med school hospital where I served residency. She was around 40 years of age then. A lady of short stature always smiling. I can't remember exactly but might have asked her to teach me how to read EEG. Once a week, I was given a question record by her, which I was supposed to make a report on. I brought a draft of the report to a room in the outpatient ward after the outpatient was over. She has given me some instructions for the draft. I was supposed to make corrections according to her words. I have done that course of training for half a year or so. Eventually, even though I have not specialized in pediatric neurology, this training by her has made me confident in reading ordinary EEG if not perfect. Without her kind and continuous lessons, I won't be able to do with this basic technique.

I happened to know she had been an founder and its chief of a nursing facility for handicapped. The name of the facility and its principle seem to mean it was based on a faith in Catholic. Among the principles, the most remarkable one, which I thought most likely due to her character, was that everyone should call each other, not doctor etc, but only "San" after name, an equivalent to Mr. or Ms. in Japanese. I have never heard of her faith in Christianity but am sure she has believed in it since her young days. It seems she has not married until now. She might be just before 80 years of age.

In clinical medicine, we learn many things from senior doctors in person. The delivery of knowledge or technique is based on the human relationship with them. Once we could rely on a particular senior doctor for his knowledge and personality, we could really learn something of medical experience or technique from him or her. It is comparable to an apprenticeship in a sense.

In Japan, the officials of the government agency are trying to make a system to organize personnel affairs of doctors all over the country for their own profit. It was handled by the departments in medical schools in the past. however, I am sure the bureaucrats will fail in their trick. Because they are neglecting these personal relationship in medical training between doctors.

I would like to see her in person after decades of absence. Again, I would appreciate her for her kind tutoring in my resident days.

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