Good Leaders Make Good Doctors

During our final year of medical training, I would take turns with the other senior residents responding to cardiac arrests in the hospital. We’d spend weeks camped out in the doctor’s lounge, our hearts racing at the prospect of a patient’s heart stopping, bracing for the moment a shrill pager or overhead speaker would signal an emergency.

When the signal came, two dozen clinicians of different ranks and specialties would descend on the patient’s room. It was then the on-call senior’s job to conduct an efficient, morbid, sometimes miraculous symphony to revive a patient whose heart had stopped beating.