He told us emphatically that we were all surgeons, and the OR was full. How we could idly allow our patients to die, he mused, when we stood amid crisis was unfathomable. What’s more unfathomable is how we could be expected to save one who wears a DNR bracelet. Some patients do not seek revival; their symptoms bring them to us, but they have no desire to do anything more than populate the waiting room because it’s cold outside. I have no patience for someone who does not wish to be saved. Nor should I be accountable for his or her demise. My business is with those who call my name, earnestly seeking treatment, if not just reassurance that they will make it. If I’m the surgeon, don’t tell me how to operate.


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