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I Should Have Said No

Can you see this patient today?
His appointment is tomorrow,
he came all the way from Nebraska.
Can you work extra tomorrow,
we are short, just four hours extra?
Would you be able to work Christmas this year?

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Metamorphosis

Lisa Burr ~

It was another simmering-hot Texas day, and the AC was faltering in the family-practice clinic where I worked as a family nurse practitioner. Most of our clients were poor and spoke only Spanish.

My nurse, Eliza, approached, wide-eyed.

“There’s a new patient–a woman named Maraby. She seems really angry,” she murmured. “She’s the color of Dijon mustard, and she’s wearing a long, heavy wool cape. She looks like she’s

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Walk-In

Ingrid Forsberg ~

It’s 10:00 am on a Monday in June. I’m the nurse practitioner on duty in a convenience care clinic housed in a corner drugstore in urban Chicago.

Sunlight is pouring through the huge storefront windows when my first patient of the day walks in. He’s in his late twenties, muscular, crew-cut. He looks like someone who’s used to being in charge.

Right now, though, he looks anxious. He’s pale,

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