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A Piece of My Mind
June 19, 2002

First Morning Back

Author Affiliations

A Piece of My Mind Section Editor: Roxanne K. Young, Associate Editor.

JAMA. 2002;287(23):3053-3054. doi:10.1001/jama.287.23.3053

This morning, I returned after a 2-year leave of absence to my medical practice of some 20 years. A long-established frontline practice, it serves the rich and poor, young and old, sick and healthy. Throughout my leave (I worked in Washington, DC, at a health policy center focused on family practice and primary care), I have yearned for this day. But now I feel uneasy. The habits of practice are rusty, and prescribing details are no longer automatic. I take solace in having a little computer equipped with names of drugs and their interactions and costs in my pocket. My favorite references reside in my book bag as I walk in, early, to have some extra time before patients, this first morning back.