He looked at me, he looked me square in the eyes, and he said, “Steve, do you know why we study?”
I was on my second day of my first job in emergency medicine and I knew I would receive a lot probing questions to see how qualified I was. This one seemed simple, so thus there must be a simple answer.
“So that we can improve our medical practice?” Wrong.
“So that we can improve medicine as a society?” Very wrong.
“So that we don’t get sued?” The most wrong.
I was out of ideas and I was starting to drown in the silence of not knowing the answer to my first test. I could feel the gaze of the nurses and technicians grow heavy on my neck as the silence grew. Knowing that first impressions with all of my coworkers was pivotal, I sighed, admitted defeat, and finally returned the eye contact back to Dr. Daoud pleading for the torture to end.
“It is for our patients we study, because they need us too.” Dr. Daoud replied.
Simple question, simple answer.
He then explained to me that underneath the money, the scrubs, the ups, and the downs, there is the most important, but most forgotten, aspect of medicine: the patients. In a lot of cases, people’s lives are depending on how well you know the material and if you aren’t stepping into the hospital that day for the patients then you shouldn’t be stepping in at all.
That day was one just one of many days that Dr. Daoud taught me a lesson in medicine but more so a lesson in life.
It’s only fitting that when the National Brain Tumor Society announced that they were doing a polar plunge to raise money and awareness for brain cancer that we formed a team to celebrate and honor Sherif.
Dr. Sherif Daoud possesses an infectious aura of kindness that leaves a lasting inspirational impression on everyone he is around. Working just one shift, one minute, or even having one conversation with Sherif would motivate anyone to see his or her true potential.
Dr. Daoud joked that he was the sheriff of the Emergency Department after an incident where a patient read his nametag and told him “I need a Doctor, not a sheriff!”
With that joke in mind we have formed a team in his name called Sherif’s Sheriffs to support Dr. Daoud as he undergoes treatment.
The event is called “Connecticut Brain Freeze” and it is comprised of “teams” of people that you, yes you sitting right there procrastinating on your phone, can make jump into the water. How do you make them jump? Numbingly simple (get the pun?) If each member of the team has $100 dollars donated to their individual account then they will jump. However, these team members will not have to jump in if they don’t reach $100!
It’s incredibly important that you donate to support this important cause and the individuals battling this difficult disease like Sherif!
Team Sherif’s Sheriffs is the 2nd-leading fundraising team for the first-annual Connecticut Brain Freeze event on March 6th in West Haven, CT. To learn more of get involved in the event, please visit here. To help support Tea Sherif’s Sheriffs, click here.