::Coping With Paperwork ::
Dr Mahibur Rahman
This article was first published in 2005 and is reproduced with the kind permission of Hospital Doctor, who retain the copyright.
We all have to deal with paperwork everyday - from referrals to other specialities, to clinic letters or discharge summaries, it can all build up. Sometimes it can seem that we spend more time dealing with paperwork than dealing with patients. This article looks at ways of coping with paperwork effectively so that you can free up more time for clinical work or relaxing in the mess.
Organise the paper mountain
The first step to dealing with paperwork is knowing exactly what you have to deal with. To do this, you need to organise the stack of papers into some sort of order. If you have let a large amount to build up, this can be very painful at first, but the rewards in the long term make it worthwhile. If you have paperwork in more than one place, it may help to gather it together in one place. Once you have everything together, you need to sort it into categories:
Clinical (referrals received, referrals to others, discharge summaries etc.)
Non clinical work related - study leave applications, annual leave, exams, GMC annual fee payment etc.
Other - tax returns , drug company literature, unsolicited mail, invitations to meetings etc.