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New Intern Disease Discovered (Reprise)

August 19, 2018
by Mark David Siegel

Hi everyone: We’re up in Devens, MA for our niece’s wedding, which we celebrated last night at TheFruitlands Museum. This morning we’re driving to Portland, ME for lobster rolls at Eventide. Later this week, we’re going to Moosehead Lake for a moose cruise, then to Quebec City, and then down through the White Mountains before heading home. Our itineraries tend to change, so who knows what the week will bring?

Today seemed like a good day to reprise an older PD Note. I’ll be thinking of you as we gorge on crustaceans, search for forest creatures, and stroll the cobblestone streets of old Quebec.



To our wonderful interns (and everyone else):

It has come to my attention that we have an epidemic of interns diagnosed with a disease that tortures them with the following delusions:

  1. That he or she is neither skilled nor smart enough to be a Yale Resident
  2. That the condition is rare and only affects one person (guess who)
  3. That the affliction is incurable
  4. That signs of the disease (insufficient knowledge and skill) are obvious to residents and attendings who gloss over the evidence with shallow compliments like "nice work," "good job," and "very impressive."

Please know, dear interns, that this disease, which must not be named, recurs each summer, afflicts the most talented interns especially ferociously, and becomes less severe with each passing day. Its cause is the overwhelming realization that there is a lot to learn.

I am now 30 years past the same affliction and can assure you that the cure is contained within the walls of our hospitals and clinics, in the confident smiles and support of your residency family.

You are a talented group of interns. Whether you believe it or not, your intelligence and skills are self-evident to those of us who recruited you. You are on your way to becoming spectacular physicians, no matter what doubts plague your mind on these steamy summer nights.

For those of you suffering this malady, your Residents, Chief Residents, and Program Directors are here for you. Let us know how we can help.

All my best,


Submitted by Mark David Siegel on August 19, 2018