Doctors enjoy their lives

"Don't complain - enjoy!"

PFORZHEIM. The lunch break in the family doctor's practice in Pforzheim is over. Andrea Schreiter is at the reception and is on the phone.

"I'm looking for a doctor who can step in at the emergency practice in the Siloah Clinic at the weekend," she informs him briefly. Schreiter's hair is still damp. She spent her lunchtime in the municipal swimming pool. Here it usually pulls its 20 lanes of 50 meters each.

"Enjoy life, use every moment" is the motto of the 53-year-old medical specialist (MFA) who, in addition to her full-time job in the practice, also manages three emergency practices and their duty rosters.

Lie down for a two-hour nap and drag yourself back to the practice with your face wrinkled - no, that's not your thing. "Of course our working hours are stupid. Who needs a three-hour lunch break?" Schreiter's tip to colleagues: "Don't complain - enjoy!"

Impressed by VERAH

Since 2000 Schreiter has been working in Dr. Peter Engeser and Dr. Gabriele Sch├Ąchinger. This is particularly exciting: "In the last ten years, a lot has changed in family medicine with the DMP and family doctor contracts. As an MFA, we are allowed to do a lot more than before," she says.

VERAH is particularly fond of it. In Baden-W├╝rttemberg, the care assistant VERAH will take over the case management for multiple chronically ill AOK patients from the third quarter of 2014 - home visits are also part of her job. This division of labor with the doctor has already proven itself in the PraCMan pilot project.

Schreiter already trained as a VERAH in 2008. "I'm already looking forward to it. Then we can finally go on a medical journey again," she recommends to her colleagues to do the same.

36 years ago, namely in 1978, Schreiter started her medical assistant training. The native of Leipzig has lived in Pforzheim for just as long. She is someone who likes to speak plain text - in front of colleagues and doctors alike. A few days ago she was honored at the General Practice Day in Heidelberg.

For the 14th time she appeared here as a speaker. It is important for Schreiter to be satisfied at work and to be active yourself. "The same applies in leisure time. It doesn't have to be neglected," says Schreiter, who does 1.5 hours of sport a day and raves about circuit training, Pilates, long dog walks and swimming.

No picnic

Schreiter knows that not every MFA wants to work and live like them. "Many of my colleagues go to work because they have to to earn money. We are not talking about having fun at work and being committed," she says with regret. As a speaker, Schreiter tries to counteract this in her workshops.

She herself knows that not every moment in the practice is a picnic: "In the Pforzheim region, five general practitioners' practices have closed, there are days when patients give each other the handle and we no longer know how to stop the chaos, "she admits.

Your secret weapon for moments like this: humor, a good dose of good humor and a quantum of irony! Her nightmare: bitches among the colleagues.

"It doesn't do any good," she says, rolling her eyes. The practice employee, on the other hand, thinks very highly of further education and training. "That makes people courageous and confident when dealing with patients," she says, recommending topics such as diabetes, CHD, COPD and asthma.

Schreiter herself is a trained diabetes assistant as well as a diet and nutritionist. After her advanced training on the subject of practice management and palliative medicine, the mother of a 26-year-old son also trained as a quality circle moderator for the family doctors' association in 2012.

Seizing opportunities is a matter of course for them. "I cannot understand that there are still general practitioners who refuse to accept general practitioner and specialist contracts, but who complain at the same time that they have to downgrade their employees in terms of salary," summarizes Schreiter.

In her opinion, GP contracts and PraCMan are a huge opportunity for the entire practice team to offer good medicine and receive fair remuneration.

"Men just have no words"

When asked about her own salary, the practice employee is satisfied, but in principle she considers the collective wage for MFA to be too low: "No man could support a family with that," she criticizes and adds with a laugh: That the MFA's job is a classic one A woman's job is easy to explain from another point of view.

"Men simply don't have the words that patients like to hear - men only speak 5,000 syllables a day, whereas women speak 25,000."

But then she gets serious again. Her topic: palliative medicine. Schreiter accompanies family doctor Dr. Peter Engeser always on his palliative medical home visits. "Here, seriously ill people and their families need support, a sensitive, empathetic hand, good medical knowledge and the feeling of not being alone," she summarizes.

Many a fate goes to the substance. Schreiter mentions, for example, the case of a patient with pancreatic cancer. This died faster than expected. To this day she regrets that she could no longer say goodbye to him.

"Basically for me: An MFA should first and foremost have the will to help sick people and to show empathy. Introverted women are certainly out of place here," she sums up while picking up the phone again.

A few minutes later she has a doctor on the line who is ready to take over the open duty in the Pforzheim emergency practice. Schreiter is satisfied, the roster is complete again.