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Sensing Savvy

Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS

Sierra Coyle is a critical care respiratory therapist. As an ECMO specialist, she has spent the last 10 years providing care to neonatal and pediatric patients. Sierra has neonatal-pediatric specialist credentials in respiratory therapy and a master’s degree in healthcare administration. She brings her respiratory therapy and ECMO expertise to the Transonic team along with her unique perspective of patient advocacy.

Recent Posts

Can Soft Skills Make You a Better Physician?

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Jun 19, 2019

What are the most important skills a physician can possess? Patients and fellow healthcare professionals would likely rank a doctor’s knowledge of medicine and their ability to complete complex procedures as most critical to their success. But what about interpersonal communication skills, compassion and civility? Although you may not consider these strengths essential for saving lives, soft skills have a greater impact on patient outcomes than you might expect.

Here’s why further developing these attributes can make you a better doctor, and several soft skills every physician should hone.

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Are Surgery Students Losing the Dexterity to Stitch?

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on May 6, 2019

From shrinking attention spans to lost sleep, there’s no shortage of claims spending too much time in front of screens can negatively impact our health. But a professor of surgery at Imperial College in London warns of another unexpected implication, specifically for surgery students: loss of the dexterity to stitch.

While today’s surgical students may score high grades, they’re spending too much time interacting with computers and mobile devices, and too little time using their hands, according to Professor Kneebone. Which means sewing up patients (something once considered routine) has become much more challenging.

So why are screens the culprit, and what can surgical students do to regain this critical skill?

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Do Nicer Doctors Have Better Treatment Outcomes?

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on May 1, 2019

Which factors have the greatest impact on patient outcomes? If you’re like most physicians, you’d probably answer this question by listing things like care team efficiency, access to advanced technology and equipment and a physician’s experience and education.

But there’s one more important element you may have overlooked: a doctor’s personality.

As it turns out, your bedside manner and ability to connect with patients may have a more significant impact on health care outcomes than you might assume.

Here’s some background about why friendly, empathetic doctors perform better and a few tips on how you can improve your outcomes by showing greater empathy.

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Physician Burnout: What to Know About this Growing Public Health Crisis

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Apr 10, 2019

Here’s a startling statistic: More than one doctor per day commits suicide. This is a rate higher than in any other profession, and double the rate within the general population, according to Medscape.

In fact, physician burnout and depression have become so widespread, the Boston Globe recently referred to it as a public health crisis.

To most people outside the occupation, this is inconceivable. After all, working in medicine allows you the opportunity to make a positive impact on people’s lives, and physicians are generally very well-compensated for their efforts. What’s there to be depressed about?

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Residency Bullying: What You Need To Know

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Nov 14, 2018

When you hear the word “bullying,” you probably imagine school-age children taunting each other in class, or young adults maligning each other behind the mask of social media. The last thing you’d consider is
the treatment of medical students completing 
hospital rounds—but
residency bullying is all too real, and it’s more widespread than you may think. 
A surprising 42 percent of U.S. medical students in their final year of school reported experiencing harassment, and 84 percent reported being belittled, according to a study published by the British Medical Journal.

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Topics: Hospital Administration, Cardiothoracic

7 Qualities of an Effective Medical Leader Should Possess

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Nov 7, 2018

Think of someone you consider a great leader. Maybe a former manager, coach, mentor or just someone in your social circles who always seems to take charge naturally.
What about this person 
makes them the right fit for a leadership role? Generally, it’s not one thing, but a collection of attributes that primes someone to lead.

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Topics: Hospital Administration

3 Ways Surgeons Can Avoid Malpractice Through Better Communication

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Oct 15, 2018

Nearly everyone has encountered a colleague whose poor and disruptive behavior affected their team. Whether it’s someone who yells, snaps at others, intimidates colleagues or has a flippant or aggressive communication style, negative behavior can affect the vibe of any workplace. But when surgeons misbehave, it can also affect patient safety and lead to an uptick in medical malpractice claims, according to new research.

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Should Surgeon Work Hours Be Capped?

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Sep 5, 2018

There’s no doubt about it: professionals who are overworked and suffering from sleep deprivation are less efficient and more likely to make mistakes than those who work shorter hours and take time off between shifts to rest and recharge. This is why airline pilots, railroad engineers and commercial truck drivers all have caps on the number of hours they can work without time off.

However, when it comes to surgeon work hours, the concept of capping is much more controversial.

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6 Locum Tenens Myths Debunked

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Jul 25, 2018

An increase in staffing shortages has put the demand for locum tenens on the rise. Healthcare facilities need extra members to support their current staff or fill in for a physician on leave.

Becoming a locum tenens is a great option for a physician seeking more control over their schedule, pay rates, and vacation time. But many practitioners are on the fence due to pervasive myths about the locum tenens’ lifestyle. Below, we’ve debunked six myths to help you decide if a locum assignment is right for you. 

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Musculoskeletal Disorders in Surgeons: What to Know

Posted by Sierra Coyle, MS, RRT-NPS on Jun 4, 2018

Surgeons and interventionalists are facing a potential “impending epidemic” concerning musculoskeletal disorders in surgeons as demonstrated in a study by the JAMA Surgery study in December 2017.

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