Christmas Cancellation Canned

The Utopian College of Emergency for Medicine has made an urgent press release:

Christmas will NOT be canceled!

Yes, believe your eyes, the Council Executive of UCEM has rescinded its intention to cancel Christmas.

Insiders have stated that it is nothing to do with the fact that members of the Council Executive were, in the absence of there actually being a Christmas, finding it hard to justify the Christmas leave they had already given themselves. No, it appears that the change of heart was instigated by the big man himself, Santa Claus.

For the past 36 hours, Santa Claus has been in tense negotiations with the Council Executive in an attempt to rescue Christmas. This comes on the back of the largest public health scandal involving Santa since he was accused of having been invented by Coca-Cola. Santa has been stung by recent vehement criticism claiming that he is a bad role model for children and should be considered a ‘public health pariah’.

In order to rescue Christmas, Santa Claus has made a number of pledges to improve the health of the public by serving as better role model:

  • Santa Claus will no longer smoke a pipe or any other form of tobacco.
  • After every 10 km Santa will give his reindeer a rest, and pull his sleigh all by himself for the next 1 km (unfortunately, some presents may arrive late).
  • Santa will no longer appear in any marketing campaigns targeting children, particularly those involving junk food and soft drinks.
  • Santa will no longer drink the copious cans of beer left for him on Christmas Eve. Instead, Santa will now have a share of the carrots left for his Reindeer. He also requests that beer no longer be left out, so that neither he nor his reindeer will be tempted to imbibe, and so that neither he nor they can be accused of drinking and driving.
  • Santa will now wear a helmet and safety harness when driving his sleigh, on rooftops and when abseiling down chimneys.
  • In the interests of stemming the spread of infectious diseases, children will no longer be able to physically touch Santa, sit on his lap, nor kiss him in shopping centers.
  • Santa will undertake an UCEM-sanctioned diet and exercise regimen (details to be released early in the New Year) with the intention of making significant inroads into his considerable girth.
Santa pledges to clean up his unhealthy act.

Following the negotiations, Egerton Y. Davis the Fourth, spokesperson for the Council Executive of UCEM, said:

“We are pleased that the negotiations with Santa Claus have gone well. His selfless pledges will go a long way to off-setting the enormous public health burden of horrible injuries and excessive over-indulgence that will occur as the inevitable sequelae of Christmas.”

Santa Claus offered only a brisk ” no comment” to the paparazzi as he squeezed into his sleigh. However some bystanders claim they heard angry mutterings about how far behind he was on wrapping presents, as well as what may well have been expletives, as his sleigh took off from Enlightenment Boulevard.


  • Grills NJ, Halyday B. Santa Claus: A Public Health Pariah? BMJ 2009;339:b5261 [BMJ]
Utopian College of Emergency for Medicine

Chris is an Intensivist and ECMO specialist at the Alfred ICU in Melbourne. He is also a Clinical Adjunct Associate Professor at Monash University. He is a co-founder of the Australia and New Zealand Clinician Educator Network (ANZCEN) and is the Lead for the ANZCEN Clinician Educator Incubator programme. He is on the Board of Directors for the Intensive Care Foundation and is a First Part Examiner for the College of Intensive Care Medicine. He is an internationally recognised Clinician Educator with a passion for helping clinicians learn and for improving the clinical performance of individuals and collectives.

After finishing his medical degree at the University of Auckland, he continued post-graduate training in New Zealand as well as Australia’s Northern Territory, Perth and Melbourne. He has completed fellowship training in both intensive care medicine and emergency medicine, as well as post-graduate training in biochemistry, clinical toxicology, clinical epidemiology, and health professional education.

He is actively involved in in using translational simulation to improve patient care and the design of processes and systems at Alfred Health. He coordinates the Alfred ICU’s education and simulation programmes and runs the unit’s education website, INTENSIVE.  He created the ‘Critically Ill Airway’ course and teaches on numerous courses around the world. He is one of the founders of the FOAM movement (Free Open-Access Medical education) and is co-creator of litfl.com, the RAGE podcast, the Resuscitology course, and the SMACC conference.

His one great achievement is being the father of three amazing children.

On Twitter, he is @precordialthump.

| INTENSIVE | RAGE | Resuscitology | SMACC

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