Health Is Social

Infusing Social Media into Healthcare

I think too many Americans put up with bureaucratic friction in Healthcare. It’s as if the industry has conditioned tens on millions of people to sit in the proverbial waiting room like obedient dogs.

It’s not just patients. Healthcare providers have been conditioned as well.

We human beings have a remarkable strength: an ability to learn and accommodate.

We human beings have a remarkable weakness: an ability to learn and accomodate.

“Well, this is just how things have always been done. If we didn’t do it this way, xyz will happen.”

Case in point:

I recently had to get a diagnostic procedure done for someone (not something life-threatening, but important). I showed up at the facility after being told by the provider that it would be speedy – and you know what? Just as we walked in, they were shutting down the office for the day and told me to come back the next week.

Frustrated, I turned away and just as I was about to leave I said to myself “F8ck this sh&t, s/he needs this procedure done now and it’s gonna get done”.

I went back to the receptionist and explored all of the options – “you’ve got an ER in the adjacent hospital, right?” “Yes.” “And the ER has access to [diagnostic asset], right?” “Of course.” “Well, h/she needs this done – biology doesn’t care about hours of operation, so let’s call over to the ER while you process this normally, and everybody gets happy. Sound reasonable?”

She agreed and took the extra few minutes beyond her paid time to process the registration and arrange for ER admin to handle.

Things went well. We waited a bit more of course, but it wasn’t too bad. H/she got the diagnostic procedure done.

I know things don’t go down as smoothly as this, but you must not just walk about and assent to the Healthcare bureaucrats.

It always bothered me that hospital-related “offices” had “office hours”. As a nurse who has worked twelve-sixteen hours without pee-breaks, lifting 500 pound patients and switching from day to night shift and back again, I have no tolerance for “office hours” in Healthcare. It’s unprofessional – in fact, it can be downright dangerous. And it is dangerous.

“Well, sir, you should have had your heart attack at 10am. We’ll be happy to draw those troponins when the office opens at 8:30am tomorrow.”…

…”Oh, and be sure to bring your ID and insurance card, and plan to arrive 15 minutes early to fill out the paperwork. Thank you. Have a nice day!”

Don’t put up with it.

Don’t put up with it.

Don’t put up with it.

Biology doesn’t care for office hours nor hospital forms nor dopey human rules.

Nor should you.

The Ancient Romans would have burned down the whole barbaric system decades ago.

@HealthIsSocial@PhilBaumannNewsletter

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