Thursday, January 24, 2013

Dr Wes Explains All

If you are a patient, or if you take care of patients, you may be wondering what is going on in American hospitals and doctors' offices. Why, you may ask, is Dr X quitting, or not taking new patients, or not taking Medicare patients, or only giving you five perfunctory minutes of his time.

Well, Dr Wes can explain. Dr Wes is a cardiologist. He is also the Don Quixote of American medicine,tilting his lance at his three great foes- the computerized world of the evil and mandatory Electronic Medical Record, the McPatient medicine promoted by the Corporate Medical Industrial Complex , and the Algorithms for All now required by the U.S. Government.

Dr Wes knows his quest is futile, but he is a man of honor, and he will fight on anyway.

Now, you may ask,why is all of this so evil? Computers are our servants.

No, says Dr Wes, they have two roles. Both hideous. They are our masters.And they demand we take care of them, and not the patient.

The Corporate Medical Complex. Isn't that a good thing? Surely they are more efficient than the public sector. After all, they are out to make money.

Yes, says Dr Wes, they are out to make money, and that is why you wait three hours to see a nurse practitioner or your doctor for a full three minutes. The money is in the volume, and this office needs to see 10 people an hour.

Now we are down to the U.S. Government which wants your doctor to use algorithms to treat you so that everyone is on the same standardized page and so that they can measure "outcomes".

I see you are getting nervous. You do not want your outcome to be measured. You only ask that your outcome is that you get out of the hospital alive and without going bankrupt.

Well, does not the government know best? Why rely on your doctor's wisdom or experience or brainpower or God forbid, his intuition? Those cannot be measured.
After all your government is the face you see or the voice you hear at the Social Security Office and at the IRS. Remember how competent they were. How efficient and prompt.

If you are still confused you can go to

I do, for he is a voice of reason.

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