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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bureaucrats and Tornadoes

I guess I've been in the medical bidness way too long and have also dealt with federal gubment nonsense way too long. The other day after the massive tornado devastated Joplin, MO, and destroyed the hospital, I read that Xray films were found some 70 miles away in Springfield.
The first thing that crossed my mind was, "Some bureaucrat is going to accuse that hospital of committing a HIPAA violation." Yes, if you have not heard of HIPAA it is another one of those onerous federal gubment laws designed to protect your confidentiality. In reality it is another burdensome regulation that forces hospitals to spend gozillions of dollars in compliance with threat of massive fines and penalties and/or sanctioning from Medicare. Of course this is just another way the feds drive up the cost of healthcare. It is all for YOUR protection, doncha see?

Well I'm waiting for someone to accuse St. John's Regional Medical Center of not being prepared for an EF5 tornado. Their unpreparedness caused them to release confidential Xrays into the atmosphere for all the world to see. Before long you'll see mandates that hospitals build hardened structures in which they must store their confidential documents. These structures must be able to withstand EF5 tornadoes, Richter scale 10 earthquakes, Cat 5 hurricanes, 100 megaton nuclear weapons, the flood of Noah, and Texas sized asteroid strikes. Of course the hospitals will have to comply with the mandates at their own expense. Doncha just love when the federal gubment mandates all this expensive stuff for hospitals and then wants to cut their reimbursement?

No, we don't give a rat's ass that half the town was flattened and that over 100 people were killed! No, we just can't have any of those precious documents escaping!

Now come on, y'all. If I thought of this, you know there are a bunch of other people out there thinking the same thing. Some of them are no doubt bureaucrats with way too much time on their hands, trying to justify their existence. Only the horror of the Joplin tragedy has kept them quiet so far.

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