Health

Corruption in hospitals

I think of a hospital as a place of nurturing and care when I, or loved ones, get severely ill.  I do not envision them as money-making “businesses,” nor do I look upon them as ever being out of integrity.  Perhaps it’s because I live in Canada, and it may not be as much of an issue here, or it could be that I am just really, really naive.  🙂

So, when I come across articles like this one that speaks to homeless people being used as pawns so that a hospital can make money, it makes me really wonder what is actually happening in all the areas of the “business” of health care.  There is lots of info already out there on pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, etc. etc. etc.

Perhaps the people involved don’t see themselves as being out of integrity, since they are actually giving a homeless person a place to live for a few days every once in awhile, with meals and fluids, etc.  However, the overhead costs of them doing so in a hospital setting surely exceeds a regular shelter meeting those same needs.  And, who is ultimately paying for all this?  Hmmm…

To your HEALTH and prosperity,

Sue

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Saturday, August 9th, 2008 Money & Health/Wellbeing No Comments

Sick People Going to Work

I recently ended a job working for a “big box” retailer in a little town.  Prior to this, I had never worked for an employer that hadn’t paid for sick time.  This particular retailer had us earning sick time, based on the hours worked, however, the first day of any sickness was not a “paid” day off.  During my 7 1/2 months of employment, I did get ill a couple of times — one illness lasted 16 days straight.  Out of those sixteen days, I was actually away from my workplace for 3 days in total.  It happened to be a viral illness that couldn’t be treated with medication, and fluids and rest would have eased the symptoms significantly.  Luckily, I had a few weekends in that span of time to do some recuperating, but ultimately, if I hadn’t had to go to work, would the illness have lasted so long?

Going to work ill was not a great experience — not for me and certainly not for the customers and the staff I worked with.  So, why did I do it?  Ummm…for the money?  Of course.  On my meager wage, I could barely pay my bills, let alone have a “buffer” to create an “emergency fund.”  So, if my employer couldn’t support me while I was ill, who else would?

This article spurred my interest in writing about the topic today because it lets me know I am not alone.  In whose best interest is it that an employee go to work sick?  Nobodies.

To your health AND prosperity.

Sue

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To Your Prosperity

I’ve been intuitively guided to sign each of my posts with “To Your Prosperity.”  Asking myself the question of why this is, I find the answer in the different definitions of prosperity.

Prosperity:

  • an economic state of growth with rising profits and full employment
  • the condition of prospering; having good fortune
  • wealth from the old English word “weal”, which means “well-being” or “welfare”. The term was originally an adjective to describe the possession of such qualities.
  • success, good fortune, wealth
  • the condition of being prosperous; having good fortune; successfulness; affluence; riches; success

The opposite of which is “poverty,” defined as:

  • the state of having little or no money and few or no material possessions 
  • Poverty is deprivation, the denial of access to those things which make a life of dignity possible, including not only food, shelter and safe drinking water, but also such as ‘intangibles’ as the opportunity to learn, to engage in meaningful employment or to enjoy the respect of one’s fellow citizens.
  • The quality or state of being poor or indigent; want or scarcity of means of subsistence; indigence; need; Any deficiency of elements or resources that are needed or desired, or that constitute richness; as, poverty of soil; poverty of the blood; poverty of ideas 

My wish to all people has nothing to do with money — it has to do with an abundance of peace, health, happiness and well-being for all.  I can see where the definitions have aligned with this wish — can you?

To your prosperity,

Sue

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Sunday, July 6th, 2008 Money & Prosperity No Comments

Poor People’s Diseases

I picked up the latest ALIVE magazine at the local health food store, and as I was flipping through, I had something jump off the page at me.  It’s an ad for a product (which will remain unnamed, as I will not promote something I have not looked into thoroughly) that is supposedly made to help circulation and your heart health.

What caught my attention was in a list of supposed benefits of the product, one of them being…helping with “economy class syndrome.”  Hmmm…I thought.  What does that mean?  Are people who fly economy at risk for health issues?  The little plug states…

“(product) has been shown to counteract swelling in the lower limbs and decreased platelet activity that can occur as a result of prolonged sitting and decreased air pressure prevalent in airplane cabins.  This syndrome is known as “economy class syndrome” or Deep Vein Thrombosis.”

Gee, I didn’t know I was at risk of something if I didn’t fly first class?  Did you?  

But it got me thinking…are there “poor people’s diseases?”  Well, yup…in doing a search on just that sequence of words, there ARE poor people’s diseases!  I found a couple of links that shed a bit of light on the subject for me.

The first link is quite dated (2001), but informed me of the three specific “poor people’s diseases,” specifically sleeping sickness, Chagas disease and leishmaniasis.  One profound statement from that site is: 

“Drugs are not developed according to public health need, but according to profitability,” laments Dr Pecoul, who adds that a new paradigm is urgently needed to address this fatal imbalance.”

This article taught me that there is some good news – yup… “aids is NOT a poor people’s disease!”  How lucky for us all!  This paragraphs kind of sums it up…

“As fatal illnesses go, AIDS is the best one for a poor person to catch because rich people get it, too. The other diseases might as well hang out a sign: “Poor People Only.” They offer researchers no profitable market. They have little political constituency. There is no well-connected group of sufferers who stage protests and lobby pharmaceutical companies and Congress to develop better medicines or make existing ones more available. The response to disease is political: the illnesses of invisible people usually stay invisible.”

In both articles, it also added the diseases tuberculosis and malaria as well.  Hmmm…

To your prosperity,

Sue

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Thursday, June 26th, 2008 Money & Health/Wellbeing No Comments

Don’t Shoot The Messenger

I’m staying at my sweetie’s parent’s place right now (will write about that story in another posting), and one of the gifts in staying here is that they don’t have a television.  Instead, they read, and listen to the CBC radio, which remains on from morning til late night.  

Upon arising this morning, I was greeted with an interview on the radio of two people — one who work(ed) for a food supply company, and one who works for a hospital (as a janitor) in BC.  The story is around a rat infestation in both of those workplaces, and how it first came to light, how it progressed, what each of the interviewees roles was in that process (ie told their bosses right away, really cared about the workplace, etc).  One of the fellows (in the food supply company) was let go for his role in caring about the problem, and the other fellow was given a very difficult time, but recently received a letter saying they would not pursue the issue any further, and his job was safe.

When asked what the real issue was, the fellow from the food supply company stated it was the money factor — that it was a dollars and cents issue, and instead of spending $200 to fix the problem in it’s infancy, they only felt like investing $50 dollars, and it escalated to the point of tons of food being infested.  Hmmm….

And a lesson to all other staff from that management that if you “whistleblow” about a problem, you WILL lose your job.  The interviewees discussed the fear in the workplace, and that employees were too afraid to say anything, despite the consequences to the workplace and the impact on the consumer, as well as putting their own health at risk.  

Interesting…

To your prosperity,

Sue

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Thursday, June 26th, 2008 Money & Employment No Comments
 

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