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To follow my story: (See Someone Asked Me Today How I Deal With...)
- I studied HIPAA law in college (when I went back to school as an adult for my Bachelor's Degree) in two of my law classes including Human Resources Law. (See Time Travel - Is It Possible?)
- I studied HIPAA law in an HR Law class because HR deals with benefits, including health insurance. I worked very closely in many of my positions in the health insurance field with the HR departments of the companies we insured.
- I also attended many seminars over the years given by various insurance carriers, Master General Agents and The New York State Insurance Department.
- I learned about it in intricate detail when I studied for my broker's license.
- I dealt with it daily when I worked in Customer Service, servicing claims.
"Why the ER is different Protecting patient privacy in the ER is important, but it’s not necessarily the top priority, says Michael Tulloch, MD, an internist at a private practice in Potsdam, NY. “In the emergency room, the main priority is to save life and limb,” says Tulloch, who has also worked in several ERs in rural and metropolitan settings.“Adhering to HIPAA is of secondary importance, though efforts should be made to conform to HIPAA by both individual effort and administrative policy.” Read more
I've also been falsely accused: "You use the ER as a doctor's office." I find ambulance rides very scary. I get terrible anxiety riding in an ambulance. (See Snowstorm Anxiety When You Have Allergies, Asthma, Hashimotos, Cellulitis Issues) I use one ONLY when necessary. When I'm driven in a car, I sometimes have to wait a long time, in pain, in a crowded, uncomfortable waiting room. Most ER visits, if they don't admit me from the ER, are 8 to 10 hours. An ER copay was $150.00 as opposed to $30.00 for a doctor visit. I can think of many ways I'd rather spend $150.00 and 8 to 10 hours. I have never used the ER as a doctor's office. (See That Doesn't LOOK Gluten Free)
Back to Sunday, August 13, 2017. I'd been having a terrible pain on my lower left side. I was used to having stomach issues, I've had them about nine years now. This pain was getting intolerable.
I had called my current Gastro's office during the week. Her nurse contacted me back and said the doctor wants to order a CAT scan. The nurse assured me she would fax the prescription to the facility. I made an appointment for a CAT scan for Tuesday, August 15th. The nurse then gave me an appointment to see the Gastro on Monday, August 21st.
That Sunday, I was in excruciating pain, feeling nauseous, and I had the chills. I became concerned about kidney failure again. The last time I had gone to the ER with what I thought was another stomach problem, it turned out to be kidney failure. So... I thought, better safe than sorry. (See Why Am I Not Posting Recipes? Because IT Has Started Again!)
The Emergency Room was packed when I arrived at 10:35 a.m. I waited about an hour in the waiting room. Finally, it was my turn. They called me to intake, spoke with me, took my vitals and sat me on a chair in the intake area. I waited there another hour. I could see and hear every person who was called in, as could everyone else, however, I was engrossed in my book, not paying much attention.
They routinely take blood prior to being called into the treatment area. Very often they will also do an EKG. This time, as I sat in intake, they came around to take blood only. As the Phlebotomist did her thing, we were silent, my head turned away, eyes closed. (See I Peeked! I Was Horrified! I was Traumatized!)
We both overheard the next patient called to intake. He gave his history, then said, "And my 'wee wee' hurts lately." The Phlebotomist and I both giggled, both having overhead a man at least in his 60's referring to his genitalia as a "wee wee" to a professional. I just shook my head and said to the Phlebotomist, "Really?"
I was hoping to get out of there as quickly as possible. The family was gathering at 3:00 p.m for my son's birthday dinner, That didn't happen. I spent TWELVE hours in the ER.
I was finally taken back into the treatment area. They were so crowded, I was put on a cot in the hallway, near the nursing station. I could hear every word every doctor, nurse, staff member and technician said. I could also hear the radio calls coming from incoming ambulances.
I could see patients in the hallway and hear them talking with people accompanying them and their nurses and doctors. THE ER IN A LARGE METROPOLITAN AREA IS NOT PRIVATE, PERIOD, THE END.
No matter how I attempted to ignore, unless I had been deaf and blind, some things, I simply couldn't help but be aware of. I overheard what the EMTs were saying to the doctors and nurses with every gurney they wheeled in. At one point, gurneys were literally lined up waiting to get into the ER as if they were in line at the supermarket checkout counter.
I even heard a call that came over that I knew it was really serious. When the ambulance arrived, I saw the EMTs running, fast. I overheard doctors and nurses being called to one area of the emergency room. I watched medical staff go running. The EMTs didn't enter the way they normally did, they came in the glass doors and immediately turned down a hallway in the direction the doctors and nurses had run. It sent chills down my spine.
I was laying there watching the chaos when yet another stretcher was wheeled. This one from out East. I could tell by the name of the town on the EMTs jackets. A nurse directed them to a room with about 10 beds in it right next to me. I could overhear everything going on in that room.
I knocked on the bathroom door, as the sign instructed, and a woman's voice said, "Give me a minute." A nurse came over, knocked on the bathroom door, and asked the woman if she was ok. The woman responded, "My 'hooha' is burning."
I was stunned. Did this woman, who sounded to be at least 30 years old, just tell a nurse that she's having issues with her "hooha" or did I hear her wrong? For information on what a hooha is, click this link.
Not too long after the "hooha" incident, which apparently can be styled eight different ways, a young couple walked back to the treatment area. Obviously, they had been waiting up front a long time because the man was not happy. He got very angry when they put his wife on a cot in the hallway. "My wife just had a baby two weeks ago, we need to be seen, you are shoving her in a hallway to forget about her. Call a Gynecologist. She's going to bleed to death. She has a lot of pain in her 'vajayjay', people. What is wrong with all of you?"
I'm sorry, but, if you ask me, even through all your anger, you just can't be taken seriously when you scream throughout the ER that your wife's "vajayjay" is bleeding uncontrollably and hurts her. For more info on a "vajayjay" click here.
At that point, I was wheeled off for my CAT scan. I don't know what happened to the woman with the "vajayjay" problem. When I arrived back at my cot, she was gone and I never saw her again. I hope her "vajayjay" is better.
These people all reminded me of five-year-old children! (See You're Fat! Nannie Nannie Poo Poo) I could not believe they were 30 and older.
I realized I was one of the crowd with "wee wee" and "hooha" and "vajayjay" problems! I felt so honored. Well, I think I fit in. I was diagnosed with a bad UTI and, so I was told by a doctor and a nurse, the reason I was in such pain is that having kidney issues makes it feel worse. I don't know, I'm repeating what I was told. All I know is, I was thankful for the painkiller they shot into my IV. Though being drugged made the craziness of the ER even more interesting!
As I was awaiting antibiotics, I pondered, "What is this strange phenomenon? Why can't grown people say the proper names for their genitalia?" I've yet to overhear anyone walk into the ER with their arm bleeding profusely and exclaim, "Hurry, I cut my "choochey" and it won't stop bleeding.
Maybe this guy explains it fairly decently, at least when it comes to females. The male synonyms aren't far behind.
So what should we call the female genitalia?. That's up for debate. I personally choose to use the commonly accepted word "vagina" and yes, just like the debate article states, I'm well aware of what the vagina actually is. My mom taught me that by the time I was six years old and I'll be 53 soon, so, I get it. I feel vagina, though not COMPLETELY ACCURATE, covers it and beats "vajayjay" and "hooha" especially in a medical setting, speaking to professionals. Just my opinion.
Has no one ever taken an anatomy course? Does American society have such hangups about our bodies that we cannot say the words penis or vagina? After all, they are simply body parts and last I checked there was nothing bad, dirty or wrong with having either. Does society find these body parts somehow offensive? Do they feel that if they refrain from say the words and replace them with different words that it is the "polite" thing to do? Are people really THAT intimidated by genitalia? I don't understand this strange phenomenon!
It was an absolutely crazy day at the ER. When I was finally discharged and walked out the front doors, even an ambulance was in turmoil. Right there, in front of the entrance to the ER, was a huge truck hooking up an ambulance to be towed away. The ambulance was sick too! I wonder if they brought it to their mechanic and said, "our 'woowoowoo' broke down?"
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