Friday, May 28, 2010
HOW IS NORMA?
A sweet grandmother telephoned St. Joseph 's Hospital. She timidly asked, "Is it possible to speak to someone who can tell me how a patient is doing?" The operator said, "I'll be glad to help, dear. What's the name and room number of the patient?"
The grandmother in her weak, tremulous voice said, "Norma Findlay, Room 302." The operator replied, "Let me put you on hold while I check with the nurse's station for that room."
After a few minutes, the operator returned to the phone and said, "I have good news. Her nurse just told me that Norma is doing well. Her blood pressure is fine; her blood work just came back normal and her physician, Dr. Cohen, has scheduled her to be discharged tomorrow."
The grandmother said, "Thank you. That's wonderful. I was so worried. God bless you for the good news."
The operator replied, "You're more than welcome. Is Norma your daughter?"
The grandmother said, "No, I'm Norma Findlay in Room 302. No one tells me a damned thing."
This was obviously a blatant violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. An investigation is ongoing.