Clinical Waste

TEPCO is to begin removing spent fuel rods at Fukushima reactor number 4.

A large mound of toxic trash was reported to be headed our way from there, though NASA has since said most of it has sunk.  That’s reassuring that this trash is now on the bottom of the ocean rather than on top floating. I guess ocean currents only exist on the top.

Alternet has an article on the The 10 Most Toxic Cities in the World and none of them are in the US or Europe. Isn’t that amazing.  I’ll bet at least one city here could make runner up, though.

But this diary is NOT about pollution.  No…it is about health care. And it is not about health insurance. It is about the health care industry. And mark my words, it is an industry. It is considered the largest growing field in the US right now.

My mother was an RN for a number of years. She got her nurses training at St. Luke’s Hospital in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Not a small hospital even when she was there in the early 1940s just before WWII. During WWII she was stationed at a large army hospital in France.  My mother and I would talk quite a bit about her experiences as a nurse and her time at St. Luke’s and in the army. She would talk of the the patients and accident victims from Bethlehem Steel. How there was no treatment at that time for “Blue Babies”.  She would tell me how rare it was to have a cancer patient. So rare in fact that only those nurses in the top part of their class ever got to see one. She herself in fact got to see a cancer patient exactly once in all the time she was at St. Luke’s.

I will admit though that diagnoses of cancer is an order of magnitude better now than at that time.  But has it improved so much that now cancer treatment is one of the most lucrative areas in medicine? That even central Florida – the Orlando area – has so many treatment centers I have lost count. I know personally of at least 6.  But I know personally of 5 people who died from cancer within 10 years.

And there are still a large number of situations that unless your doctor or nurse practitioner has some reason to look for it, cancer can – and often does – go undiagnosed until it is too late. One would need a head to toe exam every year or  6 months to find most of these. Even  Medicare would balk at that.

The medical profession is loath to point out the biggest reasons for the increase in cancer unless it’s politically correct to do so, like tobacco or now air pollution. And they will not say – but they know – that the chances of it being detected early enough to actually cure it are very small. This goes for many of the circulatory problems as well.

The situation is this. The health care problems in this country are not with insurance specifically.

It is with the heath care system itself.

Which is good at diagnosing problems that are obvious but only fair to poor at treating these problems. And poor to horrible at actually curing them. Yet the media and Hollywood and the medical profession publicly would like you to believe otherwise.

They know this but are either unwilling or unable to say so.  They know that supplements can in a lot of cases do a better job of keeping you blood sugar low, you BP on track and you triglycerides down than pharmaceuticals. Few – if any – will tell you so. I know however that they do know. My own health care provider just smiles and says “what every your doing, keep it up.”  But for some reason they cannot say. Not publicly and sometimes not privately.

But like George Carlin has said, “you don’t have to die. You’ll just expire like a magazine subscription.”

And the medical profession will not tell you that the longer you stay in a hospital, the greater you chances are of contacting a hospital bacteria that there a fewer and fewer antibiotics to fight. Or that unless you get your head blown off, drown or drop dead of an aneurysm or something similar – you will not die peacefully in you own home but in some medical facility all drugged up.

Yet they have the gal to charge the outrageous fees for all of this. The Hippocratic oath says “First do no harm.” I’m guessing this does not apply to your bank account or your psyche.  But they will not say anything about this either.

The health care profession in this country is an over priced comedy act in an over priced club that tells very bad jokes. When they say any thing at all.