Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Clear as mud

I love that hoary maxim. Clear as mud.

There's a regulation on the books we should be thankful for today. It's called "The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996." Mouthful. That's why they call it HIPAA.

Buried in this regulation, which appears to be about your right to take health insurance with you when you go on the Bahamas....without a lot of language about your rights to privacy at your doctor's office. And that, folks, is clear as mud.

I work in a doctor's office - really an urgent care center, occupational medicine clinic. Which, I'm sure, means nothing to you, but requires me to spell out "occupational" to people and explain what it means at least three times a day.

But be thankful. Because if it wasn't for HIPAA, and my inherent avoidance of gossip (ha!), this blog would be filled with stories of people who came in to see the doctor because they had a _____ stuck in their _____. Or, the young girl who managed to ______ to her ______.

Because of HIPAA, you won't have to answer the girl at the front desk when she asks you why you are there to see the doctor. Unless you really want to go into details about the _____ that has suddenly appeared under your ______.

You'll never know about the person who worked for _____ that tested ______ for _____! And yes, if you get hurt at work, odds are good that you'll be tested for drugs and alcohol before you receive treatment for your injury. But no one will know - except for your boss, of course. And the guy in human resources. And your wife, when you have to tell her why you got fired. So when it comes to drugs, or alcohol DURING BUSINESS HOURS....just say no, okay?

Then there's the guy who had a really, really big _____, but didn't know it until he fell on it, and boy, did it ever ______!!!!!!
Major yuck factor, there.

And that one really disgusting ______ that just ______ on someone's ______! Or the time the guy came in sure that he was dying of ______, but it was really just ______.

So rest assured...if you ever have to come into my place at work...I won't be writing about your horrendous _______, or your lack of _______, or even your grossly distended ______.

I won't breath a whisper. You can trust me.

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