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Patient Safety
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White wall
    of Silence
Conflict Of
Psychology of
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Trust Us
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Free Speech
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Thomas Jefferson said that given the choice between government without newspapers and newspapers without government, he would choose to have newspapers.

In medicine we have government without newspapers. Patients cannot find out what they need to know to make informed choices. No one in medicine records or reports the information patients need to know the most. So patients will have to.

This page has moved to the page at this link
where it has been updated.

This page has moved to the page at this link
where it has been updated.

This page has moved to the page at this link

Catherine Wood and Gwen Graham

Nurses' Murder Game

Catherine Wood and Gwen Graham - Two nurses who together picked victims whose combined initials, if murdered in the correct order, would spell out "murder" in what they called their "Murder Game." They picked easy targets, elderly women who were weak. When their victims fought back harder than expected the nurses gave up - temporarily. If a couple of patients complained that nurses were trying to kill them, Wood and Graham knew no one would believe them. But if more than that did they worried they might get in trouble so they stopped. Until they saw that none of their victims complained. Wood and Graham learned that they were free to hone their skills through trial and error until they figured out how to do it, because none of their victims complained.

I have heard people in medicine say that this example shows that the problem is that patients didn't bring their concerns to the authorities. I have not seen anyone anywhere in medicine suggest what it says about complaint mechanisms in medicine when even victims of attempted strangulation were not heard from. There is no appreciation in medicine for what an imposing and unified monolith medicine is to a patient trying to complain about a member of that profession. Say that to someone in medicine and they scoff, which is the very first syllable of "unified and imposing."

Medicine is not interested in the predicament of patients with complaints and learns nothing from examples like these. There is no legitimate complaint mechanism in medicine, only pretenses of such. To say nothing of the vacuum of law enforcement in medicine. Medicine is so insensitive to the experience of patients that it has no appreciation for how complaining comes back to haunt patients.

Doctors can call the state medical boards that are run by and for doctors. Nurses can call the nursing boards that represent nurses. Hospitals have hospital associations. Patients have who? No one. This is how patient safety is handled when healthcare providers have the ultimate authority over how safe patients will be. The words "complaint" or "lawsuit" frequently are modified by the word "frivolous" when uttered by people in medicine. Patients need someone outside of medicine to complain to about medicine. There needs to be an institution representing patients. State Patients' Boards might be one.

More Examples


Home | Table of Contents | It's a Path
Silence versus Patient Safety
Loyalty versus Patient Safety
The White Wall of Silence versus Patient Safety
Blacklisting Patients
Freedom of Speech for Patients
Medical Complaints - How to

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It's a path

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Revised September 25, 2012