Thursday, August 07, 2008

Further horrors...

Yesterday was kind of a crappy day for me. I went into work anxious about having to interact with a particular patient. He is someone who thinks that I am the worst social worker, but will not tell me directly to my face. He will however regale my co-workers, the doctor, etc. about my perceived incompetence. I've confronted him directly but this didn't much work. *sigh*

But, amazingly, my interaction with this patient turned out to be the least of my worries. You see, a rival company had decided to open a Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) clinic not far from us. We've known that this was happening, and in fact the RN who left our company earlier this year went to help open it. It had been something of a relief to see her go...her interpersonal skills when working with other staff left much to be desired.

We knew that the doctors in one of the groups that sees clients at our clinic were either directly financially invested in the opening of the clinic or are getting a better compensation from that company. So we were expecting that we would lose at least some of those patients to that clinic, and likely not get new referrals to our PD program from them once it opened.

Well, unfortunately, it's a bit worse than that. One of the doctor's from that group had her clinic yesterday, and told the patients that she sees that they were moving all the patients over to the new clinic and they should expect a call from the nurse over there to set up an appointment.

This is shitty on a couple of levels. 1) It gives the patients the impression that they do not have a choice. 2) It set up a situation in which the patient would have to be very vocal about their desire to stay if they wanted to...and kind of left us unable to say anything with the doctor there. 3) The patients are, in my opinion, leaving a staff they are now comfortable with to go to a new place with a new staff (for some this would be the 3rd instance of loss in this year alone...I don't really want to get into the others). 4) There is a sense of partnership that builds in working with these doctors, and there is a very real sense of betrayal that they would completely disregard this feels yucky (I know it's just business, but I get to feel my feelings anyway). 5) There is a bit of personal outrage, as I had asked one of the doctor's a couple of months ago directly if he knew if any other patients would be transferring to the new clinic (they had transferred one earlier to get stuff in line to get CMS certification), and he had said he didn't know. He obviously knew that they would be moving all their patients and lied directly. I've lost all sense of faith in him.

I am feeling less angry today than I was yesterday. I got some of my feelings out vicariously last night by going to see The Mummy, and imagining that the doctors in that group where the mummy and the evil general.

I'm glad that it's mostly the weekend for me. I have time to enjoy my life outside of work and remind myself before Monday that there are people who have common decency in this world.

1 comment:

Aravis said...

That sucks! Yeah, it's business, but it still sucks. I'm so sorry!