Thursday, August 20, 2020

Pandemic Complacency

 Looking Around,

  I am seeing complacency in medicine about the coronavirus pandemic, which is not warranted. It's not everybody. 
I went to bed with this eating me, and awoke well before dawn, with the urge to address it in writing. 
  My daughter, Holly Day MD, is deeply engaged with her hospitalized patients and their families, and has sheparded too many young families through the death of a mother or father recently. Then they are gone.
This is not gone when it is out of your sight.
  You do not merely "have a role to play", like the youthful critical care pulmonologist from the new medical school, who gave a virtual talk to doctors and nurses and PAs at our clinic yesterday. "I'm a Pulmonologist. This is what I do. Here is what I would like you to do when patients leave the hospital" 
Pleasant enough young guy. No sign of passion. No sign of intellectual curiosity. No apparent knowledge of antiviral treatment ("That's funny. We're going to look at an article on Ivermectin in journal club tomorrow.") 
He pooh-poohd vitamin-D. "We don't use vitamin-D or vitamin-C or any of that in the hospital. There's no evidence that it works." 
"No, you're Wrong!" I quickly and emphatically blurted out. (You have to get a person's attention.) 
  He looked surprised and I said I would put plenty of information together for him, which I did. 
I went on a round of internet cutting and pasting again, and I'll post it separately, some updates on current medical therapeutics to fight the virus.
  Fighting an infectious disease is not merely supporting the body with IV fluids and a ventilator, while lying face down, and suppressing the immune system on dexamethasone, while blotting out consciousness with benzodiazepines, opioids and paralytic drugs.
  I don't intend to pick on the guy. He's young. He's got a prestigious position at a medical center, teaching students, interns and residents. Nobody calls him out for lack of knowledge.
He appears to be complacent. He is not the only one.
  Complacency is an inappropriate psychological defense mechanism, and it is one of the attitudes which relieves a person from the responsibility of having to figure out how to change things, to do them better, to solve a serious problem that is killing people, impairing people, and causing our impressive-yet-fragile economy to break and fail in a million little ways that we are all noticing as a million separate small failures. 
  Nobody is doing things right, and then they are done. 
Tag, you're it. Not my problem. I did my job. I have more check boxes to click , before I can quit today.

  We cull ourselves and we cull each other, but we mostly do it unconsciously. 
We would not intentionally kill/cull. Not yet.
I have been writing about mass-psychosis, and I realize that I have been overstating the case, as history systematically repeats itself. We are at mass-irritation, rising frustration, but it has backed off this summer; backed off to complacency.
We are approaching the fall harvest. What will we harvest? It won't be a harvest of plenty. Winter is coming, and the US is still unable to treat people for coronavirus as outpatients, even though the rest of the world is doing so and getting better at it, even India. 
Is something wrong with America when we cannot even consider doing what India is doing to treat sick people with cheap medicines before their bodies break down? (No offense, India. I'm trying to shame.)
Indians are not complacent about the coronavirus pandemic. Indians have little room for complacency as a society. 
Their basic life-support system (economy) is chronically stressed. Declaring the larger denomination bills void in 2016 was a big mistake, from which India is still trying to recover. 
India is responding to coronavirus appropriately now.

Fix something that you see is wrong, please, today.

Hair On Fire


  1. THank you, John, for this and the following article on Vit/hydrovy/etc. Thank you.

    1. Welcome Robin,
      I feel compelled to speak up, lately.

  2. YOur cognitive dissonance repression firewall must be about burnt thru.

  3. "If it keeps on rainin', the levee's gonna' break!"