Saturday, July 30, 2011

Not so simple

I was returning a phone call to a 57 y/o patient I had known for years.

Me: How can I help you?

Patient: It's real simple. I'm applying for disability. I just need for you to write a brief statement in my record that it's your opinion I contracted hepatitis C from exposure to blood while I was working.

In the midst of saying "Oh" and asking "what do you need again," I quickly located a consult note from an infectious disease specialist from about 7 years ago. The very first sentence of the note stated "he reports that he did intravenous drugs in the 1970's and feels that's how he was infected."

Me: I'm looking at a note from about seven years ago in your record. Let me read it to you...

Patient: Oh, I didn't know that was in there. Um, thanks. I'll get back to you later if I have any questions.

Me: You bet. Best to you always.

I then said a silent, "thank you computerized patient record!"

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