So I’m getting ready to present to my attending about a patient with lower back pain, and she pulls out a letter she’s received from the Department of Justice. It names her (as well as about 30 other physicians) as providing vicodin to a woman in the ER.
The following is a two page listing of all the patient’s prescriptions: The patient’s name used, the date, the hospital, the prescription. Prescription after prescription, over the span of a month or two.
So, what the hell? So the Department of Justice is allowed to have access to this data to prosecute the woman and alert the physicians’ to their mistake, but the physicians themselves can’t get access to it to stop the woman’s drug habit?
What a freaking joke. Reason #213 for some sort of nationalized information system.
(The woman had a good story–we went back and looked at the ER note. Said she had a history of Crohn’s, complete with abdominal scar, and had an appointment in 2 days with her doctor, who was out of town.) See also: “I Usually Get Dilaudid and Phenergan.”