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Do you says things to folks in public? Re COVID


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Do you, as a PA, say things in general to folks in public about health issues/public health concerns?

Has it changed with COVID?

I was in a big box store today out of necessity, mask on. Cleaned my own cart as it didn’t appear the staff was. Washington has a state mask mandate since July 7. 

Got inside the store and roughly ⅓ of the far too many people in the building had their masks pulled down below their noses and I counted 5-6 who just took the damn thing off. Roughly ⅓ of the staff not wearing correctly and management did nothing. 

Many people wearing a sad excuse for a tiny plastic shield that only covers the lips and then sliding them down to boot.

Got my necessities and got the hell out. Called their corporate office and filed a complaint. 

I didn’t say anything to folks directly in the store for A. Fear of being shot, B. I could easily make a scene as I was a bit enraged.

B.C. - Meaning before COVID - I said things.

I spoke to a Mom once when I heard her kid coughing uncontrollably - BAD whoop sound. She was nice and said she would get him seen right away. Told her how contagious and miserable pertussis can be. 

Helped an elderly person nearly in resp distress sit down while summoning a manager to call 911 and maybe find their defibrillator just in case. 

These instances were well received and folks were thankful someone spoke up. 

Now I feel like science is dying and common sense is buried and rotting. My medical offerings are seen as political pandering and conspiracy theories.

My faith in mankind is dwindling while thousands are dying or becoming maimed by a virus.

Deep Sigh 

 

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I don’t bother....there are people on this board who think mask cause “CO2 toxicity” and that hydroxychloroquine cures covid. Engaging the medically illiterate on such issues seems futile at this point...as said above, I just keep to myself

Edited by JoeM
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Nope.  Didn’t before, and definitely not now.  Too many “sore throats x 1 hour” made me realize the science comprehension of the average person is less than my Maltese dog.

Im pretty much hunkered down in our house.  Haven’t been to a store in months, and frankly, my life is better for it.

i do get the (actually pretty rare) patient at work who whines about not getting seen in person for their “6 month”, which are pretty much “how are you? Any changes? No?”.  Most people are understanding, and if they need to get seen, we’ll arrange it.  Otherwise, they will get a lecture from me about putting my team and their fellow vets at risk for essentially nothing.  
 

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6 hours ago, JoeM said:

I don’t bother....there are people on this board who think mask cause “CO2 toxicity” and that hydroxychloroquine cures covid. Engaging the medically illiterate on such issues seems futile at this point...as said above, I just keep to myself

You put that in the plural; I've only counted one.

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I belong to a message board composed of fellow retirees from a Fortune 50 company.  I post regularly there on COVID-19 related topics.  It's pretty well received.  I do see some folks there who are excessively hopeful about the latest treatment fad.  I see more that are hyper cautious, e.g one person was talking about wearing a tyvek suit, gloves, and mask to drive their car home from the shop - after they had cleaned it in the shop's parking lot.  This is a population that's older, usually with better healthcare, and better finances than the average public cross-section.

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To answer Reality Check 2's question, I have butted in previously on matters similar to your description of incidents BC.  I have not, and probably never will, say anything regarding COVID.  Unfortunately, I believe the most likely thing to occur is one of the multiple iterations of a quote famously (and potentially, incorrectly) attributed to Mark Twain:

"Never argue with a fool; onlookers may not be able to tell the difference."

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.”

 

Edit: I'll add...I covered one of our UCs yesterday and had 13 telemed visits for kids that were all at the same local overnight camp.  All started having symptoms in the last 12-36 hours (including several that lost taste/smell).  If parents are willing to play politics with their kid's lives...then there isn't much hope of changing their minds.  One mother even threatened to sue me if she loses her job, because I told her that SHE must also quarantine because of exposure.  My response, "Yeah...that's not how it works..." and hung up.  Of course I also had the fun of contacting the local health department with patient names so they can follow up (glad I don't have that job) and also contact the camp and other attendees.

Edited by mgriffiths
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After many years of EMS and initially playing "Ricky Rescue" in my early 20s I've stopped talking to folks about medicine outside of my work hours. Unless I witness something quasi-emergencyish. 

In regards to masking and COVID, I'm a little too fried to deal with the confrontation. After having my own family members lose their #$_@ with me stressing the importance of distancing/masks etc it's just not worth it to me.

I'd take a similar route as you mentioned RC, firing off an email after getting out as soon as I could.

Hate where we are at, politicization of public health...

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4 hours ago, MediMike said:

Hate where we are at, politicization of public health...

Public health is, by definition, public...polis....politic....political.  It is all about balancing the removal of one's rights versus the gain to the public.

Imagine how pissed off Londoners were after John Snow proved it wasn't healthy to $hit in the Thames River that everyone got their drinking water from.

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11 minutes ago, Boatswain2PA said:

Public health is, by definition, public...polis....politic....political.  It is all about balancing the removal of one's rights versus the gain to the public.

Both false. The definitions of these terms are easily Googled. That you would inappropriately link them is the problem in a nutshell.

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27 minutes ago, Boatswain2PA said:

Public health is, by definition, public...polis....politic....political.  It is all about balancing the removal of one's rights versus the gain to the public.

Imagine how pissed off Londoners were after John Snow proved it wasn't healthy to $hit in the Thames River that everyone got their drinking water from.

and yet, they listened. Pretty sure no one said " I am going to drink water from the broad st pump because it is my right to make my own decisions...."  No one cares at the airport when TSA looks through their bags and makes them strip, but ask someone to wear a mask in walmart and it's grounds for alerting the media. I would argue wearing a mask is more important than taking away my 4 oz aftershave because it is too big. 

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The US has never had a robust public health system.

Most citizens don't even know what public health is or care.

Folks care about their "rights" but not their responsibilities as a citizen. Freedom isn't free.

America has become about total freedom from any responsibilities - one's own health, your neighbors' health, the infrastructure of the town/state/nation. 

It is a free for all. Grab all you can, screw anyone else and don't dare ask anyone to do something for the common good.

It sucks.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Reality Check 2 said:

The US has never had a robust public health system.

Most citizens don't even know what public health is or care.

Folks care about their "rights" but not their responsibilities as a citizen. Freedom isn't free.

America has become about total freedom from any responsibilities - one's own health, your neighbors' health, the infrastructure of the town/state/nation. 

It is a free for all. Grab all you can, screw anyone else and don't dare ask anyone to do something for the common good.

It sucks.

 

 

Sadly, this seems spot on....

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2 hours ago, mcclane said:

Both false. The definitions of these terms are easily Googled. That you would inappropriately link them is the problem in a nutshell.

I was expecting those with the capability of practicing medicine to be able to move beyond simple dictionary/google definitions and more toward the application of those definitions.  Apparently I was wrong in some cases.

Every public health measure is a conflict between individual rights and the impact of the public.  From sewer and potable water to restaurant licensure to car seat requirements, it's all about imposing on someone's rights for the good of the public.   From a political science perspective, this also applies to every just law.
 

2 hours ago, EMEDPA said:

and yet, they listened. Pretty sure no one said " I am going to drink water from the broad st pump because it is my right to make my own decisions...."

No, because commoners/peasants didn't really have any idea of their "rights" beyond very basic personal property rights.  They didn't have a "right" to education, health care, clean water, social justice, etc.  

However Snow did encounter fierce resistance, both in the scientific/medical community as well as in the political world with his outrageous idea that something invisible in the water was killing so many people.  The record is very clear on that.  

 

2 hours ago, EMEDPA said:

No one cares at the airport when TSA looks through their bags and makes them strip

Lots of people care about this.  I care about this, and I find it an unnecessary disruption and waste of time and money (how much product is thrown away!) for a very small, if any, benefit in actual security.

 

2 hours ago, GetMeOuttaThisMess said:

My years in public health were VERY political

 

Because, despite some people's ignorance about what PUBLIC health is about, everything PUBLIC is POLITICAL.  

2 hours ago, Reality Check 2 said:

The US has never had a robust public health system.

I don't want to speak for you (so please correct me if I'm wrong) but I think you mean to say the US has never had a robust FEDERAL public health system.

The public health system, like most government/political systems in the US, is decentralized because we are supposed to be a union of independent states.  This allows for states to have whatever public health (or other gov/pol system) necessary for their situation.  New York City has a robust public health system that covers darn near everything (not referring to quality, simply what falls under the purview of the pub health system).  

Where I currently live there is also robust public health with city water and sewer, food safety, WIC, low income health clinics, vigorous code enforcement of buildings, a Mayor/city council who has required everyone in public to wear masks, etc.  However they still allow for open burning of your trash which I think is ridiculous!

Meanwhile, outside of the tiny little town where I am building our home, the only thing code enforcement really cares about is where the well is and approving the septic system.  

 

2 hours ago, Reality Check 2 said:

Folks care about their "rights" but not their responsibilities as a citizen. Freedom isn't free.

I think most people DO get this, however it is those who scream about their rights (while ignoring their responsibilities) get the most attention (usually people from the extremes of both sides of the political spectrum).

 

2 hours ago, Reality Check 2 said:

It is a free for all. Grab all you can, screw anyone else and don't dare ask anyone to do something for the common good.

Move out to the country RC2, it's much different from that.  

2 hours ago, EMEDPA said:

I would argue wearing a mask is more important than taking away my 4 oz aftershave because it is too big. 

I concur.

Edited by Boatswain2PA
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2 hours ago, Reality Check 2 said:

The US has never had a robust public health system.

Most citizens don't even know what public health is or care.

Folks care about their "rights" but not their responsibilities as a citizen. Freedom isn't free.

America has become about total freedom from any responsibilities - one's own health, your neighbors' health, the infrastructure of the town/state/nation. 

It is a free for all. Grab all you can, screw anyone else and don't dare ask anyone to do something for the common good.

It sucks.

 

 

Not to mention the death threats that public health officials have been getting and many chose to resign 

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1 hour ago, Boatswain2PA said:

I was expecting those with the capability of practicing medicine to be able to move beyond simple dictionary/google definitions and more toward the application of those definitions.  Apparently I was wrong in some cases.

You provided an incorrect definition of public health. Anyone who appreciates medicine should understand the importance of being exact when it comes to basic terminology.

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On 8/3/2020 at 6:29 PM, Boatswain2PA said:

I haven't heard of any of these.  If legitimate, they should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Dr. Fauci has already publicly reported having had to bring on a security team because of threats again both him and his family.  Multiple other stories around the country of public health officials being verbally and physically threatened, cases of vandalism, etc.

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Our local county health officer had morons protesting masks at his house. That is inappropriate.

My dad recommended this book - tries to explain why science and knowledge are being abandoned. 

I am still astounded on a daily basis that folks are THIS brazenly ignorant.

A patient today is convinced that Bill Gates helped develop COVID to profit from a vaccine. WTH?

The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters 1st Edition, Kindle Edition

by Tom Nichols (Author) 
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1 hour ago, Reality Check 2 said:

Our local county health officer had morons protesting masks at his house. That is inappropriate.

My dad recommended this book - tries to explain why science and knowledge are being abandoned. 

I am still astounded on a daily basis that folks are THIS brazenly ignorant.

A patient today is convinced that Bill Gates helped develop COVID to profit from a vaccine. WTH?

The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters 1st Edition, Kindle Edition

by Tom Nichols (Author) 

Conspiracy theory echo chambers like Breitbart spilling over into social media creating a constant sense of mistrust in everything.  Live free or die sounds like a great bumper sticker until your living free causes me or my family to die.  Then we have a problem.  People like this want the benefit of living in a society, but don't want to take responsibility for being part of that society.  They would be better off on an island alone with their absolute freedom and freedom from things out to get them...like science.

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