I was hoping to stay away from politics and the virus today, but… ABC just had to work my last good nerve.
HEADLINE: Health care workers fear losing their jobs during coronavirus pandemic.
We’re expected to believe that during a global pandemic of “epic proportions”, that small and rural hospitals are laying 43,000 people off in order to focus exclusively on emergency room treatment of patients, per the story.
“This may seem counterintuitive as we read daily of health care providers caring for COVID-19 patients stretched to capacity, but other types of health services have been shutting down like the rest of the service economy. This month’s losses were concentrated in ambulatory care settings, including physician offices, dental offices, and offices of other practitioners. As non-essential visits were cancelled, and states began ordering social distancing, such offices were closed. Even telemedicine visits, directly linking providers to patients, reduce the use of support staff.”
Here’s why I’m calling BS:
1) Rural areas, despite all the false stories of them struggling to cope, have seen minimal intrusion by the coronavirus. Everywhere you look, it’s URBAN areas with dense concentrations of people that are getting hit the hardest. New York City being the poster child there; high population, EXTREMELY crowded and it’s an international city. Placerville CA, by contrast (with a population of roughly 11,000) hasn’t seen a single case at all.
2) “Ambulatory Care” is walk-in type services. Nothing in that definition implies non-essential. Dentists are walk-in and while many are putting routine teeth cleaning visits on hold, they’re certainly still seeing people for impacted wisdom teeth, chipped or knocked out teeth, cavities, etc… Same is true with all other non-ER medical treatment. It’s only the completely routine and preventative stuff that’s being delayed.
3) Any place where the coronavirus IS an issue, personnel are getting shuffled around to other departments to help deal with it. Doing something to care for patients, (with the virus or otherwise), in some way. Even if it’s just running supplies and records back and forth.
4) It flies completely in face of the constant barrage of stories about there not being enough health care workers to deal with this “crisis”.
You just don’t furlough health care workers in the middle of a pandemic UNLESS they’re in a completely non-helpful role, such as the gift shop AND / OR they are NOT willing to come in and help for fear of the virus. That IS happening with a few health care workers too. One of my fellow bloggies here was forced to make that decision and opted to stay home. I can’t judge her either because I don’t have a small child to think about as a factor to such a decision. She does.
WHAT’S NOT SAID IN THE STORY:
Even if we assume this story IS true at all, let’s consider a couple of key facts that were left out. Can’t put in important details if you’re trying to create blind panic for ratings, right?
1) What jobs these people have. I’d seriously bet that none of the furloughed people are actually doctors, or nurses. Hell, even janitors are needed to clean and sterilize areas.
2) How many of these “lost jobs” are people that were just too afraid to come to work thanks to the media-created hysteria. There’s a HUGE difference between that and a hospital saying “we just don’t need you now”. As a side note, I’d imagine a few of them are even normal retirements.
3) That, per the CDC, there are a total of 18,000,000 (18 million) health care workers in the United States. Now, for those who aren’t willing to do the math themselves, that means that the 43,000 “lost” jobs, if they’re real at all, amount to .24% (a hair less than one quarter of one percent OR 1 in 400) of the total heath care workforce.
Is ANYBODY out there starting to see just how far the Media will go to exploit a crisis and outright hurt people for the sake of ratings?
Let the flogging begin!
By the way… ABC’s parent company is Disney. THIS kind of manipulative, shoddy reporting is what your money spent on Disney stuff goes to support.