So, as I started tracking discussion around Alameda Hospital (yeah, yeah…) I started wondering how Alameda Hospital staff felt about an elected Boardmember essentially calling the quality of service at Alameda Hospital “substandard.” I mean, it’s one thing for a citizen with an ax to grind to say that the Hospital sucks, but it reaches a whole other level when a Boardmember does it.
Because, regardless how the critique is caveated by Boardmember Elliott Gorelick that he wasn’t talking about anyone or any service in particular, I imagine that it’s fairly hard to not take it personally when your professional abilities are being questioned and openly declared as not as good. I mean, who wants to be told by someone who is speaking in generalities that you are doing a shitty job at your job?
And given that no one has written letters to the editor or developed a blog to say how offended they were by Elliott Gorelick’s statements, I just figured that either (a) no one was paying attention or (b) no one cared. Turns out, both were wrong. At Monday night’s Hospital Board meeting some Alameda Hospital doctors and nurses came out to express just how not cool they were with Elliott Gorelick’s statements about the quality of care at Alameda Hospital.
The excerpted video is here, it’s longish:
A few transcribed excerpts, from one doctor
Everyone in this room that’s involved with Alameda Hospital has a fiduciary responsibility to act on maintaining the quality of Alameda Hospital. To that end, particularly the Board members, if there is specific information that would improve the care then the medical staff would like to know.
This doctor then went on to present two separate reports, one that Elliott Gorelick has been touting as his evidence that small hospitals were inferior and one that pointed out almost the opposite.
Another doctor, after rattling off his resume and host of medical experience said:
The quality of care that the medical staff gives is superlative, if not better than many of the other hospitals that I’ve attended…if I were sick I would have no compunction about being attended to here, not only because of the quality of the medical staff, but the employees and the atmosphere of and the quality of care of Alameda Hospital.
And the nurses were represented last night when one came to say:
I am very offended by Mr. Gorelick’s disparaging remarks about what I see — from the nursing perspective because we’ve heard from the medical perspective — but from the nursing perspective I have a lot of respect for my colleagues and know that for many people who work at many different hospitals the standard of care here is excellent. And the reason why I chose this place and desire to stay here and give it my utmost and my very best is that I always see that the patients come first, which is not always true at the larger institutional hospitals that I’ve been at.
The next doctor didn’t mince too many words which she directed at Elliott Gorelick:
Your presence and perspective are sour and malignant. As it grows old and incapable of making its hatred effective.
And the last doctor trying to explain that the experience of the staff at Alameda Hospital is not just limited to Alameda Hospital:
To try to just pigeonhole us into some category that it may appear to you that we don’t have a life outside of here [Alameda Hospital] and this is all the we do, we are at other facilities, we interact with much larger medical staff than this, we interact with much larger budgets than this…
Finally, this letter was also read into the record was submitted by the Emergency Room doctors, excerpt although there are some pretty strongly worded language in there as well:
The implication both stated and implied is that the physicians who provide care to this community operate in a vacuum unaware or negligent of standards of care prevalent in the community at large. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Let’s just say, I think Elliott Gorelick is going to be unable to continue waving reports as “fact-based” argument without severe pushback from the staff who view his attempts of proving up Alameda Hospital’s inferiority as assaults on their professionalism.