Sunday, February 22, 2009

HIPAA Issue and Court....4/11

One of the issues that the lawsuit against the blog (and me, by default) pressed was HIPAA. But, as a result of the lawsuit, the blog has been gone over systematically by numerous agencies and individuals, looking to prove (or disprove) the case. Since I haven't heard from the government (under whose purview that falls), nor any individual whose PI might have been identified, it would seem that dog don't hunt.... Any related information that I might have received that could have remotely been considered a disclosure seemed more from the individuals themselves, or family, and I've been fairly reluctant to even put that out if it was identifiable.

Comments themselves, without going through a fair amout of trouble (even then it comes to best guess), are anonymous, so justification of making me disclose the identity of the contributors becomes moot. I've only gone through the trouble once, and that was for that stalker I had for a while.

I wonder if a statment for the court could be procurred from the administration of to that effect...sure would take some of the wind out of Essent's sails.

That leaves defamation causing financial loss. I liked the comment from another post: That I might have kept Essent from over-extending (kind of like what Hud did with ARCON, too big, too fast). I don't know that I like the idea that I, by default, kept Essent going, but it could be possible. Who's to say that it was just the economic down-turn that did it?

As to false statements, they really don't want someone going through those areas in their records. Especially emails. And, if they somehow lost some of the emails, I would imagine that there have been enough IT people dismissed that might be able to shed light in that area--like where the manditory backups are, or maybe a copy they kept of the email server log. Honor bright!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

From The Front Lines....3/13

These were pulled from anonymous comments submitted to the blog yesterday. Most deal with Essent's anti-blog policy.

Heard that last week on South Campus there were 30 patients and only three nurses to care for them. Heard the nurses filed a "safe haven".
And one of Ducky's "8 Points" is The Patient Comes First?
Rrrrrright....that goes along with "Employees are our most valuable resource"!
Safe Haven is a notification of a dangerous situation--in this case loading three nurses with 10 patients apiece. Some patients require a higher nursing to patient ratio. If this was the situation, it was appropriate. Just remember, we can't talk about being short-staffed....

So Essent sent out a memo that stated the following:
"It starts out with Happy New Year..
and in one of those small paragraphs it has a little note informing about the increasing number of complaints (anonymous on-line internet "blogging".) "This will not be tolerated and will lead to immediate termination of employment and is a violation of company policy and the Federal Law!" The Health Information Director at MVH posted a comment on the blog using her name and title. So is she still employed or is it just to scare the employees?

Quote from "Kathy DiPietro, RHIT said...
I am the Director of the Health Information Mangement Department at MVH and I am tired of being lied about by ex-employees"
But, is she really? I can't tell. And who would be stupid enough...need I say more?

The Federal Law the memo was citing was in regards to HIPAA info. Posting priviledged information is a violation of federal law. However, I hope he can prove it!!!
Mr. Fletcher is the source of all HIPAA in Essent, however he's been aware of several breaches (and not on this blog) that have quietly gone away.

Saw a memo sent out to all employees from Charles "Mr HIPAA" Fletcher that first congratulated employees on being mindful of HIPAA regs but then warned them that posting on blogs "even anonymously" was a violation of Essent policy and would be strictly enforced.

This was kind of a hold-over from Christus. They had two policies that chapped: You couldn't discuss anything of a detrimental nature outside the hospital, and actions of employees that brought discredit to the hospital, even if on their own time, were grounds for dismissal.

Recently, while wating to check out at WalMart, in response to my "how are you?" a complete stranger told me all about her recent surgery, the complications and the care she received at PRMC. As well as a similar surgery and complications her aunt had. For many people a surgery or even just a hospital stay is a life event and newsworthy. They tell everyone about it.

So how can Fletch be so sure that an anonymous post about a patient's experiences at PRMC are from an employee? The answer is he can't. It's just another excuse for a witch hunt. Already people have been fired from allegedly having something to do with this blog. Oh, wait. For going in a different direction from the hospital. Just another way to get rid of 'necessary terrorists'!
And there are whistle-blower statutes in place to protect those revealing actual situations that are criminal or dangerous. We use 'medical ethics' to justify non-disclosure of medical malfeasance. How can the truth be a violation when it corrects a dangerous situation?

I find it rather alarming that Essent's logo is very much like Enron's. Didn't that start with the CEO stealing the employee's pensions??
And lastly:

I hear another layoff is coming soon.
Please, dear Lord, let the rumor about ETMC be true!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Received an interesting comment last night. You be the judge.

I overheard a conversation that wasn't for public consumption. The gist was that ETMC was currently engaged in talks to acquire PRMC.

I don't know how far it's gone, but it sounded serious.

The suprise is how long it took them to get to that point. Funny that ETMC could end up with a monopoly in Paris, so long after the original sale to Essent.

Maybe at a reduced price....

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Caught In The Headlights....2/22

You might remember when Hud left...(for those who don't, he was the CEO of Essent) and some of the rhetoric that was used when he was ousted. Possibly you might have missed a statement that was issued by David Jarrard, an Essent spokesperson to the Nashville Post:

According to Jarrard, discussions of a possible sale have been tabled for the time being noting that “every Essent hospital is profitable and growing in their markets."
If you note the timeframe, that was in November of 2007--exactly the period that is displayed on the American Hospital Directory's site right now, showing the losses of what, $5 Million? So much for Essent's veraciousness.

If we take that, and Essent's backing out of the retirement match, you might have some serious doubts about the present and future health of Essent as a viable entity. And how can you trust what they say?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

An Issue of Trust....2/20

I have to say, not telling staff that there wouldn't be matching funds for their retirement was a stroke of genius. It must have saved millions...okay, hundreds of thousands. And it shored things up for this year, while keeping the contribution level higher.

And it showed that Essent is still in charge, under whom backdating has become an artform.

What the heck, already contributed? Tough. So what if you lost 40% of your investment last year. Essent had its fingers crossed when they made that promise.
They could have mentioned this year before last, when they lost--what, $5 Million? If there was that much of a difference, I can't wait to see the results for '08.

Wonder if Browder took the 10% management cut, or the matching funds cut....

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Where Ever You Go, That's Where You Are....2/15

From the comments:

Essent has an advantage: Being smaller, they can modify and change direction as needed, without overcoming inertia.

Essent also has a disadvantage: Lack of inertia. They're like a momentium invester who changes direction as the market does. One day he's going to zig when he should've zagged.

A larger corporation has more commitment to a course of action. That's where staying the course comes from. Essent's been changing direction--more likely chasing its tail--for the entire time they've been in Paris, and more so since Hud left.

Say what you will, he had a vision. Not ours, but it was a guide, a rudder. Now Essent is rudderless, and Browder just hasn't got it.

Think about all the changes, reversals, and reversals of the reversals. It has no internal compass. They won't know where they are when they get there.

Note: The title came from a second one.