Marketing and other random thoughts

September 2nd, 2007 by Nick Jacobs Leave a reply »

Quote from Imelda Marcos: “Doesn’t the fight for survival also justify swindle and theft? In self defense, anything goes.”

Quote from Nick Jacobs: "Gosh, I hope not!"

So much of what we are experiencing everyday feels a little uncomfortable . . .

This is not a political blog.  It is not intended to be.  It is intended, however, to encourage you to explore the real vs. the perceived.  It is intended to point out things that have been bothering me for quite some time as a human being

Windber is a Planetree facility.  That means that we embrace the concept of body, mind and spirit; the demystification of healthcare; the concept of not leaving your dignity at the door.  We call it WindbercareTM. Some of our competitors would have you believe that whatever they say they do creates a special center for healing.  We say: come here, then go somewhere else, and feel the difference.

We have a multiple slice PET/CT scanner.  If you’re a lay person, that probably means almost nothing to you.  It’s technical. a PET scanner is one diagnostic machine, and a CAT scanner is another piece of diagnostic  equipment. Combined, they become an extremely powerful tool.  As an FYI, a multiple-slice CT scanner is not the same tool as a PET/CT.  At least for now, Windber Medical Center is the only PET/CT available for many miles around.

How about a three-Tesla MRI?  What is that?  It is a magnet for an MRI that is twice as powerful as any magnet in this area.  Twice as powerful. Here numbers really do count.  So who cares?  Anyone who needs an MRI scan should care.  It is twice as dynamic as a 1.5 T magnet, the standard magnet available in this area.  Brain scans and breast scans are phenomenal on this piece of equipment.  In fact, we have brain surgeons from Pittsburgh and physicians from Johns Hopkins in Maryland who send their patients to Windber.  The University of Pittsburgh has two magnets like this, West Virginia University has one… and the only other one in this part of the country is here in Windber.

Ge_openmri On that same note, what is an open MRI?  It is a piece of equipment that has been developed for people who are anxious, obese or who want an examination of small parts of the body.  The major difference for the patient is that there is no tunnel, the device does not surround the patient being tested. By comparison, even a large bore MRI is NOT open.  To my knowledge, the closest open MRI in this area is in Indiana, PA.

Our infection rate at Windber Medical Center is less than 1%. Try that on for size. If you come to Windber for surgery, there is better than a 99% chance that you won’t get a hospital borne infection. Ask our competitors what their infection rates are. Then make a decision. Your life could depend on it.

Finally, the physician who says to you, "We can only do this surgery at ANOTHER hospital because they are the only ones with the equipment necessary for me to do this work," often times is not telling you, the patient, the entire truth.  There are only a small percentage of procedures that cannot be done at Windber Medical Center.  As is the case in most hospitals, if need be, the factory representatives will actually bring equipment directly to us for specific specialty surgeries, but most of the time when we track back that physician excuse, we find out that all of the equipment was already here. 

The real excuse is "If I don’t do a certain number of surgeries at a competitive hospital, I will no longer have a block of time for my other surgeries. It is a use it or lose it philosophy imposed upon them by larger facilities. Consequently, the physician says, "I’ll tell you that they don’t have the proper equipment," and what he doesn’t say is, "I’ll do that in order to preserve my block elsewhere."

The little secret seems to be… "In self defense, anything goes.”  So, ask, and don’t always assume that the answer is not just better for your health. Because, sometimes, it’s just better for their business.

Okay, I feel a little better now that you know.

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3 comments

  1. Robert S Hedin says:

    If the only physician prevarication was that which you describe, we’d be relatively safe. In fact, were the public to ever find out how frequently they are misled by the health care industry, doctors would be seen as worse than used car salesmen. The first clue: how about a quarter of a million deaths annually from medical mistakes? Here’s another: do pharmaceutical companies continue marketing drugs they know are unsafe? This could go on and on as the evidence is overwhelming. Sure surgeons steer patients to profit centers. What’s even more astounding is how often surgeons recommend the OR at all; that is until you realize they only way they earn is by cutting.

    Kudos on your extraordinarily low infection rate.

  2. Pintoo Rath says:

    Its easy to criticize larger facilities..Doesn’t Windber impose any similar ‘block of time’ usage for its affiliated physicians??

    Congratulations on the low infection rate!!!

  3. Complimenti blog molto interessante

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