More firsthand symptoms of a broken healthcare system

About a year ago, I shared the story of Betty who at 75 was placed in harm's way by the healthcare system.

In brief: First, Betty had been overmedicated which led to too much potassium and resulted in cardiac symptoms. Second, she was not using her appropriately prescribed inhaler because she did not understand the instructions from her doctor. In addition, the provided handout had tiny, hard-to-read type; the parts of the handout that were readable were the adverse side effects, which only served to cause her anxiety.

Third, Betty's medication history was not accurate in the electronic health record (EHR). Fourth, her doctor did not believe her when she said the medication information in her record was indeed wrong. Fifth, the e-prescribing tool and process did not send the correct information to the pharmacy, which caused delays in acquiring the critical medication (as per her doctor) and further caused additional stress to the patient. 

This past week, my wife and I again were blessed with the opportunity to bring Betty to her doctors and once more witness firsthand symptoms of a broken healthcare system.


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