Paralysis by Urinalysis
If I fail a urine screen I am then discharged from treatment by my doctor. This has become an all-too-common practice at many .. practices. Isn’t this ridiculous? I mean, hypothetically, if I decided to go to an all night 70’s disco cocaine party and decided to partake (hypothetically) then I am in danger of losing the services of my orthopedic surgeon who is helping to mend my back after a near-paralyzing car accident? Ridiculous. A joint to help me sleep? Say goodbye to my recovery from spinal injury. Is there even a justification for this? I will play devil’s advocate and try to defend the indefensible here. Note: Any position that isn’t mine is indefensible.
We can’t be providing opioid medications to patients who are themselves drug users. There could be dangerous interactions and other irresponsible behavior that would cause them to harm themselves. They would need a doctor. They should be discharged from my (doctor) practice.
We have to test their urine frequently to be sure that we are not contributing to a patient’s drug problem or addiction issue for which they should be seeking professional help. They would definitely need to see a doctor if they had an addiction problem. These patients definitely should be discharged from my (doctor) practice.
By testing our patients’ urine, we can see who is a complicated patient so we can quickly discharge them from our practice, thus leaving us with the simple patients who quietly come and go, pay their bill on time, and allow us to pack in more patients (more money!) Complicated patients take up too much time and cost us too much money (not to mention effort). Money and effort should never be expended needlessly in our line of work. Just tell them we can lose our license (an incredible irony when you consider that by KEEPING them as patients and TREATING their destructive tendencies by way of referrals or their addiction we would be acting MORE like doctors and thus be MORE worthy of our licenses) and keep having them make the walk of shame from bathroom to waiting room holding their leaking urine vials. I became a doctor to get rich not to treat people who have unhealthy habits or dangerous behaviors. Those people should go get their heads examined. …by a doctor, I guess. I’m confused.
Doing drugs is unhealthy although often a lot of fun. If you choose to do something this stupid (awesome) then you should not be in danger of losing the services of a competent medical professional. It should be noted, however, that if your doctor discharges you for failing a urinalysis, subjecting you to both withdrawal and the care that you deserve due to an injury or illness, the maybe your medical professional isn’t so competent after all…