Thursday, August 4, 2011

MEDICAL MARIJUANA DARK AGES


Don’t you know that drinking, and using drugs and especially marijuana use, is a sin?  This sin has been particularly noticed since marijuana clinics are legal in Calaveras County.  And, since we live in a very moral county, with a very moral staff, some very moral doctors at Mark Twain St. Josephs Hospital will not provide you medical services unless you sign a Patient Responsibility Agreement that reads:  “Patient will not use any illegal controlled substances, including marijuana, etc. …and  if provider advises, patient will not use alcohol.”

Awww, maybe this is to protect them from lawsuits.  That is always the excuse given when an entity doesn’t want to deal with a problem.   Nope.  Several medical marijuana patients have been denied care at MTSJ  Hospital clinics unless they sign the agreement and agree to a list of conditions in order to receive or continue treatment already started.  And, it doesn’t matter if you hold a card as a contracted Medical Marijuana Patient.

Tom Liberty of Mountain Ranch,  a Collective Patient Resources counselor  said: “I could not believe that any doctor would let people stay in pain, and I did not believe any hospital would implement such a legally risky policy.”

To make things even more interesting,  while some doctors working at MTSJ’s clinics are recommending that their patients use medical marijuana, others are refusing to provide care for patients if they do use it.  This is very much aimed at marijuana.   Drug abusers and alcoholics have been routinely treated at MTSJ.  

MTSJ’s Dr. Rosada not only refused  Sam Slayter, of Valley Springs, treatment for his pain because he was a medical marijuana user, he refused to help him find a primary care physician.  He was told no Mark Twain doctor will treat marijuana users.

David Jack had surgery on a brain tumor in 1999 and has received care from MTSJ  for the 30 years that he’s lived in Calaveras County.  Medical marijuana allows him to avoid taking powerful opiates for pain, helps him keep his balance and staves off trigeminal neuralgia (a searing stabbing or electric-shock-like pain in parts of the face). A migraine was causing Jack horrible pain July 8, and he was concerned that his tumor had caused something serious to go wrong, so he called to make an appointment with Jacobson, his primary care physician. He was told he could not see Dr. Jacobson. He ended up having to go to Sutter Amador Hospital two days later to receive treatment. His blood pressure was  220/110 and he was diagnosed with a thrombotic stroke from which he still is not fully recovered.
“I was really shocked. I felt like I’d been really betrayed,” Jack said. “I watch this tumor slowly growing again. I was in pain. I need to get in to see my doctor to see what’s going on, and I was denied.”
Others have signed the statement to get relief.

Public Health Officer, Dean Kelaita pointed to the card program that has been instituted in Calaveras County, according to state guidelines,  that he feels helps distinguishes between medical marijuana users and recreational users. “The law says that there is appropriate medical use for marijuana. I think that our ID card program helps sort that out.”
MM users sign contracts with their  prescribing physicians. Contracts are common and  there is no problem with them. The contract is for a legal substance, recommended by a doctor.

Is this bizarre or what?  Back to the dark ages for Calaveras County.

(This information was excerpted from Joel Metzger’s piece  from the Calaveras Enterprise.  There were several more examples of pain meds denied on the spot, for ear infection and other maladies that came through Urgent Care Clinics.)

“Away, away, with rum by gum,
with rum by bum, with rum by gum,
away, away, with rum by gum,
the song of the Temperance Union.”

“We’re coming, we’re coming, our brave little band
On the right side of temperance, we do take our stand.
We don’ use tobacco because we do think
That people who use it are likely to drink.”

“We never eat fruit cake because it has rum
And one little bite turns a man to a bum
Now, can you imagine a sorrier sight
than a man eating fruit cake until he gets tight?”

“We never eat cookies because they have yeast
And one little bite turns a man to a beast
Now,  can you imagine a sadder disgrace
than a man in the gutter with crumbs on his face?”

“Away, away, with rum by bum,
with rum by gum, with rum by gum,
away, away with rum by gum
the song of the Temperance Union.”

Author unknown.

2 comments:

Velas Kesakes said...

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Mary Matzek said...

I hadn't read or thought about that piece for a long time. Since then, seven doctors left Mark Twain St. Josephs Hospital (MTSJ) en-masse as a protest to their policies and have moved to a different hospital. I say Yea!