Saturday, March 14, 2009

Buy some jazz, donate to breast cancer research

People are frequently coming up with unique ways to raise money and singer and songwriter Anders Holst is no different.

During the entire month of March, Holst will work to support a cause near and dear to his heart. All proceeds from the iTunes sales of his Billy Joel cover, “All About Soul,” between March 1st –31st will be donated to the Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G. Komen For The Cure ®.

For a direct link to purchase “All About Soul” on iTunes, please visit:

For more information on Anders Holst, please visit

Image: iTunes

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hearing impaired nurses - yes or no?

If you are in the hospital and your nurse is hearing impaired, would that bother you?  If the hearing impairment was mild? If the nurse was profoundly hearing impaired or deaf?

The issue of disabilities and nursing, particularly nurses who are deaf, was in the news in the United States not too long ago.  According to this article, Hearing-impaired nurse: court discusses disability discrimination issues, a profoundly deaf nurse was suspended and then fired after 3 and a half years of spotless records in caring for her patients.

An incident occurred when another staff member couldn't get hold of the nurse because she can't hear the telephone or overhead speakers. Apparently, the technician didn't have the equipment to use the nurse's special pager that the nurse carried.

After an investigation, the nurse was not considered to be negligent but she was re-evaluated. Her employers found that she had no problems with her nursing skills, but she failed to show up for an audiologist appointment to have her hearing tested. That's when she was suspended and then let go.

My question is, is there a limit? Is it reasonable to have a nurse who can't hear her patients and can't hear alarms?

Believe me, I am more than aware of discrimination against the disabled. I have a 34 year old brother with Down's syndrome who had a job he adored. He was working for a chain drug store and he did a wonderful job. The chain was sold to an even larger chain and the larger chain dumped my brother. When there were attempts to find other jobs for him, many people didn't want a "retard" working with them or for them. It took quite a while to find him a new job. Now he has had the same one for several years and he adores it again. He's not that hard to please! And he works very hard to please.

I've also worked with both physically disabled and/or deaf children. I know what types of challenges they face. But, I do have a bit of a problem with certain professions and certain disabilities. If I'm sick, I want my nurse to hear me, even if it's a slight moan. I want my nurse to hear me call out even if her back is turned. I want to feel safe and like someone is watching over me.

I'm not denying that someone who is hearing impaired can't do the work, the tasks, and use the thought processes involved. But hearing your patient, listening for specific sounds, tones of voice, nuances, they're all vital in communicating with the sick.

 I don't believe she should be fired for being deaf. But I do wonder what type of decisions were made to allow her go into this field to begin with.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Can't believe controversy over abortion for 9 year old rape victim

I absolutely can't believe what I'm reading. I'm stunned.

First of all, I am not "pro-abortion," I don't think many people are. I think what they are is "pro-choice as to whether you can have one or not," and that's completely different. I wish we lived in a world where abortion didn't exist and wasn't needed. But there are sometimes when you just have to let go of your own beliefs and have compassion for someone. I also am Catholic, although I do disagree with some of their teachings and doctrine. I am not anti-Catholic by any stretch of the imagination (just thought I'd put that out there lest someone accuse me of that after reading this post).

Child pregnant after rape

In Brazil, a 9-year-old girl was allegedly repeatedly raped by her step father since she was six years old, police believe. She ended up getting pregnant with not one baby, but two. A 9-year-old girl, 80 lbs, was pregnant with twins.

No-one knew she was pregnant until she started complaining of severe stomach pains. That's when it was discovered that she was already four months pregnant. The problem was though, that at her size, her uterus isn't big enough to hold one baby, let alone two. So, what would happen? Likely, she would have died, along with the babies.

Abortion performed

The decision was made to abort the babies, something that is illegal in Brazil unless a judge says it's ok. What is shocking is that the judges may ok abortion if the pregnancy is due to a rape or there are medical complications that would put the mother's life at risk. Here, in this case, we have both. And yet, the Church has excommunicated the doctors who performed the abortion and the mother of the child. The rapist? Oh, he's allowed to go to church. He's still in their good graces.

Should I repeat that? The stepfather is in jail, but he wasn't excommunicated. Oh, and by the way, according to this article, the stepfather is also suspected of sexually abusing the girl's handicapped 14-year-old sister. The girl wasn't excommunicated because you can't excommunicate a child.

The doctors

Thankfully, the doctors are being treated like heroes by many. I say thankfully, because if they were scorned, I'd be afraid they'd not make such a decision again. But what is disgusting me is not just the Church's reaction, but that of every day people.

The reaction

I read a woman's forum when I have time. There is one poster who spouts off Catholic teachings in such a black and white manner that she can't see that sometimes, there is no room for discussion or anything. She wrote that the girl should have carried the pregnancy to term and, if necessary, deliver the babies early, around 5 months, because she'd heard that babies that young can survive.

Excuse me? Yes, babies born at 5 months may survive, but when a set of twins is delivered that young, from a 9-year-old no less, that's hardly the ideal circumstances.

My heart aches for this girl. I wonder if she even knew she was pregnant.

This isn't a moral issue folks. It's a medical issue. The girl would likely have died. The twins would likely have died. At least with the abortion, one survived.

Monday, March 9, 2009

One of the oddest videos/ads I've seen in a long time

I'm not sure what to think about this. I sat down to figure out what I'm going to post on today. I figured I'd do some serious, down to earth stuff. But, of course, I got distracted and started checking links that people suggested and I was mesmerized (sort of) by this one:

The Amazing Toilet

I'm trying to figure out what the advertising team meeting was like when decided to try flushing down plastic letters and numbers, dog food, carrots, golf balls and more. Then, as I was watching it, all I kept thinking about was all the plastic they were sending into the sewer system.

Anyway, what the heck, I figured I'd share it with you. I never thought I'd spend a couple of minutes of my time watching a toilet flushing, but it's oddly fascinating.

Next post, we'll get back to real health stuff. Promise.


Cookie diet: Yesterday was day 3 of the cookie diet trial: I'd written that Friday's cookies (the "blueberry") were disgusting and I couldn't see myself continuing this test, but Saturday's cookies were banana and not bad at all. Yesterday's were raisin oatmeal, also not bad at all. Problem is, I've got several packages of blueberry that I just can't eat. I doubt I'll convince them to trade them, but maybe I'll give it a shot anyway. My Dr. Seigal free sample arrived but has been at the post office since Thursday, since I've not had time to pick them up.

I began on Friday at 162 lbs. Saturday's dinner was a bit of a loss because it was my brother-in-law's 60th birthday and yesterday's dinner was upside down too because we had a bit of a family emergency and there wasn't much time to prepare anything properly. So, yesterday I was 159 and this morning I am again too.