Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Bureaucracy Spreads Ebola

The reports of what was happening at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas by the nurse's union highlight the dangers of the bureaucratic mindset. The bureaucratic mindset is that of egalitarian (green) psychology. Which means that nobody was making a decision, because nobody wanted to be held responsible for what might happen. I promise you that while Duncan was surrounded by other patients, there was a nice, long, pointless meeting taking place to decide what ought to be done.

Nice, long, pointless meetings is the main feature of egalitarian social interactions. The meetings are found in our schools, in our governments, in our corporations, and in our hospitals. In our schools, they only waste teachers' time and make teachers' jobs impossible and work to ensure our students get the worst education possible. In our governments, they only waste tax money and ensure nothing gets done until and unless everyone is on board (including the corporations attending). In our corporations, they only waste time and money and make businesses less efficient and their products more expensive.

But when this happens in our health care system, illness spreads and people die.

And that is what we are seeing here in Dallas. The disastrous bureaucratic mindset will actually kill people when it comes to health care. It is one thing for it to interfere with things like preventative care or seeing patients who later, quietly, die. It is quite another for it to cause an epidemic.

Had there been someone in that hospital who took responsibility for what was going on, Duncan would probably still be alive, and the two people who contracted Ebola would have likely never done so. Instead, when one person did in fact try to take responsibility, "A nursing supervisor faced resistance from hospital authorities when the supervisor demanded that Duncan be moved to an isolation unit."

The issue is that the majority egalitarian psychologies in charge at the hospital see those who express responsibility as morally inferior and, therefore, someone it is okay to ignore. The facts of the matter don't matter, only that the right person with the right attitude is making the suggestion. But in a psychological level that rejects responsibility (because it is the level immediately below that level) and opts rather for collective guilt, the recommendations of someone preaching responsibility are specifically going to be ignored.

The nursing supervisor was not speaking the right language to the hospital authorities. That is why Duncan died, and that is why two more people have Ebola here in Dallas.
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