Saturday, February 17, 2007

Why don't they make guest point cards for hospitals?

Many families measure milestones in traditional manners - birthdays, anniversaries, holidays. My family still does this but we've acquired a new tradition - that of measuring milestones by health crises. I came across this nugget by accident the other day. I couldn't remember when I'd worked in L.A. with one of my girlfriends (I was giving her a job reference - and yes, despite my unprofessionalism, she did get the job) and I yelled out to my Mother, "Hey Mom, what year did you have breast cancer? 1998?" Dad had open heart bypass surgery in 2004 - when my niece graduated from high school; my niece was diagnosed with her blood disorder in 2002 - the year she celebrated her 16th see what I mean?

New Year's 2006 - me in a coma. So, here's my question - why don't hospitals offer guest point cards for families like mine? I mean, we would prefer not to "visit" the hospitals as much as we do, really. But since we're there as much as we are, shouldn't we earn points? There would have to be strict guidelines, of course. Not everyone would qualify. Just like regular rewards cards you'd need a certain amount of points before even reaching a starting status, which I've dubbed appropriately, "Saline" - the card would be clear. You'd need a few basic outpatient procedures, doctor visits, eat in the cafeteria for at least 5 meals (this is non-negotiable, everyone must eat hospital food to qualify). The next level would be "Morphine" - the card would be one of those cards that catches the light and changes color. Same as Saline with an Inpatient stay of 3 days. The highest card, "Transfusion" would be blood red, almost black. Same as Saline and Morphine with multiple stays but you can jump ahead if you have families like mine. What do you get for being a card holder besides the status ? Upgraded to private rooms, brand name medicines - no generics, home phone numbers of your doctors (only if you're a Transfusion card holder). I'm still in the planning stages of this idea but I think this might be a whole new niche market for the patient care industry.


At 4:53 PM , Blogger Buttercup2489 said...

Excellent idea!


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