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Medical Whistleblower Advocacy Network

Human Rights Defenders

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

 Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 1

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PATIENT BILL OF RIGHTS

       1. Information Disclosure. Consumers have the right to receive accurate, easily understood information and some require assistance in making informed health care decisions about their health plans, professionals, and facilities.

       2. Choice of Providers and Plans. Consumers have the right to a choice of health care providers that is sufficient to ensure access to appropriate high-quality health care.

       3. Access to Emergency Services. Consumers have the right to access emergency health care services when and where the need arises. Health plans should provide payment when a consumer presents to an emergency department with acute symptoms of sufficient severity -- including severe pain -- such that a "prudent layperson" could reasonably expect the absence of medical attention to result in placing that consumer's health in serious jeopardy, serious impairment to bodily functions, or serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.

       4. Participation in Treatment Decisions. Consumers have the right and responsibility to fully participate in all decisions related to their health care. Consumers who are unable to fully participate in treatment decisions have the right to be represented by parents, guardians, family members, or other conservators.

       5. Respect and Nondiscrimination. Consumers have the right to considerate, respectful care from all members of the health care system at all times and under all circumstances. An environment of mutual respect is essential to maintain a quality health care system.

       6. Confidentiality of Health Information. Consumers have the right to communicate with health care providers in confidence and to have the confidentiality of their individually identifiable health care information protected. Consumers also have the right to review and copy their own medical records and request amendments to their records.

       7. Complaints and Appeals. All consumers have the right to a fair and efficient process for resolving differences with their health plans, health care providers, and the institutions that serve them, including a rigorous system of internal review and an independent system of external review.

       8. Consumer Responsibilities. In a health care system that protects consumers' rights, it is reasonable to expect and encourage consumers to assume reasonable responsibilities. Greater individual involvement by consumers in their care increases the likelihood of achieving the best outcomes and helps support a quality improvement, cost-conscious environment.

"On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux."

(You can see clearly only with your heart. What is truly important is invisible to the eyes)."

- Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Trauma And Post Traumatic Stress

Compassionate Care

Advice to Whistleblowers

 "Human beings, like plants grow in the soil of acceptance, not in the atmosphere of rejection.”   

John Powell, S.J.


Society has a tendency to blame the victim for not being able to simply being able to “get over it” and this cultural lack of support can be classified as secondary wounding and promotes re-victimization which treats the victim as defective or deficient.  During this secondary re-traumatization, the loss of Medical Whistleblower’s human potential is incalculable.  The first action necessary to enable a Whistleblower to find their own pathway to personal healing is to stop the continuing harassment and create safety and security for them both physically and emotionally. Our society views many objects as disposable and when an object is tarnished or dented the tendency is to deem its value gone, throw it away and rush to the stores to replace it.  When Medical Whistleblowers become targets of retaliation in an effort to silence them,  their value as highly competent and experienced professionals becomes forgotten in the rush to strip them of their professional credientals in order to discredit their allegations against the wrongdoers.  Telling the Truth to authorities often means permanent loss of the Medical Whistleblowers extensive professional skills and abilities and financial ruin for him/her and their family.  We must remember that human beings are not disposable objects and we must value the personal and professional characteristics of each whistleblower and remember that the growth potential available through the healing process is infinite.

“When someone is a victim, he or she should be at the center

of the criminal justice process, not on the

outside looking in”.

 President William J. Clinton

Rose Garden, June 25, 1996

Trauma Informed Support & Care


Our goal at Medical Whistleblower is to provide advocacy for Medical Whistle-blowers and to help stem the tide of secondary victimization by their care providers, friends, family and co-workers. We provide educational materials, newsletters on critical topics of interest and referrals to care professionals who are knowledgeable in trauma informed care.


“Even in states with a victims’ rights constitutional amendment,

 the overall protection of victims is varied and uneven.

In addition, without federal constitutional protection, victims’ rights

are always subject to being automatically trumped by defendants’ rights.”

Robert E. Preston, Co-chair,

National Victims’ Constitutional

Amendment Network

“Resolve to be tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant with the weak and the wrong. Sometime in your life you will have been all of these.”

 Dr. Robert H. Goddard quotes (American rocket engineer 1882-1945)

Principles of Trauma Informed Care

   


Problems and Symptoms are inter-related responses to the trauma of retaliation and represent coping mechanisms developed by the Medical Whistleblower in order to deal with their personal trauma.   It is critically important to empower the Whistleblower by providing choice, autonomy and control in their care support and networks. This is central to healing.   Primary goals are defined by Medical Whistleblowers themselves and focus on recovery, self-efficacy, and healing. Advocacy must be proactive – preventing further crisis & avoiding further re-traumatization.

"People are like stained glass windows,  they sparkle and shine when the sun is out; but when darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light within" 

Elizabeth Kübler-Ross

 

TRAUMA

INFORMED

TRADITIONAL APPROACHES

Problems/Symptoms are inter-related responses to or coping mechanisms to deal with trauma.

Problems/Symptoms

are discrete and separate

Providing choice, autonomy and control is central to healing.

People providing services are the experts, Trauma Survivors are broken & vulnerable.

Primary goals are defined by trauma survivors and focus on recovery, self-efficacy, and healing.

Primary goals are defined by service providers and focus on symptom reduction.

Proactive – Preventing further  crisis & avoiding retraumatization.

Active – services and symptoms are crisis driven and focused on minimizing liability.

"Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable... Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals."

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Celtic Woman - May it be

The Pathway from Vulnerability to Strength - 

Starting at the bottom and moving toward the top    

 

Celebration – Self Actualization

Overcoming Vulnerability – Recognition

     Compensation – Self Esteem Needs

Sharing with Others (Sense of Belonging)

     Exploring Protection Needs

          Identifying Safety Needs

               Denial of Vulnerability

                     Elimination of Danger

↑                         Vulnerable

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong.

1 Corinthians 16:13

 

"Don't let life discourage you, everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was."
--Richard L. Evans


Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.
--Anais Nin


"We must believe in ourselves or no one else will believe in us; we must match our aspirations with the competence, courage and determination to succeed."
--Rosalyn SussmanYalow


  Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius --- and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
--Albert Einstein

Exposure to Trauma & Substance Abuse

On December 5, 2001 the National Center of Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University published a study which had been initiated because of the 9/11 attack. A finding of this study concluded that: 

"Exposure to trauma puts a person at four to five times greater risk of substance abuse and stress is considered the leading cause of relapse to alcohol and drug abuse, and addiction and smoking."

The report clearly finds that if you expose a person to trauma,  then that person is 4 to 5 times more likely to abuse mind altering substances than a person who is not traumatized.  And the report further finds that if you place a person who is in recovery from substance abuse or alcohol abuse in a stressful situation,  then that stress will be the "leading" cause to make that  person return to a life of substance abuse.

Thus it is clear that eliminating the source of trauma is essential to prevent or decrease substance abuse.  Programs that use threat, intimidation, humiliation and abuse only increase the patient/clients use of addictive substances.  Many victims of abusive rehabilitation programs use mind altering substances to drown out the memories of abuse and trauma.  

Positive therapy can be based on personal skills, identifying those events that trigger traumatic memories, cognitive behavioral therapy and biofeedback control, can be very healing.  Preventing further re-traumatization is necessary to prevent the vicious downward cycle of abuse and addiction.

 

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
 
― Leo Buscaglia

Medical Whistleblower Advocacy Network

MEDICAL WHISTLEBLOWER ADVOCACY NETWORK

P.O. 42700 

Washington, DC 20015

MedicalWhistleblowers (at) gmail.com

CONTACT


"Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself."  Confucius

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

Theodore Roosevelt- Excerpt from the speech "Citizenship In A Republic", delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on 23 April, 1910