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    Cool Military's failures left recruit to die

    Military's failures left recruit to die

    August 19, 2003


    BY TAMARA AUDI AND DAVID ASHENFELTER
    FREE PRESS STAFF WRITERS




    Justin Haase wanted to be a Marine.

    But he died in boot camp at age 18. A Marine inquiry determined that drill instructors failed to get him prompt treatment as he fell critically ill and that medical workers botched his care.

    Now his mother is suing, tortured by the belief that something as simple as an antibiotic could have saved him.

    This is Justin Haase's story, the tale of a Michigan kid who signed up to serve and never got the chance.

    She heard it in his voice right away, the way a mother does when her child is sick. No matter that this child was 6 feet tall, 18 years old and training to be a Marine hundreds of miles away.

    "You sound awful," Renee Thurlow said over the phone to her son, Justin Haase, who was in boot camp at Parris Island, S.C.

    It was a week before Christmas 2001, the first time she'd talked to him since he left his Chesterfield Township home in late October.

    Some of his letters home had troubled her. He had said he wasn't getting enough food. The drill instructors were mean. Other recruits picked on him. Renee's husband, Scott, a career Air Force man, assured her those were normal boot camp complaints. Maybe her husband was right, she thought.

    As Justin talked, he said he was starting to like boot camp. He promised to get his cold, or whatever it was, checked.

    He did not tell her about headaches so severe that they made him cry. He did not tell her how exhausted he was. He did not tell her that he never received the antibiotics that all new arrivals to Parris Island were supposed to get to fight infections.

    It was the last time mother and son would speak.

    One week later, Justin Haase was dead.

    An internal military report detailing his final painful days reveals a startling series of medical mistakes, bad decisions, missed opportunities and neglect -- from the time he stepped off the bus at Parris Island to the moment he was pronounced brain dead from bacterial meningitis, with no family member by his side.

    Renee Thurlow's son might have lived, according to the military review, if medics had done something as simple as taking his temperature at a crucial point.

    The Judge Advocate General investigation, which is done for every military death, resulted in some policy changes on Parris Island and the transfer of Justin's drill instructors to other positions. But his mother and lawyers say the changes were minor.

    One drill instructor remains under investigation. But to Justin's family, it's not enough.

    Nearly two years after Justin's death, his mother is suing the Navy, two Marine sergeants, a Marine medic and a Navy doctor.

    His mother, an Erin Brockovich-style crusader who jokes about her bottle-blond hair and wears her dead son's dog tags around her neck, is taking on a 54-year-old U.S. Supreme Court ruling that basically says you can't hold the military responsible for the death or injury of active-duty service members.

    "That law has got to be changed," she said, sitting in the downtown Detroit office of her lawyers, LeRoy Wulfmeier III and Melissa Carr. "We don't want another family to go through this."

    Said Maj. Ken White, a Parris Island spokesman: "It's extremely tragic when we lose one of our own, especially a recruit. We conducted an extremely vigorous investigation. We left no stone unturned. We identified people who violated policy and we held them accountable for their actions. That's what the American people expect us to do, and that's what we did."

    The suit comes at a time when U.S. soldiers are being called on to serve in a growing number of dangerous roles across the globe, including the war on terror and the rebuilding of Iraq.

    Renee's husband, a master sergeant in the Michigan Air National Guard, is angry about Justin's death, but as Renee talked about the way the military mistreated Justin, he leaned over, gently patted her hand and said, "Marines, honey, the Marines. Not the military."

    A dream is followed
    Military life fascinated Justin even as a grade-schooler in Sacramento, Calif., where his family lived in the late 1980s. His father, Don Haase, and mother separated in 1989. When Scott Thurlow started dating Renee a few years later, he took Justin to an Air Force base near Sacramento. The skinny boy loved being there and would come home excited, telling his mom about the newest, biggest things he saw.

    After Renee and Scott married in 1994, the family moved to a condo in Chesterfield Township, only a few miles from Selfridge Air National Guard Base. Once a week, Justin got his hair cut short at a barbershop owned by Ken McCormick, an Army veteran whose business is popular among Selfridge men.

    "Justin just took it all in," McCormickrecalled of the atmosphere at the shop, where the men swapped stories and handed out advice to the lanky teen.

    By his senior year at Adlai Stevenson High School in Sterling Heights, Justin knew three things: He wanted to join the military, become a cop and marry his sweetheart, Nicole Schlaack.

    Justin decided on the Marine Corps. It offered the most intense training, which Justin thought would prepare him for a law-enforcement career.

    Justin enlisted in August 2001 and was set to depart for training in October. But when the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks happened, he sped to a Troy recruitment center and begged to be taken then and there. He was told to wait.

    "He wanted to go really bad," said Jon Lockwood, a friend who had worked with Justin at a tire store. "He was always talking about how he wanted to go to war and help the country."

    On his last night at home, Justin and his stepfather had a private talk in the kitchen.

    "The drill instructors are paid to yell at you," Scott remembered saying. "So just let it roll. Don't let anything get to you. You're there to become a Marine. They're there to make you a Marine."

    Justin nodded quietly.

    Boot camp begins
    "Hello. I'm here. I'm OK."

    Click.

    Before Renee knew what had happened, the line had gone dead. It was 2 a.m. Oct. 29, 2001. Other military mothers had warned her about this. New recruits only get a few seconds to tell their parents they've arrived at basic training.

    Like all recruits sent to Parris Island, Justin spent the first few days filling out paperwork, getting his head sheared and being issued his training gear.

    Unlike the other recruits, Justin missed out on the dose of antibiotics that recruits are supposed to getupon arrival to ward off infections. It was standard operating procedure -- and the first mistake in a chain of errors that led to his death.

    Justin was allergic to penicillin and should have received an alternative. Justin told his girlfriend in a letter that he never did; the Marine investigation found no evidence to the contrary.

    During the inquiry, military doctors said the initial antibiotic treatment would not have been adequate to fight bacterial meningitis. But his mother and her lawyers say Justin would likely not have fallen ill in the first place -- and become susceptible to bacterial meningitis -- if he had been treated when he arrived.

    Justin's first weeks on Parris Island were difficult. He wasn't keeping up, records show, and his drill instructors rode him to move faster and push harder. One instructor poured water on his food to make a point; another assigned him to watch the rifles while other recruits ate.

    "I hate it hear, I'm so hungry," he wrote to his mom in a letter stamped Nov. 10. "All they do is yell, brake our stuff and stick us in a sand box with sand fleas that bite."

    Justin's health fades
    Life began to improve for him on the rifle range, where he made sharpshooter category, and he began to make the transformation into a solid Marine, according to the military review. But his health was deteriorating.

    In a Dec. 8 letter to his girlfriend, he complained that a headache prevented him from sleeping the night before.

    "For some reason my head started to hurt really bad and then it moved to my forehead and my face and eye, jaw, and throught," he wrote. "They all hurt so bad my nose got so stuffy and runny and it's still like that.

    "I was up all night going crazy then today my SDI said he'd give me medicine cause he saw me crying but he never did," Justin wrote, referring to his senior drill instructor. "I don't know whats wrong but it's sucks."

    It appears not even Justin realized how sick he was getting. Later in the letter, he wrote about the future: "Yesterday during our march it was dark when we started and we walked past base housing and I thought of us cause all these houses had Christmas lights up and I started day dreaming of me and you putting up lights on our house, then we went to pinarra bread . . . Honey all I want to do is marry you so we can live together. It would be so cute wouldn't it?"

    Justin did not complain about illness to anyone at Parris Island, according to the military records. But recruits are encouraged by drill instructors and by the Marine Corps culture to work through pain. Complaints, in that atmosphere, can be taken as whining.

    continued........

    IN LOVING MEMORY OF MY LATE HUSBAND, SSgt Roger A. Alfano, USMC
    ONE PROUD MARINE
    1961-1977
    Vietnam 1968/69
    Once a Marine...Always a Marine

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1204617174

  2. #2
    At 6:30 a.m. Dec. 22, Justin's platoon marched one mile to a training course. He ran the course, climbed ropes and worked on parallel bars. But afterward, "he complained to those around him that he had a headache," according to the military investigation. He also vomited.

    At the next obstacle that morning, he began to cry. Drill Instructor Dwayne Hardwick asked what was wrong. It was unusual for him to cry; recruits would later say he was not a whiner.

    Hardwick took Justin to a military field medic who did not check his breathing, his pulse or temperature, the records show.And though the medic had a two-way radio link to a base trauma unit, the medic didn't contact a doctor.

    Instead, the medic sent Justin to sit in a heated van while the platoon finished training. For two hours, he sat and cried from the pain. His medical records would later show that doctors believed the fatal illness had set in.

    Final hours
    The next 24 hours were crucial to Justin's survival, the records said.

    For the next seven hours, Justin followed orders to stay in bed. Meanwhile, the disease festered in the lining of his spinal cord and brain and began to invade his blood, medical records show.

    By the time he woke that evening, he could barely keep his eyes open and was incoherent.

    Hardwick, who was characterized in the investigative report as reluctant to seek emergency help, sent Justin back to bed and called the senior drill instructor, Sgt. William Bilenski.

    Just after 8 p.m., Bilenski called 911 and said Justin had taken a "spill" on the obstacle course.

    He was sent to Beaufort Naval Hospital, near the island, but was delirious. He moaned and growled. His left eye was fixed; his right eye roved.

    While the doctor on call struggled to figure out what was wrong, Justin's family had no idea he was in the hospital.

    The doctorinitially focused on a possible head injury -- a delay that cost valuable time, the report said. The doctor took a rectal temperature after noticing that the veins in Justin's temples were pounding. The reading showed a high fever, 102 degrees.

    The doctor then suspected a bacterial infection. Justin needed his spinal fluid checked immediately andantibiotics right away. Yet, according to the military report, the doctor "took none of these actions."

    Around 11 p.m. -- more than two hours after he arrived -- Justin was turned over to another doctor, Lt. Cmdr. Lloyd Weddington, an on-call internist who ordered a lumbar puncture to withdraw spinal fluid for a test. Healthy people have clear fluid. Justin's was the consistency and color of skim milk.

    The infection had taken over.

    At 11:30, Justin received his first antibiotic treatment.

    At 1:55 a.m., hewas taken to Beaufort Memorial Hospital for a brainscan. Standard care for meningitis patients includes five methods to reduce or preempt brain swelling. None of those methods -- including simply elevating his head to a 30-degree angle -- was used, the records show.

    He was moved again at 2:25 a.m. This time he returned to Beaufort Naval, where he was admitted to a special care unit. Anthony Gomez, a registered nurse, later told investigators that he was uncomfortable treating Justin because of his condition. He asked that Justin be moved to a facility with a neurological staff, but Weddington said it was unnecessary, the reportsaid.

    Justin spent the next several hours thrashing in bed. Weddington told the nurse to put him in restraints.

    The next time the nurse checked on Justin, at 5:30 a.m., his pupils were fixed and dilated. He had suffered severe brain trauma.

    His family still had no idea that Justin was so sick.

    Around 7 a.m., as doctors prepared to fly him to Savannah MemorialHospital in Georgia, the phone finally rang at his family's home in Michigan. It had been more than 10 hours since Justin was first taken to a hospital.

    'I can't do this'
    Renee wondered who could be calling so early.

    It was someone from a hospital, explaining that Justin was ill. She was not alarmed at first, but then heard the words "very grim."

    She recalled little else of the next few hours, except that they were frantic. She and her daughter, Danielle, booked the last two seats on a flight to Savannah. Her husband, Scott, and Justin's girlfriend, Nicole, began driving south. Justin's father in California tried desperately to fly out as well, but could not. It was two days before Christmas. Don Haase called the hospital all night for updates.

    In the air, Renee begged God to take her instead of her son.

    When they landed in Charlotte, N.C., to change planes, Renee was paged to call Don.

    Danielle felt her stomach drop. She walked to a phone and called her father. He was silent. She said, "No, no, no."

    He said, "Baby, he's gone."

    Justin was pronounced brain dead at 3:16 on the afternoon of Dec. 23. Renee insisted that Justin be put on a respirator.

    After an agonizing flight delay, Renee finally arrived at the hospital near midnight.

    Her son looked beautiful to her. For a second, she thought he was alive. He was tanned. When she touched him, he was warm. But thick needles jutted from his head, and hoses extended from his nose and mouth. Dark blood oozed out of his ears.

    Renee laid her head on his chest. She stroked his face and kissed his forehead. She told him she loved him.

    Danielle sat on the other side of the bed, holding her brother's hand, thinking of the little boy who had gripped her hand when they made the scary flight connection in Minneapolis each summer to visit their father in California.

    "Justin, please help me through this," she said, crying over his chest. "I can't do this."

    Military and hospital personnel asked Renee whether she wanted an autopsy. In shock and unsure what to do, she looked to them for guidance. She said they told her an autopsy would be pointless and that it would delay the release of his body. She declined.

    In the early hours of Christmas Eve, after Scott and Nicole arrived, Justin was unhooked from the respirator.

    The search for answers
    Justin was buried on New Year's Eve 2001. More than 400 people attended the full military ceremony, including recruiters from Michigan. A few days later, a one-page letter arrived to the Thurlow house. It was from Parris Island. It was unsigned.
    "What happened to your son," the letter said, "was a freak accident that could have been prevented." The letter said the senior drill instructor hadtold all the recruits what to tell investigators "so he won't get in trouble."

    Renee paced the house. She called her husband at work. They would spend the next few months fighting for details of Justin's death, demanding the investigative report. The Marines put up obstacles at each turn, she said.

    Justin's father, Don Haase, takes a different view. Though angry and grieving over his son's death, he finds it difficult to blame the Marines.

    "Clearly things could have been done differently," Don said. "At any point, they could have done something to save him and maybe the outcome would have been different. But at what point in time was it too late?"

    He cried, paused, then said, "I'm not going to spend the rest of my life searching for those answers. It just won't change the outcome."

    Renee may spend her life searching for those answers. A Marine life insurance policy paid the family the standard recruit death benefit of $250,000. Last September, the family filed a claim for more with the Department of the Navy -- which includes the Marine Corps -- but like most claims, it was rejected. In July, Renee sued in U.S. District Court in Detroit.

    "It's not about money," Renee said. "It's about stopping this before it ever happens again."

    A Marinespokesman said changes in procedure were made on the Island after Justin's death. Field medics now must always consult a doctor by two-way radio when recruits are sick or injured. Drill instructors now receive special training on the warning signs of infectious disease.

    The doctor criticized by the JAG report for waiting hours to give Justin antibiotics crucial to his survival is still working at the Naval hospital. And the doctor who refused to move Justin to a neurological care unit has finished his military duty at the hospital and moved on to practice elsewhere. A hospital spokeswoman said she did not know where that doctor now practices.

    The field medic faulted for sending Justin to bed instead of to a doctor received counseling, White said. The drill instructor who delayed in calling 911 received a "nonjudicial punishment," White said, which could range from counseling to a fine, or demotion in rank. He is no longer a drill instructor.

    The senior drill instructor who Justin said never gave him medicine when he asked for it is under investigation. The investigation was hampered, White said, because the instructor was transferred to Iraq and is now serving in the Persian Gulf.

    A sister's grief
    After Justin's death, his sister, Danielle, left Michigan for California to get away from the memories. But she is coming home this month to live in Justin's old bedroom. She worries that she will forget his voice, or the lines of his face. At times, she has a vivid dream of him.

    In it, she is in a crowded city, calling his name. Suddenly, she looks up and he's there, with a big smile and bright eyes. "Here I am," he says. She hugs him. They laugh and walk around for hours. "Stayhere," she says. "I'm going to get Mom. I'll be right back."

    But when she returns, he is gone.




    Contact TAMARA AUDI at 313-222-6582 or audi@freepress.com. Contact DAVID ASHENFELTER at 313-223-4490 or ashenfelter@freepress.com.

    http://www.freep.com/news/locmac/marine19_20030819.htm

    Sempers,

    Roger


    IN LOVING MEMORY OF MY LATE HUSBAND, SSgt Roger A. Alfano, USMC
    ONE PROUD MARINE
    1961-1977
    Vietnam 1968/69
    Once a Marine...Always a Marine

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1204617174

  3. #3
    Now that suck medical workers botched his care something should be did ASAP


  4. #4
    firstsgtmike
    Guest Free Member
    1. I don't remember receiving anti-biotics in boot camp, 45 years ago. But, times change, and memory fades.

    2. The first missed opportunity was when he left his house to get on the bus to MCRD.

    3. The law which says you can't hold the military responsible for the death or injury of active-duty service members should NOT be changed. If changed there would be a court investigation anytime anyone is killed in combat. (55,000 cases pending from Vietnam)

    4. "It appears not even Justin realized how sick he was getting." (Nor did anyone else.)

    5. "Hardwick took Justin to a military field medic who did not check his breathing, his pulse or temperature." (THIS is where the screwup starts.)

    6. "For two hours, he sat and cried from the pain." (and continues)

    7. The corpsman perscribed bedrest. " that evening, he could barely keep his eyes open and was incoherent. Hardwick, sent Justin back to bed and called the senior drill instructor." (A CYA response when initiative was reqired.)

    8. "the doctor on call struggled to figure out what was wrong." (THIS was the make or break point.)

    9. "Justin's family had no idea he was in the hospital."(A red herring. No reason for family notification.)

    10. "Standard care for meningitis patients" was NOT used. (Another screwup.)

    11. The RN's recommendation that he "be moved to a facility with a neurological staff" was ignored by the MD in charge and he was placed in restraints. (THIS screwup is INEXCUSEABLE)

    12. "they told her an autopsy would be pointless" (WRONG!)

    13. "What happened to your son," the letter said, "was a freak accident that could have been prevented." The letter said the senior drill instructor hadtold all the recruits what to tell investigators "so he won't get in trouble." (This CYA speaks for itself and recognizes guilt.)

    14. A Marine life insurance policy paid the family the standard recruit death benefit of $250,000, the family filed a claim for more." "It's not about money," (That's BS! The hearts and flowers are to justify more money. If the money had been refused, or merely accepted and a case filed to determine IF his death could have been prevented and steps taken to correct procedural errors, THEN he would not have died in vain.

    15. Of the two doctor's who could have/should have saved a life, one is still at the hospital, and the other completed his active duty and is practicing elsewhere. The Corpsman has been counseled, the JDI received NJP and is no longer on the drill field, while the SDI is still under investigation, temporarily postphoned due to his deployment to Iraq.

    Excluding the deceased, there were five main characters in this tragedy. If any one of them had taken a step in the right direction, a life would not have been wasted.


  5. #5
    Just for clarification this happened in 2001 as stated in the first post right? So why are we just now hearing about it?


  6. #6
    As usual "FirstSgtMike" is right on point.

    This is a tragic case but frankly, who among us does NOT know that "sh**t happens". The CYA in inexcusable, the medical response from the get go was poor to, perhaps, criminal.

    One thing that troubled me somewhat was an undercurrent of finger pointing at some of our "Corps Values" about sucking it up and trying to move through the pain. We all have done this at one point or another but it is not the reason this youngster so tragicly died.

    Again Kudo's to FS Mike to so effectively boiling this down to its salient issues.


  7. #7
    August 19, 2003

    Family sues over recruit’s meningitis death

    Associated Press


    DETROIT — Renee Thurlow knew her 18-year-old son was sick when she talked to him about two months after he left for boot camp at Parris Island, S.C.
    “You sound awful,” she told Justin Haase over the phone about a week before Christmas 2001.

    Haase promised to see a doctor, but didn’t mention how exhausted he was or the headaches that made him cry.

    One week later, he died of bacterial meningitis.

    Now, nearly two years after Haase’s death, his mother has filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Detroit against the Navy, two Marine sergeants, a Marine medical technician and a Navy doctor. The suit, filed last month, says an internal military report shows a series of medical mistakes hastened Haase’s death.

    The lawsuit challenges a 54-year-old U.S. Supreme Court ruling that essentially says the military cannot be held responsible for the death or injury of active duty service members.

    “That law has got to be changed,” Thurlow told the Detroit Free Press for a Tuesday story.

    Maj. Ken White, a Parris Island spokesman, said a thorough investigation was conducted.

    “We identified people who violated policy and we held them accountable for their actions,” White said.

    Thurlow and her lawyers hope to show that a neglectful chain of events began when Haase arrived at Parris Island.

    Haase missed the dose of antibiotics that recruits receive to ward off infections because he was allergic to penicillin. He should have received an alternative, but the Marines’ review found no evidence that he did.

    Military doctors argue that the initial treatment would not have fought bacterial meningitis. The lawsuit claims Haase likely would not have become susceptible if treated upon arrival.

    During a Dec. 22 training course that began at 6:30 a.m., Haase vomited and later began to cry.

    A drill instructor took Haase to a military field medic who did not check his breathing, his pulse or temperature, records show.

    Haase stayed in bed for most of the day. When he awoke that evening, he could barely keep his eyes open and was incoherent.

    Just after 8 p.m., a senior drill instructor called 911 and said Haase had “taken a spill” during the training course. He was sent to Beaufort Naval Hospital.

    A doctor initially focused on a possible head injury until a rectal temperature reading showed a 102-degree fever. A bacterial infection was suspected.

    But Haase’s spinal fluid was not checked for more than another two hours. Healthy people have clear fluid. Haase’s looked like skim milk.

    At 11:30 p.m., Justin received his first antibiotic treatment.

    At 1:55 a.m. on Dec. 23, he was taken for a brain scan. Care for meningitis patients includes five methods to reduce or pre-empt brain swelling. None of those methods was used, medical records show.

    Haase was again moved at 2:25 a.m. He spent the next several hours thrashing in bed and was put in restraints.

    A nurse found Haase with fixed and dilated pupils at 5:30 a.m. He had suffered severe brain trauma.

    Around 7 a.m. doctors prepared to fly him to Savannah Memorial Hospital in Georgia and called his family in Michigan.

    Haase was pronounced brain dead at 3:16 p.m. on Dec. 23.

    In early January, a one-page, unsigned letter from Parris Island arrived at the Thurlow house.

    “What happened to your son,” the letter said, “was a freak accident that could have been prevented.”

    Thurlow began her quest for answers.

    Haase’s father, Don Haase, though angry and grieving, said it is difficult to blame the Marines.

    “Clearly things could have been done differently,” Don Haase said. “At any point, they could have done something to save him and maybe the outcome would have been different.

    “But at what point in time was it too late?”

    Field medics at Parris Island now must consult a doctor by two-way radio when recruits are sick or injured. Drill instructors are educated about warning signs of infectious disease.

    But Thurlow, who wears Haase’s dog tags around her neck, says the lawsuit remains necessary.

    “It’s about stopping this before it ever happens again,” she said.






    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Copyright 2003 The Associated Press.


    Sempers,

    Roger


    IN LOVING MEMORY OF MY LATE HUSBAND, SSgt Roger A. Alfano, USMC
    ONE PROUD MARINE
    1961-1977
    Vietnam 1968/69
    Once a Marine...Always a Marine

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1204617174

  8. #8
    firstsgtmike
    Guest Free Member
    Plagerism!

    If you compare the first (Free Press) article and the 2nd (Associated Press) article you will see that the Free Press article was merely edited and condensed.

    Not one ounce of thought or effort went into the Associated Press story. Thanks to word processors, it didn't even have to be retyped.

    I wonder if I can get a job as an Associated Press "reporter" rewriting published articles?

    I've got some great ideas for the Decleration of Independence and the Constitution.


  9. #9
    Registered User Free Member mardet65's Avatar
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    [QUOTE]Originally posted by USMC-FO
    [B]As usual "FirstSgtMike" is right on point.

    I couldn't agree more with your comment or the First Sgt's analysis of this case. People love to "muddy the waters" then say it's not about the money. It's tragic! It shouldn't have happened! Those who were negligent should be held accountable! But lets judge the issue on the facts only.


  10. #10
    From the view point of being married to a nurse 29 years...Medical ethics come to mind...one doctor is still at the hospital...another finished his naval service and is practicing elsewhere.
    Medical ethics exclused naming these doctors...I think it's wrong.
    The public should know that these doctors made errors and a loss of life was the results of those errors.
    The Corpsman made a error in judgement.
    But it all started with him missing those anti-biotics at the beginning of boot camp.
    How did it come about?
    Then trying to cover it up...compounds those mistakes...ID the problem than correct it...is the way to go...

    Echoing mardet65
    quote
    I couldn't agree more with your comment or the First Sgt's analysis of this case. People love to "muddy the waters" then say it's not about the money. It's tragic! It shouldn't have happened! Those who were negligent should be held accountable! But lets judge the issue on the facts only.
    unquote

    Semper Fidelis
    Ricardo


  11. #11
    I stated medical ethics because once I saw some notes when she was studing to become a nurse...If a doctor is bad , they can't discuss it in public, because than they can be sued and fired for lack of medical ethics and destroying a doctor practice...that last word "practice" is funny in describing what a doctor does.

    Semper Fidelis
    Ricardo


  12. #12
    Military medicine has always been loaded with poor quality. On the other hand there have always been outstanding doctors as well. In my 21 years, I have some some doctors, nurses and corpsmen that were just too good to be true. Diligent, dedicated and very conscious of the quality of their care. Sometimes it was as simple as "Take two APCs" (for you younger Marines, that used to mean green and white "all purpose capsules") or as difficult as long hours trying to identify and correct the problem. Sadly, I have seen those that were just the opposite as well. Conscious only of their rank and the privileges that accompanied that rank and unwilling to provide any "off duty" time to their patients.
    All in all, I think the majority of the medical folks I saw were positive and caring and did an excellent job. Unfortunately it only takes one "bum" to give them all a bad reputation.
    As others have said, the Marine mystique is to suck it up and get on with the job. That is frequently neccessary but can lead to future problems if not monitored by each individual. That's why it's always good to get to know the "doc"; your "friendly neighborhood corpsman can sure help you keep things from getting out of control.


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