13 votes

Toorak doctor with coronavirus saw 70 patients before testing positive

42 comments

  1. [16]
    patience_limited
    Link
    Just as a footnote, a runny nose isn't a characteristic symptom exclusive to COVID-19. There's so much symptom overlap with seasonal colds, 'flu, and even allergies, that there's little to...

    Just as a footnote, a runny nose isn't a characteristic symptom exclusive to COVID-19. There's so much symptom overlap with seasonal colds, 'flu, and even allergies, that there's little to distinguish COVID-19 before the pneumonia settles in and worsens. Anecdotal accounts suggest that otherwise healthy people walk around feeling just a bit under the weather for one to five days, then start having higher fevers and breathing problems as viral replication exponentiates.

    At least half the clinical staff I've worked with will continue to show up even if they're ill in one way or another. One doc I knew came back to work within a week of leaving the ICU after open heart surgery. I can't count the number of times I've watched unmasked doctors and nurses cough, drip, or sneeze everywhere, including during 'flu epidemics. They'll wash their hands automatically, but most specialties don't maintain airborne infection control routines by rote.

    I've still got half a dozen purse-size bottles of hand sanitizer floating around my work bags from dealing with pediatric practices and hospitals where everyone was constantly fighting infections. [Any parents here will know that kids are incredibly efficient vectors for spreading human-compatible diseases around.]

    The tendency to show up regardless of personal adversity gets baked into doctors starting before medical school. The unhealthy ones usually can't even maintain the necessary grades and honors prior to application. In the programs, absences will put them too far behind academically. They're sent to internships and residencies where adequate sleep isn't permitted, let alone illness. They attend to specialist on-call schedules where there's literally no one else qualified to provide backup. It's drilled into them that people will die if they're not constantly available and in control of themselves. [This is also part of the reason physicians have such high drug addiction and suicide rates.]

    I don't think this culture is peculiar to the U.S. It may be difficult for people in other countries to conceive that highly trained, well-paid medical professionals are exploited workers, but they're thoroughly indoctrinated members of the cult of overwork. [UK Tilders, feel free to speak up - I know the NHS has its own problems in this regard.]

    It's also an epidemiological problem that healthcare workers are constantly exposed to sick people as an occupational hazard. Most healthcare workers tend to think of themselves as indestructible and immune to almost everything by the time they're well-established, not least because anyone who isn't is expected to silently change profession. [My circle of healthcare acquaintances includes a couple of people who got shunned after contracting chronic hepatitis infections and/or HIV.] Doctors and nurses can be very cruel to anyone who isn't picking up their share of the never-ending work. And let's not forget that most of them love what they do, both as a means of helping others, and as their primary source of identity.

    I'm not saying the doctor in this case acted responsibly, but it may be that his irresponsibility is as much a professional failing as a personal one.

    16 votes
    1. [7]
      ibis
      Link Parent
      I’ve just read that he actually caught the virus on a recent trip to the US. He did not fulfill the governments criteria for testing- he was following advice. He eventually tested himself against...

      I’ve just read that he actually caught the virus on a recent trip to the US. He did not fulfill the governments criteria for testing- he was following advice. He eventually tested himself against advice - yet MPs are publicly mocking him.

      I feel for the guy, I know I’d feel guilty taking time off work over a mild cold - especially if I was a GP and I’d just had time off for a holiday.

      Bit of a crazy coincidence, but he’s also the father of a relatively famous Aussie singer - Missy Higgins.

      I wonder how many people who aren’t doctors are running around with the virus but are unable to get tested because they don’t meet the criteria.

      13 votes
      1. [6]
        ibis
        Link Parent
        A bit of an update - medical professionals are rallying to support the doctor in question on Twitter: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23flabbergaslighting&src=trend_click ,...

        A bit of an update - medical professionals are rallying to support the doctor in question on Twitter: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23flabbergaslighting&src=trend_click , https://twitter.com/hashtag/IstandwithChrisHiggins?src=hashtag_click

        The hashtags #IstandwithChrisHiggins & #flabbergaslighting are trending atm, the second is a reference to the comments by the MP that the doctor's behaviour was 'flabbergasting'. They feel that the government is throwing front-line medical professionals under a bus, and are demanding an apology.

        9 votes
        1. [5]
          patience_limited
          Link Parent
          Looks like Dr. Higgins does deserve an apology. He went above and beyond published guidelines to do the right thing and get tested. Otherwise, no one would have known that he might have been...

          Looks like Dr. Higgins does deserve an apology. He went above and beyond published guidelines to do the right thing and get tested. Otherwise, no one would have known that he might have been infecting others.

          In the U.S., HIPAA laws would require an investigation into how the doctor's name was released in the first place. It sounds like there are also questions about resourcing of adequate protective gear, and telehealth options, that the pols are dodging.

          7 votes
          1. [3]
            ibis
            Link Parent
            Yep, it's pretty clear he did what any other medical professional would do, and what any other medical professional would advise, given current official advice. There's just no good way of...

            Yep, it's pretty clear he did what any other medical professional would do, and what any other medical professional would advise, given current official advice.

            There's just no good way of preventing this. If every medical professional stayed home the second they got a runny nose, there would be staff shortages - the last thing you want in a pandemic when staff is going to be short anyway.

            If you test every medical professional with a runny nose, you're going to run out of tests - which are reportedly already in short supply.

            I feel the frustration of medical professionals who feel like they are the ones being thrown under a bus for following advice and doing their best under these circumstances.

            The real story here is: why was the official advice wrong? Was it a freak chance that the Dr caught the disease in the USA, or is the risk level there being underestimated?

            5 votes
            1. patience_limited
              Link Parent
              In the U.S., I think the distribution of COVID-19 is definitely being underestimated. We've been short of reliable testing, and there's a good chance that the virus just doesn't become severe...

              In the U.S., I think the distribution of COVID-19 is definitely being underestimated. We've been short of reliable testing, and there's a good chance that the virus just doesn't become severe enough to raise suspicion in many of the infected people. It's still influenza season here; COVID-19 cases could be widespread among people who won't see a doctor until they're very ill. It's no exaggeration that many Americans avoid seeking care due to high costs.

              There's also strong evidence that COVID-19 is much more infectious than influenza, so ordinary precautions might not be sufficient. The wildfire spread around the globe suggests that blocking travelers from specific countries won't be effective.

              6 votes
            2. Algernon_Asimov
              Link Parent
              I'd rather not see a doctor who's contagious (with the cold or the flu or whatever), when I'm already sick.

              If every medical professional stayed home the second they got a runny nose, there would be staff shortages - the last thing you want in a pandemic when staff is going to be short anyway.

              I'd rather not see a doctor who's contagious (with the cold or the flu or whatever), when I'm already sick.

              1 vote
          2. Algernon_Asimov
            Link Parent
            This isn't just about COVID-19. What if he had influenza or the common cold? Would it have still been okay for him to attend the clinic, see patients, and infect people?

            Otherwise, no one would have known that he might have been infecting others.

            This isn't just about COVID-19. What if he had influenza or the common cold? Would it have still been okay for him to attend the clinic, see patients, and infect people?

            1 vote
    2. DanBC
      Link Parent
      The NHS would collapse if people with colds didn't turn up to work. https://twitter.com/wendyburn/status/1236280147256528896?s=20

      but they're thoroughly indoctrinated members of the cult of overwork. [UK Tilders, feel free to speak up - I know the NHS has its own problems in this regard

      The NHS would collapse if people with colds didn't turn up to work. https://twitter.com/wendyburn/status/1236280147256528896?s=20

      6 votes
    3. [6]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      So he was sick with something else! I assume he would have known by age 70 if he was susceptible to allergies. Anything else - cold, flu, whatever - still counts as an illness. He didn't have to...

      Just as a footnote, a runny nose isn't a characteristic symptom exclusive to COVID-19. There's so much symptom overlap with seasonal colds, 'flu, and even allergies,

      So he was sick with something else! I assume he would have known by age 70 if he was susceptible to allergies. Anything else - cold, flu, whatever - still counts as an illness. He didn't have to assume it was COVID-19 to figure out he was probably infected with something.

      but it may be that his irresponsibility is as much a professional failing as a personal one.

      In that case, we need to stop telling doctors they're indestructible and indispensable. While they might think they can help people if they turn up to work, they need to understand they can cause more harm than good if they turn up while they're contagious.

      4 votes
      1. [5]
        DanBC
        Link Parent
        He was following the public health advice of his region: he hadn't been to high risk areas, he did not need to self-isolate.

        He was following the public health advice of his region: he hadn't been to high risk areas, he did not need to self-isolate.

        9 votes
        1. [4]
          Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          He's a doctor who had some sort of infection. Even if there wasn't a pandemic happening, he should have considered not going to work. In most places I've worked, if anyone ever showed the...

          He's a doctor who had some sort of infection. Even if there wasn't a pandemic happening, he should have considered not going to work.

          In most places I've worked, if anyone ever showed the slightest sign of a sniffle, everyone else told them to stay home and not share their sickness. That happened long before COVID-19 came along. We're not medical professionals, and we know that isolation works to prevent the spread of disease.

          How a doctor thought he should turn up to work with an infection, and interact with patients who were probably already sick, is beyond most people's comprehension.

          1 vote
          1. [3]
            Diff
            Link Parent
            I'm glad you've mostly only had to deal with workplaces like that, but most workplaces, especially ones in the medical field, aren't like that.

            I'm glad you've mostly only had to deal with workplaces like that, but most workplaces, especially ones in the medical field, aren't like that.

            4 votes
            1. [2]
              Algernon_Asimov
              Link Parent
              Well, that needs to change. Doctors and other medical professionals need to stop working themselves to death. I've previously worked in fast food. I was told to stay home when I got sick. If a...

              Well, that needs to change. Doctors and other medical professionals need to stop working themselves to death.

              I've previously worked in fast food. I was told to stay home when I got sick. If a fast food place that's just out to make a cheap buck knows the risk of a sick person infecting their customers, I'd expect a medical clinic that's supposed to help people get well to also be aware of this.

              4 votes
              1. Diff
                Link Parent
                I agree, they should stop working themselves to death at once. Not only would it save their sanity, it'd also prevent instances like this. Unfortunately that's easier said than done, and it's a...

                I agree, they should stop working themselves to death at once. Not only would it save their sanity, it'd also prevent instances like this. Unfortunately that's easier said than done, and it's a pre-req for preventing this kinda deal. No use judging the person for a systemic problem is all I'm trying to get across.

                3 votes
    4. cwagner
      Link Parent
      Yeah, it’s pretty much the same in Germany. Maybe slightly less extreme, but not by a lot.

      I don't think this culture is peculiar to the U.S. It may be difficult for people in other countries to conceive that highly trained, well-paid medical professionals are exploited workers, but they're thoroughly indoctrinated members of the cult of overwork.

      Yeah, it’s pretty much the same in Germany. Maybe slightly less extreme, but not by a lot.

      1 vote
  2. Algernon_Asimov
    Link
    Last week, it was a beautician on the Gold Coast. This week, it's a doctor in Melbourne. A doctor who should have known better. He's extremely irresponsible for turning up to work at a general...

    Last week, it was a beautician on the Gold Coast. This week, it's a doctor in Melbourne.

    A doctor who should have known better. He's extremely irresponsible for turning up to work at a general practitioners' clinic with symptoms. It's not like he was asymptomatic and couldn't have known. He had a runny nose even before he arrived back home in Australia. He should have self-isolated.

    3 votes
  3. [18]
    vakieh
    Link
    70 year old doctor. Means he went to medical school what, 50 years ago? This and other stories that come out would suggest we need re-licensing and life-long education with teeth for positions...

    70 year old doctor. Means he went to medical school what, 50 years ago? This and other stories that come out would suggest we need re-licensing and life-long education with teeth for positions like that. The CPD requirements are so game-able it is a joke.

    1 vote
    1. [2]
      DanBC
      Link Parent
      He was following the advice for his region. He did not need to self-isolate.

      He was following the advice for his region. He did not need to self-isolate.

      6 votes
      1. vakieh
        Link Parent
        He did not need to self-isolate with no symptoms - he did however have symptoms, which is an entirely different situation.

        He did not need to self-isolate with no symptoms - he did however have symptoms, which is an entirely different situation.

        1 vote
    2. [15]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      I'm pretty sure that, even 50 years ago, doctors were taught that a runny nose was a symptom of infection. If a patient presented to this doctor with a runny nose, he would have known the patient...

      I'm pretty sure that, even 50 years ago, doctors were taught that a runny nose was a symptom of infection. If a patient presented to this doctor with a runny nose, he would have known the patient was sick. Information like that doesn't exactly get out of date or obsolete.

      What's lacking here is not education or regulation, but common sense.

      2 votes
      1. [14]
        vakieh
        Link Parent
        I'm not saying that what was taught was out of date (it was, but that's its own issue), I'm saying there are other issues with the time gap - forgotten training, mental deficiency due to age, the...

        I'm not saying that what was taught was out of date (it was, but that's its own issue), I'm saying there are other issues with the time gap - forgotten training, mental deficiency due to age, the "she'll be right" Australian attitude.

        1 vote
        1. [13]
          Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          The correlation between "runny nose" and "infection" is not something a doctor learns once and then never uses. This is something a doctor, particularly a GP, would encounter on a weekly, if not...

          forgotten training,

          The correlation between "runny nose" and "infection" is not something a doctor learns once and then never uses. This is something a doctor, particularly a GP, would encounter on a weekly, if not daily, basis.

          mental deficiency due to age,

          I think most septuagenarians, even those without medical training, could self-diagnose an infection (of some kind) when they get a runny nose.

          the "she'll be right" Australian attitude.

          I think it's more likely to be the hero complex that @patience_limited describes.

          1 vote
          1. [12]
            Keegan
            Link Parent
            "70 year olds", for those wondering. You always find a way to make me open a new tab to search haha. The issue is is it worth not coming to work when you have (or think you have) a cold. The man...

            septuagenarians

            "70 year olds", for those wondering. You always find a way to make me open a new tab to search haha.


            could self-diagnose an infection (of some kind) when they get a runny nose

            The issue is is it worth not coming to work when you have (or think you have) a cold. The man probably figured it wasn't too big a deal, since plenty of people go to work with colds. I think it says something about work culture in capitalist countries.

            2 votes
            1. [2]
              Loire
              Link Parent
              Honestly if I was expected to stay home every time I got a cold I might as well be unemployed for October through March. There are less days that my nose is dry than running over the later half of...

              Honestly if I was expected to stay home every time I got a cold I might as well be unemployed for October through March. There are less days that my nose is dry than running over the later half of the year.

              Work culture aside I can't just give up on life because of a cold. Perhaps now that we are going through a pandemic but when all you've been hearing about COVID-19 is how its killing people, you probably don't consider that your runny nose is a symptom that you have the same thing.

              5 votes
              1. DanBC
                Link Parent
                Yes. Look at the UK. We're testing people who've come back from high risk areas who show symptoms. Today we've tested 21,460 people, of which 21,254 were confirmed negative and 206 were confirmed...

                Yes. Look at the UK. We're testing people who've come back from high risk areas who show symptoms. Today we've tested 21,460 people, of which 21,254 were confirmed negative and 206 were confirmed as positive.

                https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public#number-of-cases

                He was travelling from a low risk area. He hadn't come into contact with confirmed cases. He was following the advice of his public health officials.

                7 votes
            2. [9]
              Algernon_Asimov
              Link Parent
              Australian media has been flooded with news about "the coronavirus pandemic" and the Great Toilet Paper Crisis of 2020 (caused by panic about the pandemic). He'd have to have been deaf and blind...

              The man probably figured it wasn't too big a deal, since plenty of people go to work with colds.

              Australian media has been flooded with news about "the coronavirus pandemic" and the Great Toilet Paper Crisis of 2020 (caused by panic about the pandemic). He'd have to have been deaf and blind and living under a rock not to know there's a new virus going around. And he's not just an ordinary person: he's a medical professional, who would be receiving official updates about this pandemic. For him to think he just has a cold shows a wilful ignorance of the world around him.

              re: "septuagenarians"

              "70 year olds", for those wondering

              Actually... it's "people in their 70s". Anyone aged from 70 to 79 is a septuagenarian.

              You always find a way to make me open a new tab to search haha.

              Happy to help!

              1 vote
              1. [8]
                Keegan
                Link Parent
                It is just not something you would expect in the moment. Who expects they will get that weird new disease when they've gotten a cold a bunch of times before? Hindsight bias is an applicable term...

                For him to think he just has a cold shows a wilful ignorance of the world around him.

                It is just not something you would expect in the moment. Who expects they will get that weird new disease when they've gotten a cold a bunch of times before? Hindsight bias is an applicable term here.


                Actually... it's "people in their 70s". Anyone aged from 70 to 79 is a septuagenarian.

                Oops that's what I meant. Did not come off right.

                5 votes
                1. [7]
                  Algernon_Asimov
                  Link Parent
                  In most places I've worked, if anyone ever showed the slightest sign of a sniffle, everyone else told them to stay home and not share their sickness. That happened long before COVID-19 came along....

                  It is just not something you would expect in the moment. Who expects they will get that weird new disease when they've gotten a cold a bunch of times before?

                  In most places I've worked, if anyone ever showed the slightest sign of a sniffle, everyone else told them to stay home and not share their sickness. That happened long before COVID-19 came along. We're not medical professionals, and we know that isolation works to prevent the spread of disease.

                  A doctor should know this as well, regardless of whether there's a pandemic happening.

                  2 votes
                  1. [2]
                    patience_limited
                    Link Parent
                    Understand, as I said, that healthcare workers aren't just thinking of themselves and their paychecks when they go into work sick. There often aren't others who can easily substitute for them,...

                    Understand, as I said, that healthcare workers aren't just thinking of themselves and their paychecks when they go into work sick. There often aren't others who can easily substitute for them, unlike in fast food or other lower-skilled jobs.

                    [As had been posted elsewhere, in the U.S. and most other low-wage nations, it's not universal to have paid time off for sickness, or any guarantee that your job will still be available if you're absent for any length of time. When I worked in a bakery cafe', one of my coworkers got Campylobacter food poisoning. She was specifically instructed not to work in food service for at least two weeks after recovery, but tried to come back to work immediately because she would get evicted and starve otherwise. Welcome to capitalism.]

                    6 votes
                    1. Algernon_Asimov
                      Link Parent
                      Dr Higgins (the doctor in this case) works at a GP clinic which has 8 general practitioners on staff. (GP clinics like this, with multiple doctors on staff, each seeing many patients across the...

                      There often aren't others who can easily substitute for them, unlike in fast food or other lower-skilled jobs.

                      Dr Higgins (the doctor in this case) works at a GP clinic which has 8 general practitioners on staff. (GP clinics like this, with multiple doctors on staff, each seeing many patients across the day, are very common across Australia.) If he takes a day off, his appointments can be either rescheduled for another time (in non-urgent cases) or distributed among his fellow GPs (in urgent cases). I've had this happen to me, when I make an appointment with a doctor who is then absent on the day.

                      He's not that indispensable.

                      As had been posted elsewhere, in the U.S. and most other low-wage nations

                      This doctor works in Australia, where sick leave is a legally enshrined right for all workers. Every employee in Australia is legally entitled to a minimum of 10 days' paid sick leave every year (pro-rated for part-time employees). It's one our 10 national employment standards, which "cannot be overridden by the terms of enterprise agreements or awards." Noone and nothing can take away those rights from any worker in Australia - not even the worker themself (they can't bargain away their sick leave in exchange for higher pay, for example).

                      So, if he wants to take a week off sick, he's legally entitled to (as long as he gets a medical certificate!). If his employer fires him for taking sick leave, he can take them to the Fair Work Commission, which will rule against the employer and require him to be reinstated.

                      2 votes
                  2. [4]
                    Keegan
                    Link Parent
                    Many people, including @Loire, would barely be able to work at all if they stayed home because of a sniffle. It is silly to say that people shouldn't work because of a sniffle, especially in a...

                    Many people, including @Loire, would barely be able to work at all if they stayed home because of a sniffle. It is silly to say that people shouldn't work because of a sniffle, especially in a field as busy as a doctor. I'm shocked your place of work gets any work done at all.

                    If you have to self-isolate properly that would mean not even going out to get groceries. Not to mention that a sniffle can also just be caused by cold weather.

                    3 votes
                    1. [3]
                      Algernon_Asimov
                      Link Parent
                      My point is that even the non-medical people I work with know the power of isolation in preventing the spread of disease. Humans have known this for centuries, if not millennia: if you stay away...

                      It is silly to say that people shouldn't work because of a sniffle,

                      My point is that even the non-medical people I work with know the power of isolation in preventing the spread of disease. Humans have known this for centuries, if not millennia: if you stay away from sick people (or if sick people stay away from you), you're less likely to get sick. I would expect a modern-educated doctor to understand this even better. I would also expect a doctor to be more conscious of the health risks involved in attending a workplace while infected. It's medical authorities who tell people to stay home from work when they're sick!

                      I'm shocked your place of work gets any work done at all.

                      It's not like everyone gets a sniffle every week. It's usually a few weeks per year, per person.

                      And that's what sick leave is for! These absences are built into a business's planning. Every business should know their employees are going to be absent from work for a certain amount of time per year, combining annual leave and sick leave and carer's leave and parental leave and whatever else. They can't expect every employee to work 40 hours every week, every week of the year. They should know their employees will be absent for between 4 and 8 weeks every year. Any business that doesn't budget for this, is shortsighted.

                      If you have to self-isolate properly that would mean not even going out to get groceries.

                      If an infected person walks past you in a supermarket, your risk of getting infected (with regard to something like a coronavirus) are so low as to be statistically insignificant - unless they happen to cough or sneeze directly onto you. If an infected person sits at the desk next to you for 8 hours per day, for 2 or 3 days in a row, coughing and sneezing the whole time, your risk of infection becomes statistically significant.

                      And a doctor is sitting in a closed consulting room with each patient for about 10-20 minutes. That's plenty long enough for them to infect the patient.

                      2 votes
                      1. [2]
                        Keegan
                        Link Parent
                        I really don't think anybody is going to change your mind on this no matter what is said or how valid the point is. All that can be said for my belief has already been stated very clearly.

                        I really don't think anybody is going to change your mind on this no matter what is said or how valid the point is. All that can be said for my belief has already been stated very clearly.

                        4 votes
                        1. Algernon_Asimov
                          Link Parent
                          Fine. Next time I have a sniffle, I'll come sit next to your desk while I work through my illness. :P

                          Fine. Next time I have a sniffle, I'll come sit next to your desk while I work through my illness. :P

  4. [5]
    Algernon_Asimov
    Link
    I'm surprised at the number of people defending this doctor's decision to work while he was sick. What if this was your doctor, and he was at risk of infecting you or your child or your elderly...

    I'm surprised at the number of people defending this doctor's decision to work while he was sick. What if this was your doctor, and he was at risk of infecting you or your child or your elderly parent? Would you still be so understanding if one of your family members got sick from this doctor?

    1 vote
    1. [4]
      Loire
      Link Parent
      If all he had was the sniffles? Ya probably. There's no way for him to have known. He was following the public health advice offered for his region. Until he got teated there was no reason for him...

      If all he had was the sniffles? Ya probably. There's no way for him to have known.

      He was following the public health advice offered for his region. Until he got teated there was no reason for him to stay home.

      7 votes
      1. [3]
        Algernon_Asimov
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        There's no way for him to have known he was sick when he had the sniffles? The sniffles is a primary symptom of lots of infections, ranging from the common cold to HIV. A runny nose is a side...

        There's no way for him to have known.

        There's no way for him to have known he was sick when he had the sniffles? The sniffles is a primary symptom of lots of infections, ranging from the common cold to HIV. A runny nose is a side effect of the body's immune system at work fighting off a viral infection. I'm not even a doctor and I know that. As a doctor, he should know that. (If he doesn't know that, he should stop practising immediately!)

        He didn't need to know he had the COVID-19 coronavirus in order to know that a runny nose meant he was infected with something, and also probably contagious.

        P.S. I bet if I turned up to his surgery with a runny nose, he'd give me a medical certificate and tell me to stay home from work for a couple of days. :)

        2 votes
        1. [2]
          Loire
          Link Parent
          Exactly, there's no way to know it was serious and not just the common cold. Unfortunately we will have to stop here because you don't seem to understand that the vast majority of people can't...

          The sniffles is a primary symptom of lots of infections, ranging from the common cold to HIV.

          Exactly, there's no way to know it was serious and not just the common cold. Unfortunately we will have to stop here because you don't seem to understand that the vast majority of people can't just stop their lives every time they get a runny nose.

          I know COVID-19 has got you scared. I understand that. Unfortunately railing against this doctor is not going to make it better. We are all going to get it in due time and society will have to continue on trucking. Sick doctors will still have to show up to thr hospital to take care of the critical cases, sick municipality workers will still have to keep the water sanitation plants running. The world isn't going to be able to grind to a halt when this hits mass population. I don't begrudge the doctor for following the guidelines and doing his job.

          9 votes
          1. Algernon_Asimov
            Link Parent
            Nope. You're barking up the wrong tree. This isn't fear or panic talking. I'm not stocking up on toilet paper, waiting for the world to end. I don't even care whether he had COVID-19 or some other...

            I know COVID-19 has got you scared. I understand that.

            Nope. You're barking up the wrong tree. This isn't fear or panic talking. I'm not stocking up on toilet paper, waiting for the world to end.

            I don't even care whether he had COVID-19 or some other infection.

            This is anger that a doctor knew he was sick (with anything), but turned up to work anyway and put his patients at risk. He knew he was going to be in close contact with lots of sick and vulnerable people all day at work. GPs see about 4-6 patients every hour in those clinics. (The more patients they see, the more consultation fees they can claim from Medicare.) Even if he just had a cold, he could still spread that cold to dozens of people every day that he worked.

            This is especially annoying because, as I've pointed out elsewhere, he works at a clinic with 7 other GPs on staff, and he's legally entitled to paid sick leave here in Australia. There was nothing stopping him from taking a couple of days off while his symptoms ran their course. There were other people to pick up the slack in his absence.

            3 votes
  5. Algernon_Asimov
    Link
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/morrison-government-set-to-stockpile-antibiotics-amid-global-shortage-fears-20200307-p547ua.html

    [Australia's deputy chief medical officer Paul Kelly] warned doctors to stay home from work if they had cold or flu symptoms, after a Melbourne doctor was diagnosed with the coronavirus after treating 70 patients, saying: "Don't soldier on."

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/morrison-government-set-to-stockpile-antibiotics-amid-global-shortage-fears-20200307-p547ua.html

  6. mrbig
    (edited )
    Link
    Well, I've been with the flu for the past week. The odds of having contracted COVID-19 are very slim. Still, I'm isolated. Not that it takes too much trouble, I already work from home. But still.

    Well, I've been with the flu for the past week. The odds of having contracted COVID-19 are very slim. Still, I'm isolated. Not that it takes too much trouble, I already work from home. But still.

    2 votes