In hospitals, they are still obsessed with masks

My primary role of late has been to assist my elderly mother through any number of medical appointments.

In shuffling from one to the next, we sometimes have to remind each other to bring a mask.  We're aware that the masks offer no protection against COVID, but for the sake of others, we've complied with the mandates that are still enforced upon entrance to medical facilities.

The pretense strikes me, however, as masks are not magically effective in the lobby of a medical facility while they are ineffective everywhere else.  I'm sympathetic toward receptionists, and others in service roles, whose livelihood depends on their willingness to maintain the pretense of science-backed policy. 

But the facade came crashing down for me when I'd taken my mother to have a CT scan done.  We arrived at the facility duly masked.  For the purpose of the visit, my mother had followed the instructions to begin drinking a large amount of barium two hours before the scan.  She was to drink a final small portion once we were on site.

Upon our arrival, I found a chair for her in a corner of the spacious lobby.  There was one other person in the room, about 15 feet away.  When she lowered her mask to take another sip of the horrible drink, we were surprised by a receptionist who insisted that she keep her mask on or be moved to another room to finish the task.

I suggested that such measures were unnecessary, as nobody was anywhere near her.  This protest fell on deaf ears.  It may be that the receptionist was unhappy in having to live under such rules herself, so she was all too happy to force them upon others.

Beleaguered as we were, we complied, though not without further protest.

It doesn't surprise me that medical facilities are cautious about returning to normal, though this particular example of policy enforcement seemed absurd to me.  A little empathy would go a long way in such situations.  Pushy enforcement of nonsensical or outdated policies only erodes confidence in our medical establishment, as the enforcement has nothing to do with the current conclusions of science. 

I look forward to the day when we can drop such pretense and go about our lives as usual.  The tide can't turn soon enough, though I'll patiently wait to cast my vote for such changes this November.

Image: Pixabay, Pixabay License.

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