Tuesday, September 13, 2005
September 13: Red Cross, Red Tape
Our FDNY friends, however, have located a group called HOPE that's affiliated with the Red Cross. They have a bunch of Humvee's (privately owned) and--provided someone high up in the Red Cross here in Biloxi/Gulfport requests them--will be made available to take medical teams and supplies into hard-hit, hard-to-reach areas. Sounds like just the ticket for our medical team, right?
Except--as I learned a full battery charge of my cell phone later--the Red Cross doesn't do medical work. Huh? Yupp. They give first aid at Red Cross stations, but are NOT ALLOWED to provide 'medical' or 'nursing' care because of liability issues. So after umpteen phone calls to and from Red Cross folks, we seemed to have arrived at a dead end.
EXCEPT that we managed to find a sympathetic ear, in the form of Marty Mulcahey, a Red Cross leader here who is actually out of Illinois. He promised us he is going to try to get this going. If it works, we'll be out tomorrow. This process is frustrating, but educational.
The government is not the only big organization with red tape.
By the way: I heard from a doctor at the d'Iberville clinic (above) that his group of volunteer physicians from Georgia is now doing nothing, because they were told the previous order by Governor Barbour which protected licensed physicians working on hurricane relief from liability has been rescinded--apparently at the behest of the MS Dept of Public Health. They now want MD's to have to register with them and go where they are told. Well, I can tell them where they can put that idea.
Linked to Mudville Gazette.
May I include a post from "Dr. Goodheart" in the next Carnival of Hurricane Relief? If you get a chance, see:
"Kicking Over My Traces"
"Carnival of Hurricane Relief"