Tunisia will get a taste of Olympics’ NHS salute
Outliers was, to borrow a Britishism, gobsmacked to find that a showpiece segment of the opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games celebrated … healthcare. Dancing nurses and doctors, children bouncing on beds. All in tribute to the National Health Service. During the segment, the beds, fitted with LED lighting, were moved to spell out “NHS” and “GOSH,” for Great Ormand Street Hospital, a children’s hospital that’s the beneficiary of royalties from J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan.
Now it turns out some of the props used in that segment aren’t going to waste. The 320 beds that director Danny Boyle used in a dance sequence showing British nurses tending to sick children will be used in real hospitals in Tunisia.
Organizers said the beds’ elaborate lighting effects and wiring were being removed by volunteers before they were to be loaded into shipping containers and sent overseas. The beds are being sent to the Hospital Habis Burguiba De Medenine and the Hospital de Taouine in Tunisia.
Of course, not everyone enjoyed the show. The Guardian reports that Tory MP Aidan Burley tweeted “The most leftie opening ceremony I have ever seen—more than Beijing, the capital of a communist state! Welfare tribute next?”
No word on if the Democratic or GOP conventions later this summer will feature similar spectaculars celebrating the U.S. healthcare system.
Healthcare’s strict gift limits
And while we’re talking about the Olympics, could hospitals’ bans on accepting and giving gifts be responsible for lackluster sales of corporate hospitality suites for the London games?
Well, maybe. A survey finds that the spendy luxury seats may run afoul of many companies’ policies against gift giving, though Outliers has to wonder if the sluggish global economy and the sloppy English weather might also have contributed.
In any event, the Health Care Compliance Association and the Soci-
The view from the podium
And to round out our Olympics theme this week, it appears one VA employee has a new award: a bronze medal.
Natalie Dell, a health research scientist working at the Veterans Affairs Department’s Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, Mass., won a bronze medal in the women’s quadruple sculls on Aug. 1.
Dell, 27, a native of Clearville, Pa., who now resides in Silver Spring, Md., has a bachelor’s degree from Penn State University, where she began her rowing career on the collegiate club level, according to a biography provided by the VA. She continued to row while earning a master’s degree in public health from Boston University. Upon graduation, Dell was invit- ed to train with the U.S. rowing training center in Princeton, N.J., which the VA accommodated by allowing her to work remotely.
Dell’s work is in mental health research within the Centers for Health Quality, Outcomes and Economic Research, according to the VA statement. So maybe while she’s in London, she can focus some research on exactly what was up with that opening ceremony. Was it some sort of coded message or just a cry for help? Cheerio and all that! ety of Corporate Compliance and Ethics find in their new joint survey that more healthcare corporations have strict anti-gift policies compared with their peers in other industries.
On average, 22% of more than 500 company respondents had some type of restrictions on gifts such as meals and entertainment. About 28% of healthcare respondents reported a total ban on giving gifts, while only 10% of nonhealthcare companies did. And 38% of healthcare companies disallowed their workers giving gifts, while only 12% of nonhealthcare firms followed suit.
Other findings raised eyebrows, such as the 68% of all companies that explicitly banned strip clubs and adult entertainment. “Perhaps most remarkable,” the survey authors wrote, “1% reported that adult entertainment is explicitly permitted.”
Outliers would guess that the same 1% has also not banned Olympic spending.
Dancing doctors and nurses, children bouncing on beds, synchronized beds. Sounds like an Olympic competition to us.
Dell, far right, shares the honor with her teammates, from left Adrienne Martelli, Kara Kohler and Megan Kalmoe.