I remember in the long long ago, when I first started my career in Chiropractic, the financial windfall generator known as the “California workers compensation program” which reimbursed medical professionals, and Chiropractors, quite lucratively.
Not to get into the minutiae of the cascading compensation, but each patient visit could collect $100. Multiply that by 3Xs a week, 4 weeks a month etc.
This set up lead to an obvious fiscal problem endemic to Americas 3rd party payer healthcare system, with economic success judged not by successfully healing patients but by how many work comp patients you could get through the door and how long you could keep them, getting them “better” took a back seat to keeping them coming.
Now insurance companies don’t like paying for services rendered at all, let alone into perpetuity, so they would ask for frequent updates on the patients condition to decide whether there was a medical necessity to continue. This lead to a billing tango where medical providers had to dance the fine line between “they still need continuing care” and “I swear this is working and is a miracle.”
If you were wondering why people were still coming in twice a week two years after the initial onset of the condition patients learned the great line that bridged the gap:
“The pain is still there but God knows where I would be without this treatment.”
It was with this statement that we as medical providers could justify continuing care: Yes, improvement had been slow BUT there is some vague, unknowable, untestable, unverifiable condition that this poor patient would suffer from without the past 327 visits.
If you were wondering how long this hustle benefitted us an Austrian Actor/Governator, a huge Chiropractic fan himself, signed legislation limiting Chiropractors to only 24 visits per claim.
This appeal to the unknown, rejected long ago, I heard for the first time in a long time coming from the proponents of the COVID-19 vaccine today.
Vaccine proponents claim that past Vaccines are the pinnacle of scientific endeavor, humanity conquering disease and eradication of specific viruses and pathogens from the face of planet 3. Skeptics of mass vaccinations say those claims are embellished, that many of the diseases “eradicated” by vaccines, polio and measles as examples, were burning out through the population already and vaccines got there a day late and a dollar short while taking all the credit.
From the very beginning of Ronamania, before masks, before lockdowns and bar closures, the vaccine hunt was a huge controversy,: Epidemiologists boldly predicted success within 18-36 months and “anti-vaxxers” proclaiming “I ain’t taking that shit.”
Then there’s me, not reflexively “anti-vaxx” but mucho skeptical of Pharmaceutical companies claims that I certainly don’t give them a free pass on Vaccines.
From the very beginning I noticed the sides lining up and I made a prediction to friends:
I told people that the vast majority of the people would take the vaccine, possibly myself included. Not because they fear death most, though that is a part of it, but because they fear not going back “to normal”, or more to the point not going back to their perception of their own freedoms of choice.
In that vein I stated that people would tolerate side effects of the vaccines, a few bells palsy’s here and there and a smattering of suspicious deaths blamed on anything but the vaccine. What we could never tolerate is Failure. Because if the vaccine “doesn’t work”, we can’t go back “to normal”, the highest god which currently exists.
I wondered what the Vaccine manufactures would whip up, I don’t doubt that the science exists to do what they claim they do, just that they’ve spent so much money buying politicians and medical boards and media coverage that they couldn’t concoct a cocktail as effortlessly as they can craft a narrative.
And that brings us to today, the vaccine is out. What say “the scientists”?
It’s not going to eradicate the disease, or slow spread. It’s just going to make cases “less severe”, when you get it. This is as nebulous sounding as “yes my back pain for the past two years Is only slightly better but WHO KNOWS how much worse it would be without this treatment.”
Which is, after all, the point. Claiming victory without demonstrating success.
As dangerous as Covid 19 is, especially to more vulnerable populations, it is still a disease where most walk around with mild or no symptoms and greater than 97% of people in all risks groups survive. By what metric do we measure success if they are using a metric, (“we swear that virus you’re going to get is not as bad as it would be”), that was rejected by the medical establishment almost two decades ago?
If we were just keeping people locked up waiting for the vaccine, and the vaccine makes it “less shitty then it would have been”, and not eradication, then shouldn’t we have just told people to eat better and exercise in the sun? I mean a stronger immune system also makes rona cases less severe.
But there is no money in that unfortunately.
I still have hope that one way or another this disease gets eradicated, and I would more than welcome a pharmacological solution. But forgive my early skepticism, it looks like the PR departments are taking the victory lap long before R&D got their lab coats ruffled as the vaccine manufacturers, telling us to have faith that the unknowable awful for the quantifiable shitty is just what the doctors ordered…