Friday, March 06, 2009

Perspective Testing - Who Killed John Doe?

Read this scenario then follow the directions at the bottom. We did this as an exercise in class (on coming to a group consensus), but it seems to me that it also offers a glimpse into how people view their world.
Who Killed John Doe?

Read the information below and then complete the sentence at the end.

John Doe, age 54, was dead on arrival. His wife drove him to the Emergency Room at 2 a.m., but even before she pulled into the driveway, his tortured breathing had stopped. Successive attempts by the hospital staff to revive him failed.

John’s doctor said he was sorry. He could not make house calls, because there is a shortage of doctors, and he is putting in an 80-hour week as it is. Besides, Mrs. Doe had called at 1 a.m. on Christmas morning. The doctor told her to rush John to the hospital.

The hospital administrator was sorry. When the patient had asked to be admitted earlier that morning, his condition was not acute. The patient had used up his insurance benefits for the year and had no other resources. The hospital had exhausted its charitable reserve funds and was required to limit admissions to paying patients or those whose conditions required acute and emergency care.

The caseworker from the Department of Health and Social Services was sorry. She had explained to the patient that the State health program would cover him only after he had incurred one hundred dollars in medical bills. If he entered the hospital before incurring that amount in medical bills, the entire hospital stay would be disallowed for coverage by her office by law.

The legislators who made the law said they were sorry. They had to balance the state’s budget at a time when highway costs and educational expenses were going up. Originally the bill to establish health benefits would have cost the taxpayers an estimated eighty million dollars a year. By strategic amendments, such as the one that discouraged John Doe’s admission, they saved the taxpayers three-fourths of the cost of the original bill—nearly $6 million.

The people who elected the lawmakers were sorry. They had not wanted their taxes raised, so they voted for the candidates who promised to contain expenses and reduce waste in government spending. When a few political leaders announced that taxes would have to be increased to continue human services, the voters wrote letters and sent telegrams to their representatives protesting such tax increases.

Mrs. Doe was sorry. She was sorry that her husband died on Christmas morning, and she was also sorry that they had not saved more for their old age or joined the more expensive comprehensive insurance plan offered by the union. She especially regretted: (You complete the sentence)
________________________________________________
(Charles A. Hart, University Associates, Annual for Facilitators, Trainers, and Consultants)
OK, so that was the easy part. Now, considering what you have read, rank the following list from most responsible (1) to least responsible. Post your answers in the comments (copy and paste) and we'll discuss the decisions you make. There is no right or wrong, so please be as honest as possible.

__ Caseworker
__ Hospital Administrator
__ John's Doctor
__ John Doe
__ John's wife
__ Legislator
__ People who elected the lawmaker


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