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Beware - Hospitals May Be Hazardous to Your Health

Updated on June 21, 2019
ValKaras profile image

Val is a life-long practically oriented student of effective emotional and attitudinal responses to the many challenges of life.

You are in good hands
You are in good hands

A Healthy Aversion

Let me be perfectly honest with you -- I am writing this article while hoping that the information presented may help you with motivating your immune system to keep you away from hospitals. You may not be willing to believe it, but once that we have developed enough of an aversion to doctors, and especially hospitals, it may give that extra boost to our overall health.

I haven't seen a doctor in the last 12 years or more, and haven't taken a single dose of any medication whatsoever. Other than doing my best mentally and physically to keep myself fit at this age of 74, I can shamelessly admit that I "hate" the medical profession with a passion. O.K., don't take this "hate" literally, but don't take it as a joke either.

Hospital closed
Hospital closed

Healthy when They Had To Be

Of course, my aversion to doctors is not to suggest that you start self-medicating and otherwise avoiding medical treatments -- but it merely serves as an example of how our bodies tend to keep us healthy when they get a message that they are expected to do all of that healing.

Many years back I read this story about a small town in which the only hospital had to be closed "till further notice" to outpatients for either some technical reason, or was it the case of a quarantine -- I don't remember exactly.

Anyhow, as the story goes, for the whole duration of the hospital's closure, no one in the town needed any of its services. For some mysterious reason, everyone, even those hypochondriacs and old folks stopped complaining about their health. But then, as soon as it reopened -- I could let you finish the sentence.

"I hope he is immune to my mistakes"
"I hope he is immune to my mistakes"

Your Mind Can Keep You Well

So now you know my motivation for writing this article. If it contains certain scary material, don't take it for some exaggerations. Of course, there are differences in the way that different hospitals do their business, and nothing of the following is generalizing. It's only to warn you to be watchful for any of the details mentioned here.

My sincere hope is that you get just enough uncomfortable about visiting those places as a patient, so that your immune system gets the message to shift into a high gear. Mind is a tremendously powerful machine, and it can keep us well, not only by positive attitude, good rest and nutrition, but also by being motivated against placing our health in hands of medical practitioners.

Just Humans in a Business

The very first thing we have to be warned about is that uncomfortable fact that all medical personnel consists of fallible human beings. It seems to be this human factor that's mostly responsible for those dark statistics about "doctors being the third major cause of fatalities in the US alone."

As a rule, they are overworked, and then there is always that question of their competence. Just like there are good and bad auto mechanics, there are good and bad doctors. As if that wouldn't be enough of a risk, every hospital is in the first place a business establishment.

During my last -- short and only in my entire life-- overnight stay in one of those unpleasant places, I had a chance to observe the administrator walking from one bed to another and checking the charts to make sure that no patient is "overusing the hospitality" (no pun intended).

Don't Be a Part of Statistics

When you hear the expression "mistaken identity", you probably think of those crime stories where someone is arrested or even killed because they were mistaken for someone else. Well, laying down in that bed may not exactly look like an arrest, but it may potentially be fatal, if someone else at the same ward shares your last name.

So, you know what to do. At the price of not being the favorite patient around, feel free to disturb that deep peace of your attending nurse by insisting to know if anyone else in that immediate neighborhood has your last name. If you don't ask, the chances are that you may be given a wrong medication, or a wrong dosage, or at a wrong time. Then you just might join all those dark statistics mentioned up there.

Any anatomical surplus?
Any anatomical surplus?

Cut Here, Doc -- Not There

Well, are you scared as yet? No? O.K., let me regroup and try some other tactics. You see, not only that there is a possibility of you getting a wrong medication, but you may be operated on a wrong part of your body. You may also be operated on if you were not due for any operations at all. It has been done, it's not hypothetical.

Imagine, you are a young woman and due for a gall bladder surgery, and instead they do the hysterectomy, and bingo -- no kids for you, lady, only those from adoption. Please, don't think I am kidding about it just because I am trying to use a light language to convey to you some bad possible outcomes of your stay in a hospital.

Do you know that some folks actually use an erasable marker and make a circle on the part of the body to be operated, with a smiling face and a message to the good doctor : "Cut here"? Well, once they are heavily sedated it will be too late to remind the doctor with scalpel in hand.

Infection Hospital-Style

There is one in five chances in an average hospital that you may attract some kind of an infection just by stepping in there, let alone staying overnight.. As a matter of fact, there are hardly places where you are as likely to get one other than in a hospital, because of all that exposure to airborne and other germs.

When I say "other", I mean everything that you may touch there is a likely source of it. Doctors and nurses are far from being in a habit of washing their hands between touching all those patients.

Nurses are also handling those full urinals, and taking away those wet towels used by patients to wipe their private parts. So, chances are that you may take home from a hospital more than you came for -- some bugs.

Unclean Tools

Wait, I am not done with the issue of hospital's hygiene. Think of all those instruments that are used there. Don't kid yourself that they get regularly cleaned or god-forbid disinfected. You know what I mean---those stethoscopes, otoscopes, (for checking your ears), thermometers, cuffs for blood pressure, infusion pumps, and urinary catheters -- to name only those that I happen to know, never mind all the other scary gadgets and tools in their tool-box.

So, at least do your part, wash your own hands as frequently as you can, don't touch your mouth too much, and when you have visitors, tell them to wash their hands before leaving the hospital, and in the meantime not to touch their mouth either. If you can emotionally afford it, also tell them not to kiss you either.

Was it red...or black...or white?
Was it red...or black...or white?

In a Recap

One detail is worth repeating -- make sure you know the name of your medication, dosages, and times of administration. Take a risk of being secretly called a "paranoid jerk", but check with your nurse about your medications every time she brings them to you.

Explain your concerns in a nice way, and she will understand. Take a defensive attitude when exposed to that environment, it's your life in question. Keep in mind that to all that personnel you are just a routine case, not one that will make them use some "extra focusing and care".

No matter how much they smile -- it's a part of their "job requirements", like airplane attendants' or politicians', to smile -- they are only professionals, not your "guardian angels", and while being only human, they are bound to make mistakes. Don't turn into one if you can avoid it.

Why not just be healthy instead?
Why not just be healthy instead?

Maybe Safe - but Maybe an Accident Waiting to Happen

A good number of you have probably spent some time in a hospital, and according to your personal experience all this may sound like unnecessary concern, perhaps even bordering with paranoia.

I understand, except that statistics have their own story to tell which may not sound like the one of your particular hospital experience. Like I said at the start, I hope my article succeeded to plant a little extra caution into your mind -- regardless of how safe your hospital happened to be.

But above all, I hope that it gave a little motivational kick to your immune system to keep you well, so that you don't need visiting such places. Again, hospitals certainly save many lives, but due to human and other factors mentioned here -- they also may turn out to be hazardous to your health.


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    • rebelogilbert profile image

      Gilbert Arevalo 

      2 years ago from Hacienda Heights, California

      I agree with you that people need to take care of themselves. It's the healthiest option by far. I enjoy visiting the doctor's office and hospital little as possible myself.

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Laurel - Thank you for commenting. Doesn't it make you wonder, what ever happened with the professional ethics in these areas where it matters so much that it could make a difference between life and death? Big Pharma and medical profession are mostly about the business these days, and they don't even have to worry about "losing customers", because sickness is so much a part of life. Unfortunately so, because we could all take a better care of ourselves, not having to resort to their services. At least not as much as we do.

    • lollyj lm profile image

      Laurel Johnson 

      3 years ago from Washington KS

      Hospital care is nothing like what it was when I was a young nurse. Your hub is excellent and I agree with you, based on my decades of experience in health care.

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Wild Bill - I am really glad that you got those main points of my hub so correctly. Val

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Linda - I am happy that you found the hub informative and interesting. Hospitals are an absolute necessity in any society (except maybe in Shangri-La where everyone is happy all the time - LOL). But yes, there are a few points of great concern, and we should all put much more faith in our body's ability to heal itself and assist it in a wise way. Just look at the fact that the nature made it necessary for us to sleep every night - so that our body can renew and heal itself, with our busy and mostly negative minds "stepping out of their way". We can learn so much truth by just observing the simple biological facts. Then we gain some healing wisdom, allow our body to do its job, and by trusting our immune system we prevent reasons to see the inside of a hospital.

      Thank you, again, my friend, for your nice comment. Have yourself a marvelous upcoming weekend. - Val

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Lela - For the readers of my hub I am trying to keep the comments within the main theme, so there was nowhere a suggestion that people "treat themselves" (There was actually a warning "not to self-medicate or avoid medical treatment"). Again, it's all about the preventive, nothing to do with religious or self-healing.

      Even if I used the term "self-healing", it didn't mean anything that would replace doctors or hospitals, but the natural process of the body's healing itself, like when we cut a finger and it heals by itself - plus the untold and unknown healing processes that are constantly being done by our immune system.

      My message of this, and some other hubs is pretty clear, I certainly hope - our mindset, especially those dominating emotions and level of stress play enormous role in supporting and giving a boost to our immune system. It's a well established medical fact, not some New Age theory - based on the nervous and immune systems working closely together.

      So, I totally believe that some religious fanatics may be avoiding medical treatment, but I am not one of those, and my hub is not propagating that we stay away from hospitals "for some religious motivation". I hope that my readers don't get this impression because of such comments - which would falsely fit the title of my hub.

    • Austinstar profile image


      3 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      Psychomatic-illnesses and even some minor illnesses do not require a hospital, or even a doctor to treat. Good health can come from within.

      But I have seen too many people die from trying to treat themselves too.

      At least once a day, some kid dies from "faith healing". They BELIEVE that GOD will heal them. This is absurd.

      Children mostly die from untreated diabetes or childhood cancer. Christian Scientists, Fundamentalist Christians, and Jehovah's Witnesses are the worst child killers (from lack of medical treatment).

      After you have seen a few of these kids die in horrible ways, you too, would want them to get them modern medical treatment.

      Seriously, we CAN treat leprosy now! It's NOT a punishment from the devil or God! Time to get over superstitions and 2,000 year old "bible healing".

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Lela - It certainly sounds like a nightmare. Well, no matter how many hubs I may write that might stimulate people's awareness about their inherent power to heal themselves - the most will take it as some New Age mambo-jumbo and not a biological fact.

      In their minds, people have been programmed to hang around doctors, yearly checkups, and spying on every irregularity in their bodies for a possible deadly disease. They don't get it that every second their stress-polluted minds are sending signals throughout their bodies to dysfunction.

      Once when we learn to take responsibility for the ongoing contents of our thoughts and emotions - hospitals will be used only for accidents and baby-deliveries. But until then, we have to resist this suggestible succumbing to propaganda about our "fragile bodies in a polluted world" and bring the power back to ourselves from those who are benefitting the most from our illnesses.

    • Austinstar profile image


      3 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      Val, I would like to add that in the USA North America (not USA Central America), our government health regulations and INSURANCE COMPANIES are ridiculous!

      We are mandated to shove the patients out as fast as possible to something other than a "hospital".

      Our hospitals have whole wings now dedicated to "observation", or "psychiatric", or "med/surg", or some other DRG (diagnosis related group).

      Department managers have to pour over code books for hours and hours to find the right "code" that the patient's doctor/nurse/lab/x-ray/etc can receive payment for. If we code it wrong, we don't get paid.

      It's called "legal medicine" and the insurance companies came up with this grand plan to get out of paying for covered and uncovered medical services. Mostly they declare that the patient is "not covered" no matter what codes we use. That's why patients go bankrupt trying to pay medical bills.

      You or your readers have no earthly idea what is involved in trying to run a hospital these days! But you got it right - AVOID HOSPITALS AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE!

      So, really, going to a hospital here in the "states" is a medical/legal nightmare.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma

      They sure can be.

    • profile image

      Linda Robinson 

      3 years ago

      An excellent hub Val, how are you doing? Love where you took this hub and the content. And this is a definite must read for anyone who has been in hte hospital or will have to go to a hospital sometime in their lives. Many factors that everyone should be aware of BEFORE their or someone they love hospital's stay. And I know only too well from some past experiences how true this is. Another amazing hub, well done. Talk to you again. Linda

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Paula - As you know, unfolding of any subject depends on the chosen perspective and focal point. So, my hub could be viewed from an angle that's not the one originally intended. It could even be characterized as "mean" - if we chose to see it that way - because "those poor hospitalized souls should not be burdened with being overcautious about the hygiene and other possible negative aspects of their hospital's operation." After all, don't they have enough of their condition that brought them to the hospital in the first place - never mind being bothered with anything else that could just negatively affect their recovery.

      You see, I got all these angles in mind, and yet I wrote the hub. I was even quite specific about "why", so those thinking observers would not twist the theme around and make it look something that it was not.

      Preventive was my theme, even though I took an unorthodox approach (my hubs often insist on that out-of-the-box kind), while still making it pretty clear that MOTIVATION to stay out of the hospital is important just as much as other good preventive measures are. When we unconsciously don't experience hospital as the last resort, but place our health fully in the lap of our immune system, that helps. Our body can heal itself from anything - providing that we give it a chance. So, the message was preventive - not a suggestion to avoid hospitals if we really need them.

      In your comment you said a few things and I am not sure this is a right response, but anyway, it seemed like a thing to say. - Have a fabulous evening my friend. - Val

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Lela - It's O.K., for a moment I got confused because I couldn't see what your point had to do with the essence of my hub. Also, I didn't know that in Texas REAL hospitals are only dealing with serious cases of life and death, and all others are "PSEUDO-hospitals". Here in Canada we have these modern, bona fide health institutions (we also call them "hospitals") where we can do anything from burning warts, colonoscopy, echo-cardiograms...all the way to heart surgeries and baby deliveries - you name it.

      Here we can't "abuse" hospitals, because a doctor has to refer you to a hospital specialist or a technician. That's why I got confused with your theme of people "abusing hospitals for every little ache and pain". Here we just can't technically and legally be their "guest" for no reason at all, and our health care system won't pay the hospital for some crazy little complaint. Well, let's leave this theme - not to create more unnecessary misunderstandings and my confusion. - Be well my friend. Val

    • profile image

      Wild Bill 

      3 years ago

      No Austin, you are the one who missed the point. He suggests avoiding medical attention as much as possible, that includes the pseudo hospitals.

      His use of the word 'hospital' was a general term for medical facilities and suggests avoiding doctors unless absolutely necessary so our bodies can build up a healthy immune system. Did you even read the Hub?

    • fpherj48 profile image


      3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Val.....For many years I have done my utmost to steer clear of Hospitals. In the case of necessity due to a health issue that requires intensive or 24/7 medical care, yes of course we have little choice. What I try to do, as you suggest is to take good preventative care of myself as well as my loved ones. We do have the capabilities & knowledge with foresight to follow the appropriate methods of self-care.

      Thank Heaven at the present time, no one in my life's circle is hospitalized. If I know someone will be in the Hospital for a very short period of time, I will immediately send a card so they know I am thinking of them. My note usually reads: "I'm wishing you well. Please contact me once you are home again. I want very much to visit, bring you goodies and help in any I can until you are back to your old self again." And then I KEEP that promise.

      This basically covers everything Val. The sick person can rest & focus on getting better rather than being inundated with "visitors." We can avoid being contaminated with Hospital "bugs."....and our loved one has something to look forward to at home and someone to help them while on the mend. I just like to cover all bases sensibly.

      At the end of the day Val, whether everyone will admit this, "good Health" should be our most prevalent mission, for the lack of healthiness obstructs our "living well.".....Peace & Love, Paula

    • Austinstar profile image


      3 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      Actually, i think you missed my point. I was agreeing with you. It is the misuse by PEOPLE that use hospitals for every little ache and pain that is the issue here.

      Like I said, there are pseudo hospitals that do the little things you speak of.

    • Jo Lim profile image

      Jo Lim 

      3 years ago

      ValKaras , Thanks so much for concern. I have been diagnosed but live is not smooth sailing. Although on medications, side effects are plenty and I'm always susceptible to illness which sometimes require hospitalisation. I hate hospital but I have no choice. No matter what; Always look at the bright side =)

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Lela - First, you could have made up your mind about agreeing or disagreeing. Instead you say that "all I say in my hub is true - and sometimes false". It' can't be "all true" if it's sometimes false.

      Furthermore, hospitals are NOT just for emergencies. People come there for all kinds of checkups and tests because only hospitals have that kind of sophisticated equipment. In other words, if your family doctor is "suspecting" something, or wants to "eliminate a possibility", he sends you to a hospital.

      Next, hospitals are NOT there just to "save lives", but to fix bones, cuts, remove warts, clean ears, and a bunch of other minor complaints which are not necessarily "cosmetic".

      Next, there are many of those psycho-somatic problems which require overnight stay in the hospital - like severe panic episode that mimics a heart attack. Doctors want to make sure.

      In other words, hospitals don't only consist of Intensive Care Unit, and not everyone in there needs their life to be saved - but there are many legit reasons that people come there.

      I am not "slamming hospitals", at least not with any lies. I said at least in one place that hospitals save lives - but they also have a reputation that tells a little different story, and that story was in my hub.

      My point of the hub, which I announced right at the start was that we should be doing our best in taking care of our health, particularly enhancing our immune system with out mind's model of functioning - so that we don't need any hospitals. I certainly didn't say that at the onset of a heart attack we should "meditate" or "take a vitamin".

      So, there was a specific purpose of my hub which had prevention in focus. Maybe you missed the whole point of it, but it's O.K., let's not make a big deal out of it. Have a great day my friend. - Val

    • Austinstar profile image


      3 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      I worked in hospitals for 38 years, and yes, all that you say is true (and sometimes false). We have gotten to the point where most people think that hospitals are where you go to die, and for a large majority of the sick and injured this is kind of true.

      With the advent of hospice care, we moved a lot of the "dying" people to hospice care in order to focus on getting hospitals back into the acute care business.

      The only advantage of going to a hospital is that this is where you find people, conditions, and equipment needed to save your life in an acute situation.

      Hospitals are not "nursing homes", or "hospices", or "non-emergency care" facilities. They are there for the sole purpose of treating life-threatening situations only. Although there are pseudo hospitals set up for elective care like cosmetic surgery and non-emergency care.

      Otherwise, one should only go to a hospital for serious illnesses and accidents, not for ingrown toenails, and common belly aches.

      It is amazing how many people waltz into a hospital and expect "hotel" care. I have heard people complain because the TV in their room wasn't "High Def"!

      If you want people to wait on you because you "feel bad", a hospital is not for you.

      Develop a relationship with a good primary care physician and follow his or her advice.

      You won't need a hospital unless you experience an acute illness or injury. Then, you WILL need one, so don't be slamming hospitals, Val.

      They serve a real purpose and should be used for that purpose and that purpose only.

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Breakfastpop - That doctor friend of yours was a very wise person and probably one of those doctors who sticks to his oath. Thank you for commenting.

    • breakfastpop profile image


      3 years ago

      A doctor friend of mine told me a long time ago that we should all do everything possible to avoid hospitals!

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Stella - Officially I agree with you - yes, folks should have all those checkups done. Off the record, unless I have an accident injury doctors don't see me. In that department, I am an altogether "different animal", and many things that are taken as a "must" by social standards don't apply to me.

      I see health in a completely different way, and theorizing about it would get us nowhere - but results are speaking for themselves, and to me results are all that matters.

    • ValKaras profile imageAUTHOR

      Vladimir Karas 

      3 years ago from Canada

      Jo Lim - From your Profile I gather that you were diagnosed with ACTH deficiency. Is that the latest one, or they are still guessing, because according to your comment doctors "can't diagnose what's wrong"? I hope - whatever it is - that it has stabilized to the point to allow you to live a normal life.

    • Jo Lim profile image

      Jo Lim 

      3 years ago

      Good to know that at 72, you are still in great health=) I personally do not like hospital but have been in and out countless times over past few years. For almost 2 years, doctors cant seem to diagnose what's wrong with me. Now I'm just visiting for follow-up purpose. Being healthy is always the best!

    • Stella Kaye profile image

      Stella Kaye 

      3 years ago from UK

      Good all round advice and by all means do your best to avoid hospitals by staying in as good health as possible but you still need to get regular health checks at the Doctors as you get older. Blood pressure checks are vitally important every few years as it is not something you would be aware of if it becomes elevated; there are no symptoms. Women will need regular mammograms and smear tests and both sexes can have bowel cancer checks done as they get older. Prevention is always better than cure, but health checks can be life savers if there is something wrong which can be detected and cured before it takes hold.


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